Päter – Fear of the Dead
Genre: Lo-fi Rock, Alternative Rock
There are plenty of terrible times to think about terrible things like …death. If you’re a pilot flying a plane, you don’t want to think about what could happen if you don’t do your job. You certainly don’t want to think about that if you’re a doctor administering treatment. And, well, generally, you won’t get special prizes for bringing the topic up in polite conversation.
The thing is that most societies are built on the idea of continuous growth. This is, of course, false. However, letting people know about the inevitable hard times won’t make you very popular. Explaining these changes as inevitable aspects of existence and, in some ways, even good, can be challenging as well. Perhaps this is why we let our artists deal with the topics we can’t generally talk about.
Päter’s “Fear of the Dead” is an amazingly Earthy-sounding meditation about the ebb and flow of existence. Unlike most rock songs discussing this, it doesn’t deal with the topic of death in a sinister or pessimistic way. You listen to that human voice sing and to the birds chirping, and you start to believe that it’s all part of a greater design, one partially hidden from sight. That’s at least what music can have you think, and that ain’t too bad.
Brent Amaker & the Rodeo – Wanted
Humour is one of the best ways to understand the essence of a place. It’s a brand of humour, and the kind of things at which people will laugh that will give you the best insight into what they’re really like. They’ll show you what they hate and what things they hold sacred. It’ll allow you to approach subjects that might otherwise be considered taboo.
For example, in Eastern European countries, as in most of Latin America, dictatorships might have flourished but were never truly embraced by the people. Instead, it became the subject of thousands of jokes. In Germany, getting a local to laugh at a joke is as rare as a full moon eclipse. And in the U.S., laughing at the things that seem the most serious is a way to deal with them.
Little is more serious back in North America than country music. That in itself puts a big old target on its back. Brent Amaker & the Rodeo are going after it with their single “Wanted.” Were this not a charming, funny tune, this could spell trouble for Amaker. Folks in certain parts of the U.S. view Johnny Cash in the same way that Italians think of the Pope. But get people to hum and chuckle along, and nobody will be able to deny you.