New York Music Daily

Love's the Only Engine of Survival

Month: November, 2022

Slashing Pseudonymous Protest Punk From Somewhere in Scotland

This blog tries not to be all-plandemic, all the time: everybody needs a break from the ongoing holocaust sometimes. But at the same time, we need to keep an eye on what the globalist fascists are up to. One artist who’s doing that – and putting out a killer series of punk rock songs and animated videos – goes by the name of William Wallace, after the great Scottish freedom fighter. And even better than watching them at evil censorious youtube, you can see them all at Frances Leader’s Substack.

With a snarling, serpentine minor-key lead guitar line, Won’t Be Defeated is the catchiest and edgiest of the songs. The imagery in the opening seconds of the video for Twilight Zone – a hybrid cellphone/hand sanitizer/spycam robot – says it all, and the guitars are deliciously noisy.

Rich Man’s Trick (a shout-out to the documentary masterpiece) is more of a standard-issue bludgeoning punk rock tune and has a video with a great punchline. Wallace calls out Deutsche Bank, Goldman Sachs and the rest of the bankster criminals for their role in the controlled demolition of the world economy in Megabank. The first song in the series, Your Government Loves You, is the only video that shows the three-piece band, albeit with faces blanked out: is it a coincidence that the tune is a knockoff of Mongoloid, by Devo?

Although Leader is best known as an environmentalist – she has been a real-life leader in the UK anti-fracking and anti-5G movements – she also has great taste in music and puts up the occasional playlist. She’s a controversial figure and has been banned on social media. One of her most cited articles is probably the most comprehensively sourced page on the web for the dangers of 5G (like all EMF frequencies, it gets more deadly the higher up you go). She’s also an expert in ayurveda and traditional Chinese medicine, a satirist, and a psychic. You may not agree with all her contentions but she always gives you something provocative and entertaining.


Inspiration and Rapture From Harpist Edmar Castaneda in a Sonically Challenging Downtown Space

At his concert today at St. Paul’s Chapel downtown, harpist Edmar Castaneda told the small crowd huddled together in the wintry chill under the balcony organ that he was sick of playing “For computers.” The audience seconded that observation and roared their approval when he’d fire off sparkling cascades, playing brisk melody lines against supple basslines, bending the body of his instrument for a wah-wah effect, or slamming the strings at the end of a song like the inside of a piano to cap off a big coda. But lockdown-era cabin fever aside, at this show Castaneda felt the room’s nature reverb and focused more on rapture and resonance than the pyrotechnics he’s best known for.

His wife, singer Andrea Tierra, marveled at how the Financial District had revitalized itself in the years since she’d walked around the neighborhood during the somber, acrid aftermath of 9/11. “”We always have to fight…New York always has to keep coming back, I think this is a very important message in this part of the city,” she emphasized.

Airing out her understatedly powerful, expressive alto voice, she channeled a distant angst as her husband rose from a suspenseful pulsing, verdant intro to a slow, spiky, bolero-tinged ballad, possibly titled Me Voy Llorando. It was a prime example of the individualistic blend of latin jazz and nueva cancion he’s made a name for himself with – and has played with his wife, whom he instantly fell in love with at a jam session in Queens eighteen years ago.

Tierra introduced a more spare, dancing tune, Cancion Con Todos, as a message of unity for all the people of the Americas, giving voice to citizens struggling for peace, The group – which also included incisive soprano saxophonist Shlomi Cohen and a terse, purposeful drummer – took the song bouncing, doublespeed, with an insistent solo out.

Castaneda played solo on Hecho (“Acts,” a Biblical reference), bringing the atmosphere up from guarded hope to starrier, more rhythmic terrain and a graceful, reflective ending. From there, he brought the rhythm section back to close the set with a wildly flurrying, merengue-flavored tune, Fresh Water, bristling with modal intensity over staggered, strutting syncopation.

$10 for Percocet in Queens

There’s a strange and interesting rock and rock-adjacent triplebill coming up on Dec 1 at Bar Freda in Ridgewood, where the segues are kind of weird, but the acts on the bill are flying under the radar and are definitely worth checking out for a $10 cover. At 8 PM, there’s First Crush, with their fetching guy/girl harmonies and newschool front-porch folk vibe. At 9 the very eclectic, sometimes noisy, sometimes icily 80s-influenced Percocet follow on the bill, with minimalist shoegazers To the Wedding headlining.

Percocet are the most intriguing act of the evening, and infinitely more lively than their name implies. Their debut album – streaming at Bandcamp – is slyly titled Enjoy. An eerie, ugly, pool of sound introduces the first song, A Body, then guitarist Digo Best shifts between cyclotron swirl and lingering jangle.

The drums hit a somber Atrocity Exhibition tumble groove in the second song, I’m Leaving: it’s like the slow version of Joy Division’s Transmission with a woman out front and denser, more distorted guitars. Track three, Coded (as in, dead?) is a beefier take on watery, opaquely drifting Cocteau Twins sonics, right down to frontwoman/bassist Jennica Best’s disembodied vocals.

The final cut is October, a lilting clave tune with hypnotically circling, lingering chorus-box guitar. These guys (and woman) have a good sense of humor and deserve to be better known.

Eugene Chrysler Brings the Retro Rock Party to a Familiar Williamsburg Haunt

One of the tracks on Eugene Chrysler‘s latest album Hillbilly Fun Park – streaming at Bandcamp – is titled Mr. 1-4-5. It’s an insider music joke but it’s a good one, a sly sideways salute to 1950s formulas. Chrysler is a rarity in rock, a bassist and a frontman who is known to play his big bull fiddle behind his back, Hendrix style, when the mood strikes. He’s a connoisseur of retro 50s sounds – rockabilly, honkytonk and surf rock – and he’s playing Skinny Dennis, his usual New York home base, on Dec 5 at 9 PM.

The record opens with the title track, a slinky Stray Cats style tune. Chrysler goes down to his Sleep LaBeef low register to match the smoky baritone sax, guitarist Bill Kirchen finding cool new things to do with a familiar four-chord progression with his reverb full on.

The rest of the record is a fun, expert mix of styles, some of which you wouldn’t think would work that well together, but Chrysler has his tail fins up and leaves a lot of wannabes breathing his twin exhaust. Track two, Darlin’ has pedal steel sailing over a jump blues-influenced groove. Dementia is a Peter Gunne Theme style tune complete with creepy theremin. Broke On Bob Wills Music, a shout-out to the heroes of western swing, has all the right touches – clarinet, fiddle, steel, even a little piano break – where the guy who invented the stuff would have put them.

Speed Trap harks back to the hillbilly boogie roots of 60s biker rock. Chrysler follows that one with I Cannot Forget, a Gentle on My Mind-style countrypolitan shuffle and then returns to jump blues with Eugene’s Boogie.

The band romp through train-line rock with Uh Uh Honey, a deliciously Lynchian roadhouse theme in I’ve Been Better, and then an amusing detour back into western swing with One More One More. From there Chrysler hits a vintage Carl Perkins pulse in Cut Me Down and then vintage Tex-Mex in Big Bad Habit.

Kirchen’s guitar scrambles and sparkles with a characteristically polymath 50s touch in It Is What It Is. The funniest song on the album is Plate Glass Window, a Johnny Cash-inspired kiss-off anthem. The last of the sixteen tracks on this monster of a playlist is Too Much Coffee, which is awfully obvious and an old trick, but a lot of fun all the same.

A Smart, Dynamic Debut Album and a Bed-Stuy Show by a Rising Star Saxophonist

It was mid-May, 2021 – eighteen months ago, but it feels like a lifetime. At that point in time, no one in New York knew whether indoor concerts that weren’t clandestine would ever exist in this city again. Fortuitously, photographer Jimmy Katz had been scheduling a series of free outdoor jazz shows in Central Park, moving from one location to another in search of the ideal spot.

One of those locations was a clearing a few blocks north of the 82nd Street entrance on the west side. Mark Turner had played an unselfconsciously gorgeous set with a trio up on the hill to the south the previous afternoon. This particular day, a twentysomething tenor saxophonist with a muscular style was volleying her way through a handful of classic Coltrane tunes, out in front of a chordless quartet. Who was this fiery yet thoughtful player?

As it turned out, it was Julieta Eugenio. Even more serendipitously. she stuck around. She put out an album, Jump – streaming at Spotify – and has a gig coming up on Dec 6 at 9 PM at Bar Lunatico with the rhythm section on the record, Matt Dwonszyk on bass and Jonathan Barber on drums.

On the record, Eugenio is more reserved than she is onstage: either way, she doesn’t waste notes. The opening number is titled Efes – a shout-out to the delicious Turkish lager beer, maybe? No Turkish flavor in this one, but sizzling trills, a shout-out to an iconic Paul Desmond riff, and a lot of judicious use of space as Barber reaches for textures and surprise punches from around the kit. Meanwhile, Dwonszyk runs catchy, spring-loaded riffage, holding the center and firing off a wryly colorful solo midway through.

Eugenio opts for a balmy approach in the album’s title track, Barber prowling among the cymbals this time, Dwonszyk again serving as incisive anchor. There’s striking contrast between her spare, reflective lines, Barber’s carnivalesque drive and Dwonszyk’s bounce in La Jungla.

Eugenio stays in misty, even more spacious mode in the fond, vivid ballad For You. Racoon Tune turns out to be a warmly ornamented, latin funk-tinged number and a long launching pad for Eugenio to dance here way up to a percussively burning bass solo.

The version of Flamingo here is a samba, Dwonszyk working a supple, long-limbed pulse over an altered clave as Eugenio clusters and then backs away. She builds brooding, modally-infused resonance over a similar groove in Another Bliss, the album’s most darkly striking number, which the band take down to a mysterious whisper at the end.

Eugenio reinvents Billie Holiday’s Crazy He Calls Me as an opiated, expansive jazz waltz until Dwonszyk breaks the spell with his sober solo out. The group hit a pensive drive with Snowbirds, the bandleader in enigmatic mode again, Barber holding back from chewing the scenery with his boom-and-splash. It’s the best song on the album.

The trio close with the similarly moody Tres: it’s an ambience that suits these three well. Eugenio is really someone to keep your eye on.

A Viscerally Transcendent New Album and a Bed-Stuy Gig From Pianist Eri Yamamoto

Pianist Eri Yamamoto survived a hideous attack to make a beautiful record. In the early days of the 2020 lockdown, Yamamoto was assaulted on a Brookyn street. Her attacker mistook her for Chinese (she’s Japanese) and accused her of unleashing the Covid virus (which seems to have been manufactured in China, but was invented in a North Carolina bioweapons lab). This is the kind of incident that takes place when a society is divided and conquered, when orange-haired demagogues step to the podium to make divisive anti-Asian statements.

Although Yamamoto is a streetwise New Yorker – she honed her chops back in the 90s at the gritty Avenue B Social Club – the assault left her so shaken that she began wearing a purple wig and shades to hide her features.

But she transcended the attack, to the point where for the first time, she sings on record. Her new album A Woman With a Purple Wig is streaming at Bandcamp. She’s playing Bar Lunatico on Nov 30 at 9 PM.

On the album, Yamamoto reflects on the grimness of 2020, but also offers hope for the future. She opens the first track, Challenge, with a series of biting, brooding arpeggios over the low-key, lithe groove of bassist David Ambrosio and drummer Ikuo Takeuchi. With a calm determination, she expands from the center, building almost imperceptibly to a handful of jaunty flourishes. Takeuchi churns around as Yamamoto chooses her spots and then returns with a sober baroque focus before handing off to Ambrosio’s punching, dancing lines.

“One day I bought a wig on the internet, my favorite color,” she sings over a brisk, tightly wound stroll on the album’s title track: “Only twenty bucks…did you know that a purple wig has a special power?” Sarcasm reaches redline until Yamamoto runs the song’s chilling central mantra: it will resonate with anyone who’s been targeted for violence. It’s impossible to think of a more powerful jazz song released this year.

Ends to Start reflects Yamamoto’s hope that we will emerge from the ongoing reign of terror to create a better world, the intricate piano/bass polyrhythms in a tight interweave as Takeuchi shifts subtly between waltz time and a steady clave. Again, Yamamoto’s lines are spacious and reflective, up to a puckish crescendo and an eventual;y restrained majesty following a flurrying bass solo.

She returns to the mic for Colors Are Beautiful, a slow, catchy, allusively gospel-tinged singalong salute to ethnic diversity. Her gentle but bright oldschool soul riffage quickly falls away for a hushed bass solo over misty cymbals as Sounds of Peace gets underway, then she works through a pensive series of gospel-inspired variations.

Track six is titled Shout, a sleekly undulating, blues-infused number with lively extrovert drums. Yamamoto closes the album with Internal Beat, her most complex and animated postbop-style tune here, fueled by Takeuchi’s colorful accents.

Pianist Mike Holober’s Lavish, Dynamic Song Cycle Offers Optimism and Positivity When We Really Need It

Pianist Mike Holober is best known as a composer of picturesque, often breathtaking big band jazz. But along with his role creating cinematic charts for the NDR Bigband, he’s also a jazz songwriter. Fortuitously, he managed to record his latest album, Don’t Let Go live in concert at Aaron Davis Hall uptown in the fall of 2019, right around the same time that Event 201 was taking place. A project for his Balancing Act septet, it’s a lavish fourteen-part song cycle streaming at Sunnyside Records. Holober is providing an rare, intimate look at how this sausage gets made in a duo set with soprano saxophonist Charles Pillow at Mezzrow on Nov 30, with sets at 7:30 and 9 PM. Cover is $25 cash at the door.

Needless to say, this symphonically thematic suite seems very prescient considering what’s transpired over the last 32 months. It begins with Breathe Deep, a lustrous dawn theme in the shape of a gently syncopated canon, Holober’s piano slowly taking over from Marvin Stamm’s trumpet, Dick Oatts’ alto sax, Jason Rigby’s tenor sax and Mark Patterson’s trombone. Chanteuse Jamile takes centerstage to introduce the first of the songs, Morning Hope, a challenge to wake up, question, and “clear away the lies.” Holober’s piano foreshadows that promise, handing off to Mike McGuirk’s dancing bass solo over drummer Dennis Mackrel’s lithe, muted rimshots. Bright, balmy trumpet and warmly cantering piano against hazy vocalese fill out an optimistic picture.

Jamile offers wise advice to stay on the side of love in Four-Letter Words, a verdantly swaying, syncopated number, Oatts’ solo outlasting a bit of a storm. He switches to soprano for a blazing intro to Kiss the Ground, a bnrner with circling horn riffage over driving pedalpoint: “It ain’t coming round again,” Jamile warns before Mackrel takes it out unexpectedly.

Burnin’ Daylight begins warily, then brightens with Patterson’s spacious solo over an altered latin groove, Holober returning to an earlier, casually determined theme, Jamile cautioning us to keep our eye on the ball. There’s a similar trajectory from unease to distantly New Orleans-flavored ebullience in A Summer Midnight’s Dream. Necessary, the conclusion, allusively speaks to issues of personal sovereignty over a pouncing, icepick rhythm, with incisive solos from trombone and the saxes

Holober opens the second disc with I Wonder, his judicious, icily Messiaen-tinged solo introducing a slightly more driving variation on the initial cantering theme as Jamile channels her refusal to concede to fear. Although You’re a Long Way from Home has folksy, pastoral tinges, the unease persists despite Patterson’s genial, low-key solo.

Mackrel’s misty brushes underpin Holober’s spacious piano, Jamile tracing a trail of betrayal in You Never Know, Stamm adding a bittersweet, lingering solo as the rhythm subtly shifts into swing. Smile Slow, a summery interlude for Holober and Rigby, sets up Letting Go, a lilting, bossa-tinged ballad with a judicious but opaque soprano sax solo at the center.

Holober weaves the first disc’s jumping final theme into Touch the Sky, with more of a tropical bounce and a lively two-sax conversation: it’s the album’s most entertaining number. The concert ends with Don’t Let Go, Jamile asserting that “Things are better than they seem” and holding out hope over Holober’s tersely undulating melody, Rigby bringing in an inviting, final cloud cover. More jazz artists should make live albums like this one.

Gorgeous, Purist Rock Tunesmithing and an East Village Gig From the Bastards of Fine Arts

Rock supergroups in New York are in short supply right now, but the Bastards of Fine Arts are at the top of the list. Guitarists Matt Keating and Steve Mayone are connoisseurs of classic songcraft, from powerpop to Americana to soul. And it’s impossible to think of a more colorful, melodic rhythm section than bassist Jason Mercer and drummer Greg Wieczorek. Keating and Mayone got their start as a duo. After putting out a series of viral videos on a certain social media platform that this blog boycotts, they survived the 2020 lockdown to release their debut album, A Good Sign, streaming at Bandcamp. They’re playing 11th St. Bar on Nov 30 at 8 PM.

They open with Hardest Part, a gorgeous, slowly swaying anthem that would fit in perfectly with the late 90s Jayhawks catalog, right down to the vocal harmonies. The way Mercer winds his way up out of the last chorus is a characteristic, luscious touch.

Track two, Take the Fall, is a punchy Keating take on vintage Lou Reed. The band add strings from violin superstar Claudia Chopek and organ from Keating in Happens All the Time, a tale of abandonment which winds from wry to absolutely vindictive: the ending is way too good to give away.

Mayone moves to banjo for the front porch Americana-tinged waltz Enough to Make You Cry. They stick with 3/4 and Mayone on banjo as they pick up the pace with Any Old Town, a cynical glimpse of rust belt anomie.

Row Away, an elegy, features a glimmering noctural interweave between Keating’s electric piano and Mayone’s sinuous lead work. Then the band kick in harder with the snidely strutting, ragtime-inflected Can’t Get My Head Around It.

They remake an earlier slow song, A Walk in the Park, as briskly chugging mid 70s British pub rock. Hole in One is brooding 60s soul through the prism of Abbey Road Beatles – right down to the watery analog chorus guitar patch, plus some neat tarantella work from Chopek and the rest of the crew..

Comin’ Home, a hushed folk-rock tune, celebrates a return from California to a now-vanished New York: these days it’s six of one, half a dozen of another. What a beautiful time it was when a song like this made you feel at home.

Keating takes over on gospel piano in You on My Arm. Next up, the band blend punchy Keith Richards riffage into a big Jayhawks-style anthem in the album’s title track.

Keating slows down for Kids, a wryly amusing look at trans-generational angst (incidentally, he is very good at the generational stuff: his daughter Greta is a similarly sharp, melodic multi-instrumentlist and songwriter). The group close the record on a benedictory note with a wee hours saloon blues tune of sorts, Lucky Stars.

A Colorful, Frequently Rapturous Brooklyn Celebration of Yuko Fujiyama’s Music

Last night at Roulette an innovative, inspired cast of Japanese and Americana musicians played a fascinating salute to Yuko Fujiyama, concluding a two-night stand in celebration of the composer and pianist’s individualistic work. The dynamic shifts from animated, incisive, typically somewhat minimalist melodies, to hushed rapture and occasional controlled pandemonium, mirrored a distinctly Japanese sensibility more than the tonalities did.

Solo behind the drumkit, Tetsu Nagasawa opened the evening with an elegant hailstorm on the cymbals. Slowly moving to a coyly noirish rattle, he reached toward gale force, lashing the shoreline before descending to a muted rain on the roof that eventually drifted away. Following a steady, rather hypnotic upward trajectory, he then brought the ambience down to a hushed, shamanic ambience spiced with majestic cymbal washes.

Pianist Sylvie Courvoisier then joined him, adding a few judicious plucks over a distant rustle before introducing a staggered, minimalist pedalpoint. Eerie clusters alternated with simple, emphatic rhythmic gestures. Nagasawa signaled a detour into a flickering jungle; a good cop/bad cop high-lo dynamic ensued over a circular rumble. Courvoisier pounced and threw elbows, then she coalesced into a climb that mirrored the opening drum solo as it decayed to silence.

After the intermission, a cross-pollinated ensemble of Do Yeon Kim on gayageum (the magical, warptoned Korean zither), Satoshi Takeishi on drums, Ned Rothenberg on reeds and Shoko Nagai on piano took over with an improvisation that began with a little furtive prowling around and grew more agitated, Kim’s circling riffs leading the way up to an insistent, pansori-like vocal attack.

A bit of a blizzard gave way to rapturous deep-space washes fueled by Rothenberg’s desolate clarinet, Nagai adding icily spacious glimmer. Gently skipping piano anchored crystalline clarinet curlicues, Rothenberg and Nagai converging in dark circles as the other two musicians looked on but eventually edged their way in. Trails of sparks flickered off; Nagai, who’d moved to a small synth, hit a backwards loop pedal; the spaceship reappeared and everyone got in but chaos ensued anyway.

Rothenberg’s eventual decision to pick up his shakuhachi brought a return to woodsy mysticism, from which Nagai, back on piano, led the ensemble on a long scramble. A cantering forward drive and an unexpected turn into neoromantic rivulets grew grittier as Nagai brought the music to a forceful coda.

For the night’s concluding number, Fujiyama took over on piano, bolstered by additional flute and trumpet, with Nagai moving to accordion. Yuma Uesaka conducted. A brief, lustrous introduction set up Fujiyama’s judicious, otherworldly, Messiaenic ripples: mournful late 50s Miles Davis came to mind.

Pensive trumpet amid gingerly romping piano and an uneasy haze were followed by Kim’s graceful bends. which introduced an interlude that quickly grew squirrelly and eventually frantic.

Rothenberg’s emergence as voice of reason was temporary. Uesaka stopped the works, then restarted them as more of a proper upward vector, with flutters from the flutes and two drummers. The allusive charge down to a final drift through the clouds made a fittingly magical conclusion.

The next concert at Roulette is November 27 at 8 PM with John Zorn’s New Masada Quintet; you can get in for $35 in advance.

Five Times August’s Silent War: The Best Rock Album of 2022

Akin to his predecessors Woody Guthrie and Phil Ochs, songwriter Five Times August burst on the scene in 2020 playing solo acoustic at freedom rallies. Over the last couple of years, his hilarious videos have gone viral, to the point where he’s probably the most popular protest singer in the US. Another reason for that popularity is that he’s a hell of a songwriter. The man known to some as Brad Skistimas has finally assembled those songs on a full-length album, Silent War, streaming at Bandcamp. This lyrically scorching, often seethingly funny record isn’t just the best album of 2022: Five Times August brings receipts. Time may judge this a classic, as important and vivid a portrait of an era as the Dead Kennedys’ Frankenchrist.

The songs are straightforward and uncluttered to an extreme, mostly just vocals and acoustic guitar. The cheery bounce of the opening track, God Help Us All is a stark contrast to the torrent of cynical rhymes for a time of reality inversion and mass psychosis:

Citizen fools and brand new rules make everyone a hero now
Keep your distance, no resistance, only do what you’re allowed…
See no evil, bow to the needle, didn’t we turn out great?
Sick is the new health, poor is the new wealth, truth is whatever they say…
Divide and conquer, weak not stronger, everybody know your place
Do it now, it won’t hurt, dig into your own dirt, virtue found its grave

Skistimas has remade his viral hit Jesus… What Happened to Us? with a lot more energy as well. It’s less of a lament than searing cautionary tale:

Mark, Jack, Bill, Joe, they’ll teach you what you need to know,
They’ll give you your permissions and tell you where to go…
Shut your mouth, get in line, just behave or pay the fine
They’re pulling on your backbone and taking out your spine

The album’s funniest video hit is Outtayerdaminde, a rapidfire litany of Libs of Tiktok narcissism and buffoonery. Then Skistimas reaches for a scampering acoustic Dylan vibe in I Will Not Be Leaving Quietly, a defiant clapalong anthem.

This blog picked the solemnly waltzing title track as the best song of 2021, and it’s aged tragically well:

They’ve covered your mouth and tied back your hands
They did it to all of the kids
And nobody knows all the damage it’s done
And won’t ask until the master permits…
Take back your freedom and fight for your life, stand up before it’s all gone

Track six, simply titled Joe, is a venomous front-porch folk variant on a folk song that Jimi Hendrix immortalized, referencing the pullout from Afghanistan, the 2020 election and the perils inherent in having a guy with late-stage Alzheimer’s in the Oval Office. The ending is too good to give away.

Sad Little Man, probably the only bestselling single to ever appear on this page, is a creepy, tiptoeing portrait of the career bureaucrat who conspired with Jeremy Farrar and the British MI5 gestapo to launch the plandemic in 2020.

Skistimas hits a Subterranean Homesick drive in Anti-Fascist Blues, a full-band go-go blues broadside targeting cancel culture: “Make yourself a slave until you think that you’re free, dig yourself a grave for the American dream.”

This Just In is a defiant shout-out the Canadian truckers – and the funniest, most spot-on portrait of Justin Trudeau ever written. Likewise, Fight For You is tender but resolute: love during the most hideous holocaust in world history.

The most towering, haunting anthem here is Gates Behind the Bars. It could be the best song of 2022:

The geek’s in control, he’s changed his disguise
His chemical world will be your demise
He’s sick and he’s cruel and acts like he’s God
Speaks on the stage while zombies applaud
The creep’s not alone, he plots with his friends,
The forum they have is a circle of sin
There’s snakes all around who traffic and kill
They’ll dope up the world with needles and pills

Skistimas switches to piano for Lions:

Someday when the truth has been revealed
After all the effort to be healed
You will see the wounded everywhere you go
So wake up with the lions, don’t let yourself stay asleep

He winds up the album with a couple of bonus covers, a stripped-down version of the Tom Petty hit I Won’t Back Down and a Guthrie-esque Star Spangled Banner.

Thanks to the world’s #1 “misinformation spreader,” Steve Kirsch for the heads-up about this one.