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Best "Social Commentary songs"

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Yeah, so as the title says, what are the best songs with a message, in your opinion?

Sure, stuff like Holiday, American Idiot and the like will be mentioned...but I'm going to avoid those

"The Future is X-Rated" by Matthew Good Band. This is a song that is ridden with metaphors, but it gets a point across...the video compliments it nicely, and really makes you (well, at least, me) think. Then again, you could fill in just about any song by Matthew Good Band in this spot (Hello Timebomb, Strange Days, Load Me Up) and say the same thing.

"Bleed American" by Jimmy Eat World doesn't get mention for lists like this, but I think it should...The whole idea of "Sign up: The Picket Line or the Parade" and "I'm not alone 'cuz the TV's on" is sort of a commentary on North American culture...I likes it :)

"Imagine" by John Lennon is a bit of an obvious choice...the ideals of peace and love and caring in place of hurt, pain and war is still a novel idea to some people. Controversial, surely, because of the religion line, but still a good pick.

"99 Red Balloons" by Nena. A bit annoying, yes, but it still means a lot. I mean, it looks at the cold war very frankly, and reminds you that these are still people...sure, they're communists, but people nonetheless. It illustrates the paranoia of the time nicely.

That's all I'm going to give for now...what are yours?

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21st Century Living

Alert Status Red

In A World Called Catastrophe

North American For Life

Pledge Of Alligence

Lullaby For The New World Order

While We Were Hunting Rabbits

Advertising On Police Cars


Strange Days

The Future Is X-Rated

Symbolistic White Walls

Last Of The Ghetto Astronauts

All songs by Matthew Good\Matthew Good Band.

They contain a certain degree if social commentary, or are all social commentary.

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It depends on what you mean by Social Commentary. Things with a geopolitical feel, things commenting on lower level societal interaction, globalization, a train station? Every song I listen to makes a point about something. How important that something is is left to the stake of the listenener, and thereby varies in social importance with the person in question's stake in the issue.

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Basically anything by Hatebreed. Most of their songs talk about how people should be themselves, and not fall victim to the pressure put on them by society.

I Am The New York Times by Bucket Truck; talks about US mass media.

Counting Bodies Like Sheep To The Rythm of the War Drums (A Perfect Circle) and Ether (Nothingface) talk about the war in Iraq (I'm aware there are thousands of these kinds of songs, but I find these are better then many others).

A lot of stuff by Otep talks about female equality.

Rage Against The Machine. I don't even need to explain them.

Amerika by Rammstein talks about American globalization.

Soulfly and Sepultura have a large amount of politically based songs, like Rage does. (same vocalist for both bands).

If you agree or not, Slipknot has several songs which talk about kids being themselves and not listening to others.

System of a Down falls under the same category as Rage does.

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The Dead Kennedys are a good example of writing songs with a social commentary. They use a wide range of topics from politics, poverty, social issues, and even songs dealing with school issues. I like that a lot of their songs are written so that Jello Biafra is actually singing from the villian's point of view, but done so in an ironic way. It's a nice change of pace from the "Fuck the system, lying politicians" style of political writing. Of course, some of their songs do use that formula, the majority of their songs use the ironic context.

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Refused; "New Noise"

"It's here for us to admire if we can afford the beauty of it

If we can afford the luxury of turning our heads

Adjust the $1000 smile and behold the creation of man

Great words won't cover ugly actions

Good frames won't save bad paintings"

Sage Francis; "Buzz Kill"

"Emerge from the dust kicked up in the uphill battle

With my guns drawn and sword out

Pointed towards the couthouse

I sort out words from my war torn mouth

I disassociate the actions with their meanings

On some "ends justify the means" mentality

Plus I'm bleeding

Give me a bandaid a band that can't play

A fanbase with hearing aids and a voice like a hand grenade"

The (International) Noise Conspiracy; "Smash it Up"

"i want to smash it up for all the kids who, who got fucked up just like their parents did

i want to smash it up, the gods and masters who made us die so much faster

yeah yeah, you know i wanna smash it up

yeah yeah, you know we gotta smash it up

yeah yeah, common pretty smash it up

everybody right now, common everyone

smash it up yeah, when i'm down

i want to smash it up for all the people and for our right to be, to be treated equal

i want to smash it up for all my friends, i hope you stick around until the very end"

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I can't believe it took 11 replies before somebody mentioned Bob Dylan.

You're all fuckwits.

Even Dylan's later stuff has social comment on it to a degree, Love and Theft is especially good, and he's apparently recording a back-to-roots album at the present time which may or may not feature social comment on the current state of affairs.

The Smiths, for the state of Britain.

If you're into modern social discussion through the medium of music, please look up the following...

-- Willy Mason

-- Patrick Wolf

-- Bright Eyes

-- Morrissey

Yes yes.

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