"Botify the People" explained, pt. 5 – Faith in the System

This song sounds the most like Rage Against the Machine on this record – if you only go by the lyrics. When you listen to the song musically it’s about as much removed from RATM as you could think. It’s a ballad featuring piano and even a glockenspiel solo, but juxtaposition is something I absolutely love love love in music and you’ll find this throughout my back catalogue. I both can not and will not help myself from combining a beautiful ballad like this with lyrics about ”mindfuck” and ”rape”. I even semi-apologetically explain ”I’m too crass for goodness’ sakes” in the lyrics – this song really challenges you to feel it. Not just listen to it. Feel it. Because if you don’t, you’re going to wonder exactly what the hell I’m trying to say with it. And fair dues if you don’t feel it. Honestly, it’s a challenge. But I don’t need my music to be easy on the listener all the time. Sometimes it’s fun both for the listener and for the songwriter to know how far each of us is willing to go. 

So no, although I think it might work well as a single from a musical standpoint, I don’t think we’re quite there yet to process these kinds of lyrics in combination with a ballad on mainstream radio. The indie’s will do exactly what they want obviously, and more power to them! 

So what is this song actually about then? Like I said, this song is the most Rage Against the Machine-like probably in our whole catalogue. And one reason for that is the theme of the song which is the unwillingness to conform to societal or other imposed norms designed to keep us docile and not question how self-appointed authorities would have us behave. ”Why am I here, am I only to please?” That’s the right question, I believe. And when it comes to social media for example, we’re only meant to please the algorithm right? Not really our artistic selves, or if so, then only up to a certain point. And that’s a shame. The minute someone sets limits to how you’re able to shine as a personality, it’s compromising on the thing that’s most wonderful about our species. 

Insider scoop: I actually like the live version of this song better than the recorded one! So count your blessings if you manage to catch this one live. 

Peace & Love, 

Jon

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