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Flobots

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Mammon
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I first heard the Flobots song "Handlebars" and thought it was pretty awesome...

Lyrics beings...

I can ride my bike with no handlebars

No handlebars

No handlebars

I can ride my bike with no handlebars

No handlebars

No handlebars

Look at me, look at me

hands in the air like it's good to be

ALIVE

and I'm a famous rapper

even when the paths're all crookedy

I can show you how to do-si-do

I can show you how to scratch a record

I can take apart the remote control

And I can almost put it back together

I can tie a knot in a cherry stem

I can tell you about Leif Ericson

I know all the words to "De Colores"

And "I'm Proud to be an American"

Me and my friend saw a platypus

Me and my friend made a comic book

And guess how long it took

I can do anything that I want cuz, look:

I can keep rhythm with no metronome

No metronome

No metronome

And I can see your face on the telephone

On the telephone

On the telephone

Look at me

Look at me

Just called to say that it's good to be

ALIVE

In such a small world

I'm all curled up with a book to read

I can make money open up a thrift store

I can make a living off a magazine

I can design an engine sixty four

Miles to a gallon of gasoline

I can make new antibiotics

I can make computers survive aquatic conditions

I know how to run a business

I can make you wanna buy a product

Movers shakers and producers

Me and my friends understand the future

I see the strings that control the systems

I can do anything with no assistance

Cuz I can lead a nation with a microphone

With a microphone

With a microphone

And I can split the atom of a molecule

Of a molecule

Of a molecule

Look at me

Look at me

Driving and I won't stop

And it feels so good to be

Alive and on top

My reach is global

My tower secure

My cause is noble

My power is pure

I can hand out a million vaccinations

Or let'em all die in exasperation

Have'em all healed of their lacerations

Have'em all killed by assassination

I can make anybody go to prison

Just because I don't like'em and

I can do anything with no permission

I have it all under my command

Because I can guide a missile by satellite

By satellite

By satellite

And I can hit a target through a telescope

Through a telescope

Through a telescope

And I can end the planet in a holocaust

In a holocaust

In a holocaust

In a holocaust

In a holocaust

In a holocaust

I can ride my bike with no handlebars

No handlebars

No handlebars

I can ride my bike with no handlebars

No handlebars

It seemed pretty postive and about pursuing values and living and what not. So I got the CD and found that there is some good stuff on it, but it's bogged down with alot of pseudo-Marxist stuff and they also have this webcomic, which had this page...

2008-07-08-change017.jpg

And this page...

2008-07-03-america-will-be.jpg

It's all package deals. Freedoming fighting and smooth poetic lyrics, tobbled with psuedo-Leftist stuff.

*sigh* I'm really disappointed.

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The video shows the choice between the American sense of life (which is depicted as bad) and an altruist sense of life, which seems to be dirty but noble. The corporate sector bustles with smoke and smog spewing callousness. The "people", one assumes, are downtrodden because of the selfish corporatechnocrats. At the very end is a violent, marxist, class-strugle. I think the song/vid is a talanted representation of a terrible message.

Edited by FeatherFall
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The video shows the choice between the American sense of life (which is depicted as bad) and an altruist sense of life, which seems to be dirty but noble. The corporate sector bustles with smoke and smog spewing callousness. The "people", one assumes, are downtrodden because of the selfish corporatechnocrats. At the very end is a violent, marxist, class-strugle. I think the song/vid is a talanted representation of a terrible message.

The positive side of business is represented in the second verse. Whats being depicted in the third verse is the military-industrial complex and influential corporations who profit from war, not enterprise in general.

Or at least thats how I interpreted it.

Edited by eriatarka
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The positive side of business is represented in the second verse. Whats being depicted in the third verse is the military-industrial complex and influential corporations who profit from war, not enterprise in general.

Or at least thats how I interpreted it.

Yeah, but after seeing the video I'm wondering if see the difference between the two. It looks like there is some regret there... that the place they lived in became a facist dystopia? The smaller details are what clue me into the fact that I don't think they really see the difference between the two. The two friends or brothers walked down too different paths. One was a dove, and the other was a "C" -- what does the C stand for? Capitalism? Corporations? Cain? Coolness? What? When the brother who choice the C world was walking around, it seemed like he wasn't happy with what he saw, which was drive cool cars, hot girls and nice clothes (contrast to the other brothers/friends path where he was poor and beat down but happy). When he was in the board room, the chart was going higher and higher and ended up in... what looked like a blood spray. And then all the sudden this successfull businessman was a politician and everything goes to shit, which means there are roads everywhere and cameras and factories spitting out smoke. You could interpret this as the fact that no matter what, politicians don't do anything good, but I doubt that was the point. Plus, all those innocent civilians were gunned down for protesting, which would indicate that Joe Corporation brought about a really oppressive regime of some kind. For what reason, we don't know...

That's another odd thing about Flobot's lyrics and comics and stuff. They don't seem to blame anyone in particular, and don't really specify what's the problem or the cause of it. I think it's left up for interpretation, but it's kind of difficult.

One of there songs talks about shuting down Gitmo and bringing back Che Guevera and other Marxist guerrillas. So, it's hard not to get the hint.

^Exactly, Kelz. Also, I thought it was, "I can do anything with no RESISTANCE." Did you take those lyrics from a website or did they come straight out of the CD booklet?

I got them from a website, so I'm not for sure. It sounds like RESISTANCE to me too.

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  • 2 months later...

I saw them in concert when they opened for The Fray last year and they had a lot of songs/statements that fit perfectly the typical liberal political positions. They sang a song inspired by Katrina that was about how Bush doesn't care about anyone. Their lead singer also proudly wore an Obama '08 shirt.

Here is a sample of a statement from their website:

"Our goals during the DNC are:

To celebrate the fact that a progressive African-American candidate running a grassroots campaign on an antiwar platform has secured the nomination of a major political party.

To claim this nomination as a victory for the antiwar movement.

To reaffirm our moral obligation to end the occupation of Iraq, support the reconstruction of Iraq, and fully fund veterans’ benefits.

To call attention to ongoing efforts to address other forms of violence and neglect in US foreign and domestic policy.

To commit ourselves to transforming this country into a resource for peacemaking and sustainability."

I believe the song "Handlebars" is supposed to be denigrating the US for having such a high image of itself despite the fact that it is just an evil war monger in their eyes. The first two verses are "look at us, look how great we are" followed by the third which is "look at how much horrible devastation we can cause."

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I too was very disappointed by this band. When I first heard a bit of it on the radio, I thought it was a nice song, celebrating one's efficacious sense of life, doing little tricks with ease and just enjoying one's own purpose and action. Then of course, I kept listening to the song and watched the video and saw a really malevolent side to it all.

Still, I sing the chorus to myself and enjoy that for what it is. :huh:

Also, they do do a fantastic cover of 'Happy Together':

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KSvrCPFXAKs

The best use of rap I've heard in ages.

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One more thing - I was listening to this song again, and noticed a mention of Leif Ericson. Leif Ericson is a favourite amongst liberal types who want to discredit any achievement by the Colonists. Essentially, their idea is that since a few vikings decided to land in Newfoundland, set up a very small settlement and leave pretty soon afterwards, leaving no records or maps of the country to get back (i.e. having no intention to return), they should be put on the same level as the Colonists who went across the seas with the direct intention of setting up a long-term community there.

The goal is to ultimately make the European colonisation seem less impressive (along with accusing them of the genocide of Native Americans and the theft of nomadic land).

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I think the reason is mistaking trade with force, believing that there can be no separation of economy and state and a lack of knowledge about ethical egoism and therefore capitalism. To paraphrase Rand, they don't see the difference between Attila and the businessman.

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  • 2 weeks later...
  • 2 years later...

They have a great song on an earlier EP called "Jetpack."

Some lyrics:

[Chorus:]

I will not bend

I will not bow

I will not break

I'll stand my ground

Won't be afraid

To sing out loud

To sing out loud

To sing out loud

The visions of what's involved

The tensions you must resolve

Distractions will just dissolve

YOU ARE NOT LIKE ME

He's encountered a setback,

He isn't down to let that

Keep him on the ground. Press that

Button- ignite the jetpack!

Launch pad shrink disappear

Past the brink the

Atmosphere's thinning and his

Plasma's tingly

Planes appear to be birds and

Birds appear to be bees and

He's hearing the words that

Occur to him for no reason

"What are you living your life for

What are you willing to die for

What do you believe to be the grain of truth you can provide for

This grand adventure?

Is it your plan to spend your

Days batted about by

These random events?

Are you fueled by another engine

Lighting a fire beneath?

Have you breathed and seen your breath in the winds

And have you reached that point?"

....

The heights you'll reach the

Depths you'll delve to

Depends on the propulsion

System that propels you

Methods that compel you

Messages they sell you

Punishments they give you

For doing what they tell you

But we've got passion

They've got prisons

You've got the freedom to

Make a decision

Will you abandon

All your addictions

Take your stand and

Live your convictions

What've you got to lose what've

You been taught to chose

What're you so hot to prove with your

Beautiful socks and shoes

The costumes' frayed cloth covers

Skin like a shroud

Exhaust fumes fade off in the wind

Like a cloud

Edited by Dante
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