We Need The Sex Pistols Now More Than Ever

By Joshua Blake

In 1977 the Berlin Wall had yet to fall, Jimmy Carter pardoned Vietnam draft dodgers – Saturday Night Fever, Smokey and the Bandit and Star Wars made their marks on American cinema.

Across the Atlantic, The Sex Pistols birthed their only album to date: Nevermind The Bollocks Here’s The Sex Pistols on October 28th of ’77. 

From Johnny Rotten’s (now formerly known as Lydon) screaming about how he’ll hop the Berlin Wall in an energized opener to their album, “Holidays In The Sun,” sends a prompt goodbye message: Please don’t be waiting for me.

Arguably the most notorious band of their day, The Sex Pistols never shyed away from political atmosphere, and 1977 never sounded so current at this day and age. 

While America isn’t dealing with a figurehead of a queen (“God save the queen/cause tourists are money/And our figurehead is not what she seems”) it is dealing with a president who results to slingshotting insults to his political opponents at home and abroad. 

Ironically, the 11th track on the record talks of a narcissistic personality called “New York.”

“An immitation from New York/ You’re made in Japan/From cheese and chalk/You’re hipy tarts hero/’Cos you put on a bad show/Oh don’t it show.”

The track goes on to say the character is bored and acting flash, and they better keep their mouth shut. 

Given Trump’s latest nickname for Kim Jong Un is Rocket Man, and Kim called him a dotard, international relations are going great. 

Now North Korea is saying Trump’s words toward them in his U.N. address warrants a declaration of war, and greenlights the nation to shoot down American aircraft outside of their own border. 

We need a group that captures The Sex Pistols unabashed, raw voice of anxiety that Britain and the rest of Europe dealt with during the late 70’s – a time when the Cold War was unresolved and escalated tensions worldwide. 

America and the rest of the globe are experiencing a similar unrest, and music can help us cope during these tests of willpower, but we need the gritty punk sound of the Pistols to translate our fears. 

Is anyone up for the task?

The Power of Words

My interpretation of “Anyone Else,” PVRIS’s most haunting song to date

By Joshua Blake

The most haunting song of PVRIS’s sophomore album, All We Know Of Heaven, All We Need Of Hell, is one of self-reflection and discovery.

Whether lead singer Lyndsey Gunnulfsen is speaking to another or to her own inner demons, she wants them to know – she needs them to know – that she doesn’t belong to anyone else.

A siren-esque alarm sounds off in between the verses, as if to warn of imminent danger that no one can escape, yet it’s compelling in its nature, and it’s hard to not hum along to.

Dave Grohl of Foo Fighters once said “You can sing a song to 85,000 people and they’ll sing it back for 85,000 different reasons.”

I made the mistake of trying to figure out what Lynn was talking about in this song, and then I recalled Dave Grohl’s quote.

To me, something about this song speaks to my depression and how isolating it can be.

It isolates me from others – even from myself – and it’s in that understanding that these lyrics resonate with me so deeply

“‘Cause I could touch a hundred thousand souls,” sings Gunnulfsen, “But none of them would ever feel like home. And no matter how far and wide I roam/ You’re the only one I’ll ever know.”

When I’m depressive, I feel as if there’s a demon inside of my mind, poisoning my thoughts. And it’s in those moments when that demon is the only one I’ll ever know.

I feel shackled, imprisoned in a mental cell, and as Gunnulfsen notes “I know you only want me to yourself, but I don’t belong to anyone else.”

Something about that last lyric really strikes a chord with how I look towards my inner demon – they’re selfish and seductive – as manipulation clouds my judgement, it only wants me to itself.

Once Lynn screams “I don’t belong to anyone else” over and over towards the last quarter of the song, I feel that demon cower in fear. Now I’m back in control of my destiny.

It’s perplexing that another soul’s demons can dispel my own just through the pain in their voice, the pain in their words. But that’s what gives words so much power: they can change our perception on anything.