CaPC Playlist: Lauryn Hill, Brand New, Agent Ribbons, Brett Dennen, and Vespers

Brief thoughts on songs that are on CaPC writers’ playlists. You can check out this week’s playlist on Spotify here.

“Neurotic Society (Compulsory Mix)” —Lauryn Hill

Lauryn Hill’s fierce raps look to fight against a litany of the world’s problems stemming from what is stated in the penultimate line “this godless neurotic society.”

We’re living in a joke time, metaphorical coke time
Commerce and guru men, run the whole world man
Old drunken debauchery, old world brutality
Cold world kills softly, whole world runs savagely
Reading into prior things, program TV screens
Quick scam and drag queens, real likely to blast fiends
Think twice and past dreams, crime if you ask clean
Quick fast, the poison has entered the blood stream
Psychological master, consequences of tragedy
Mythological characters, men and women is parody
Superficial vanity, borderline insanity
Out of order humanity, crime committed so passively
Desperados and casualties, corporations want batteries
Explanations of strategies, domination and mastery
Own in the bankrupt, grown people so corrupt
Light swords and yellow men, junkies in popularity
Culture so independent, vultures scavenge reality
Past feeling depravity to kings social cavity
Prey on human ignorance, popular immorality
Sympathy disease head, population misled
Self indulgent past dead, absence of the God head
Pimps, pushers and harlotry
Nepotism, no artistry
Despotism and privacy
Desperation, dishonesty
Physicist is your policy, more money, less equality
Inflated global ego, imitating reality
Fuel cycle pharaoh, poisonous poison arrows
Hypocritics on salary, idle hands that was agency
Predisposed to complacency, jealousy, and audacity
Contagious social gluttony, stages of mass malignancy
Effort to make conception, generation in atrophy
Glam life in debt, scam life in editors
Byproducts of neglect children hiding from creditors
Absence of self respect, fully scared of competitors
Lifestyle of luxury at someone’s expense
Sensitive children, used up and sacrificed
Blind to the consequence, smoked up on dope pipes
Ecstasy, fast life, recklessly past life
Narcotics and cash fight, just neurotic society
Benefactors turned actors, addictions triple captors
Experience manufactures just neurotic toxic society

It’s like post-war, they’re looking for the Communists or who the Marxists is
Ten thousand pictures on Facebook, it’s like the pot calling the kettle narcissist
Come on really, saying it’s the devil, but you’re the chief arsonist
Hypocrites can’t even see their own part in this
No reflection, vampire paradigm
No introspect, break down
Three months before pure obsession, picture can’t take down
Children, this a shake down, they just looking for a sacrifice
They’ve been doing this since before Bobby Darin sang Mack the Knife
Before James Dean’s car did a jackknife
Perhaps it’s because they lack life or lack guts
Never confuse the head with the butt
Opinions are like ********* and most of ‘em stink
I was told by a woman, so rethink
Don’t ever let them ever lead you to drink
Leave you to doubt
Lead you to fall, get up, stand up, pass Lucifer out
Shake it up baby, watch them twist it and shout
Insecure ********* looking for a ticket
To ride on somebody like the picket
It’s ******* wicked, shame on ‘em
This neurotic toxic society

Sick cycle psychology in desperate need of psychiatry
Exorcism, sobriety, forcing social lobotomies
People stuck in dichotomies, pseudo-sicko anxieties
Serial criminals dressed in variety
Social transvestisms, subliminal dressed up as piety
Transforms projections like Cartesian images
Robbing innocence, stealing inheritance
Quiet victims with no defense portrayed over dollars and cents
Maladjusted ignorant malediction and dissonance
Too much addiction, no consciousness
Don’t trust it, this cosmology is busted
Broken returns to the dusted, stems of corruption
Oppression, deceit, abuse and repeat
They don’t feel complete unless they’re robbing the sheep
Man is not a product if you call it that then stop it
In this neurotic godless society

“Jesus Christ” —Brand New

This song questions if Jesus was enough to cover all our sins and recognizes that all of us are responsible for Jesus’ death on the cross. We are the ones who continually hammer the nails into Jesus’ hands and lift Him up on the cross . . . but what the singer misses is that Jesus gladly laid down His life for us.

Jesus Christ, that’s a pretty face
The kind you’d find on someone I could save
If they don’t put me away
Well, it’ll be a miracle

Do you believe you’re missin’ out
That everything good is happening somewhere else?
But with nobody in your bed
The night’s hard to get through

And I will die all alone
And when I arrive I won’t know anyone

Well, Jesus Christ, I’m alone again
So what did you do those three days you were dead?
’cause this problem’s gonna last more than the weekend.

Well, Jesus Christ, I’m not scared to die,
I’m a little bit scared of what comes after
Do I get the gold chariot?
Do I float through the ceiling?

Do I divide and fall apart?
’cause my bright is too slight to hold back all my dark
And the ship went down in sight of land
And at the gates does Thomas ask to see my hands

I know you’re coming in the night like a thief
But I’ve had some time, O Lord, to hone my lying technique
I know you think that I’m someone you can trust
But I’m scared I’ll get scared and I swear I’ll try to nail you back up

So do you think that we could work out a sign
So I’ll know it’s you and that it’s over so I won’t even try

I know you’re coming for the people like me
But we all got wood and nails
And we turn out hate in factories
We all got wood and nails
And we turn out hate in factories
We all got wood and nails
And we sleep inside of this machine

“Chelsea, Let’s Go Join the Circus” —Agent Ribbons

No deeper meaning here, just a catchy, fun song combining a punk rock attitude with a vocal line akin to a jazz standard.

“Someday” —Brett Dennen

Jewel Evans had this to say about the song: “Dennen’s song ‘Someday’ is an honest expression of one’s longing for something other than the struggles of this world. He then goes on to mention that his ‘salvation is ahead of him.’ For the Christian, we can resonate with Dennen’s message, knowing that because of Christ our struggles in this world will have an end, and in that we have hope.”

Yeah
In the womb of winter, summer seems a myth
In my desperation I throw my faith into the wind
Born to a world where it is a fight just to fit in
From the cradle to the grave, it never ends

Someday, someday in a cloud of gray
I will, I’ll make my great escape

So many ways to walk upon the earth
I trace my footsteps to the place of my birth
So what do you do with all your precious time
So many ways in which to reach for the sky

Someday, someday in a cloud of gray
I will, I’ll make my great escape
Someday, someday in a cloud of gray
I will, I’ll make my great escape

Say, little bit by little bit, someday

I may be weary but I am not weak
I can sing a song of suffering
Maybe a song unsung is dancing on the tip of your tongue
My salvation’s ahead of me
I can feel it calling me
I know that I, I know that I will be ready

Someday, someday in a cloud of gray
I will, I’ll make my great escape
Someday, someday in a cloud of gray
I will, I’ll make my great escape

“Better Now” —Vespers

According to Jewel Evans, this song is “a re-telling of the story in Scripture of the man born blind, a simple reminder of one’s blindness of heart and Jesus’ power to heal and save the soul.”

Momma says I cant be healed

Papa says I’m through
they say I can’t use my eyes
they’ll never be as good as new

Oh but I’m better now
why do you shake your head no
oh and I met a man oh and he saved my soul

You don’t believe me when I say
the one you knew was blind
but Jesus told me he’s the light and Jesus healed my eyes
oh but I’m better now
why do you shake your head no
Oh and I met a man oh and he saved my soul

You ask I again and again
don’t you believe
Lift up your blinded heart, He’ll help you see
you could be better now
Why do you shake your head no

Oh and I’m better now
Oh and he saved my soul
You could be better now
Oh and don’t shake your head no
Oh and I’m better now, and he saved my soul

Oh and he saved my soul (x2)

About Matthew Linder

Matthew Linder is a music professor at National University, married and father of a 2-year-old daughter. He loves Jesus, the Church, biblical theology, and of course, music but despises ketchup. While he appreciates a wide variety of musical styles, he prefers hip-hop, metal, and classical but could live without 90s Christian music. Follow Matthew on Twitter @TheRetuned.


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