Bush-bashing anti-warisms by an American whose voice really carries weight…
Bless them for trying and everything, but it’s unlikely that many of rock’s most prominent anti-Bush campaigners have done much to change anyone’s vote. REM can’t even write a catchy tune these days, let alone effect lasting political change, while you can hardly imagine staunch conservatives in, say, Arkansas ticking the box marked ‘Kerry’ because a whimpering mooncalf like Conor Oberst told them it was the right thing to do.
Which is why ‘Mosh’ is such a relief. Last year’s leaked bootleg ‘We Are Americans’ was allegedly analysed by the Secret Service for its anti-Bush sentiment, but ‘Mosh’ is the sound of Shady wading in at the 11th hour. “Stomp, push up, shove, mush, fuck Bush/Until they bring our troops home” he growls over rainfall, gunshots and music so slow and oppressive you can practically feel your ribcage tightening. “Let me simplify the rhyme just to amplify the noise”, he spits, enunciating every syllable to make sure that no part of the message is allowed to slip by. “Let the President answer on higher anarchy/Strap him with an AK-47, let him go fight his own war/Let him impress Daddy that way… No more blood for oil” before exhorting people to go out and vote.
By the time you read this, the election will be over, but this is still an immensely powerful piece of music from a man at the very top of his game. Let’s hope that when one of the most culturally-important musicians in America speaks, people take notice.