Thursday, 25 February 2021

Benefits - Flag

  


  Has anyone not heard the latest track to be released by Middlesbrough collective Benefits (https://www.facebook.com/benefitstheband/) yet? It's a song that's getting plenty of attention (and attracting comments such as "...this years Bob Vylan") and as such it's tempting not to bother adding my voice to the crescendo and to post something more obscure instead. But they're important. They're fresh and have something to say. So here's another blog that's recommending you give them a listen. 

   Formed in 2019 and featuring a line up of Kingsley Chapman (Guitar/Vocal), Jonny Snowball (Drums), Robbie Major (Synth/Noise) and Hugh Major (Bass), they play noisy songs about the state of the country we live in. They deal with subjects such as xenophobia, repression and the Rule Britannia ethos that's beginning to leave a foul stench drifting up from our green and pleasant land. You can find their music here : https://benefitstheband.bandcamp.com/ 

  Don't expect typical cookie cutter punk rock. It's a sound that hops genres, it's inventive, topical and angry. It says what needs saying. And therefore it's more punk than pretty much any of the bands that you like.

  This is Flag

  And this is what they say about it;  "Flag" is about trying to understand Great Britain's place in the world today behind its shambolic and angry appearance. It's a reaction against British politicians using nationalism as a red, white and blue seducer to drag the country's eyes and brains away from the calamity they live in. The weird obsession the country has with war; the arrogance of how illustrious it thinks it is perceived to be by the rest of the world; and the misguided view that by simply waving a flag you somehow paper over the crack of simultaneously despising millions of your countrymen, presumably including fellow patriots.


This place stinks of old wars,
Subservience, semi-final defeats
God and flags
Pulling your mask down for a fag.
You’re a musty relic,
Hiding behind that tatty sheet, shouting, screaming, getting pulled back by your mates. Stamping on cans, raw neck in the sun. Dog water on tap.
What even are you?
You’ve been had mate
The Italian job is on, sit down, shut up, quote the funnies, laugh at the foreigns, drink yer tea, tell the kids everything is shit these days,
wave yer fucking flag, wave yer fucking flag, WAVE YER FUCKING FLAG
Feel powerful, feel proud,
Subjects oh subjects, we used to be this, we used to be that, and we want it back,
but no one is jealous, no one cares, so wheel it all out
Break that emergency glass, parade forever, make it meaningless,
Bow down to that tatty flag. But what does it mean? What does it mean?
WAVE YER FUCKING FLAG
You still hate your fucking neighbour, the clothes you wear are foreign anyway, expensive or cheap and your car is German and its nice, good runner, decent milage, reliable…
The other town down the road are all inbred you said, they all talk funny don’t they - fucking weirdos - Oh and That London eh, don’t get me started, what a shithole ey ey ey?!
You’re fucking broken, your heads gone,
Imagine some good old days you think existed, we deserve better than this…
BLUE BLOOD STILL RUNS RED

Privilege won’t save you.
Eton won’t save you.
People who speak Latin WILL NOT save you.
That stiff upper lip will crumble, THAT silver spoon will be sold, you’ll be forgotten.
You’re nothing to them, NOTHING.
Stop falling for their bullshit,
Throw those plastic chairs, puff out your chest, rule Bri-fucking-tannia, rule those foreign fucking waves, you can’t even swim straight - armbands on - yer getting dragged down, yer drowing in it all, DROWING IN IT ALL
That flag won’t protect you forever, it’ll sink, it looks worn, the colours are running, wasn’t even made here
It’s all a lie.
This isn’t politics, you’re just holding a flag, you’re just a fucking pole.
Wave yer fucking flag
Wave your flag
WAVE. YOUR. FLAG.

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