This is Just a Punk Rock Post\*
By Nicholas Solter on Apr 27, 2007
I feel like an unlikely punk rock fan, since I listen mostly to classical and jazz music. But I really seem to like the band Bad Religion.
Listen to them sing American Jesus, an indictment of US nationalism and sanctimonious morality.
I think the main reasons I like the band are:
- The up-tempo beats and catchy melodies.
- The intelligent lyrics. Not surprising, since the lead singer, Greg Graffin has a doctorate in evolutionary paleontology from Cornell, and teaches at UCLA. Here's an example, from Struck a Nerve:
Every day I wander
In negative disposition
As I'm bombarded by superlatives
Realizing very well that I am not alone
I look to tomorrow for salvation
But I'm thinking altruistically
I try to close my eyes
But I cannot ignore the stimuli
- The band's unabashedly liberal views. For example, in 2004 (after the onset of the Iraq war) they released an album called, "The Empire Strikes First." One song, Let Them Eat War includes the following lyrics:
From the force to the union shops
The war economy is making new jobs
But the people who benefit most
Are breaking bread with their benevolent hosts
Who never stole from the rich to give to the poor
All they ever gave to them was a war
And a foreign enemy to deplore
\* With all due respect to "Punk Rock Song" on the album, "The Gray Race."