History first: Chrissie Hynde is publicly OK with Rush Limbaugh featuring this Veterans Day weekend’s amazing song prominently (and for years!) on his hate-talk show. She went through some real casuistry to get there, but she still got there. That is gross, because the republic has enough problems without a xenophobic cyst like Rush, and good music is always in relatively short supply. (Fact: as a nerdy and eager pre-teen, I purchased and [twice] read RL’s seminal release See, I Told You So, thanks to lobbying from older relatives, but I have since made peace with that.)
Yet as a snob like me has to constantly remind himself, art doesn’t belong to anyone. That is why the Romantics could so intentionally misread Paradise Lost and decide that Lucifer was a hero and good guy after all; that is why the twentieth century’s most important poem, T.S. Eliot’s “The Waste Land,” so carefully appropriates and distorts the West’s detritus; that is how chains of theft can clear pasture for genius (cf. the Stones & Zeppelin/the blues, The Ramones/British punk, Greek sculpture/Apple’s matte products); and unfortunately that is how somebody like the aforementioned demagogue can share tastes with you, me, and all manner of progressives who like “vinyl,” coffee made in French presses, and Lou Reed.
But whatever. Just listen, maybe comment, then click back out into the Internet.
Seriously, isn’t this track fantastic? Are you not moving a hip or two? That bassline is in the empyrean with cuts like “Another One Bites the Dust” and “Hypnotize.” It is a thick existential burden, a rich man’s text. Go forth and prosper, y’all.