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MUSIC NEWS | ACTIVISM VIA SOUND: OUR FIRST 100 DAYS

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By Sarah Bel Kloetzke

 

“WITH TRUMP’S FIRST 100 DAYS IN OFFICE UPON US, ACTION MUST BE TAKEN TO PROTECT THE CAUSES THAT WILL COME UNDER THREAT FROM THIS ADMINISTRATION.”

With efforts from Indiana’s Secretly Group and 30 Days, 30 Songs, Our First 100 Days is the right way to use music to make a change. What is it? Our First 100 Days is a compilation of unreleased music from various artists, with one new song being added to the Bandcamp every day for the first 100 days of Donald Trump’s presence in the presidential office.

You can buy all 100 songs for a minimum donation of just $30, which will go to organizations for causes threatened by the Trump administration: The People’s Climate Movement, All Above All, Cosecha, Southerners On New Ground, Hoosier Action, and Revolutions Per Minute.

The first song on the compilation, released on Inauguration Day, is the track “Fly On Your Wall” from Angel Olsen, a tune that seethes melancholy, just as haunting as her signature voice. The song builds, guided by a steady drum beat, to something that sounds like a declaration. I picture Olsen as a soldier marching out to war, setting the perfect scene for the compilation.

The next day we were blessed with “Vacation” from PWR BTTM—a song that doesn’t sound like anything else the New York duo have released, in the best way possible. “Vacation” is about “…a particular feeling of people hanging over you…trying to control you with their power” the band told Upset Magazine. The instrumentals are very simple, accompanying the almost monotone voice of Ben Hopkins, perfectly conveying a feeling of hopelessness and depression. Then, very suddenly, the song explodes into a labyrinth of sound (and as a warning, it gets very loud very fast.) Can I can I can I get a break, get a vacation?! Hopkins yells again and again, his voice bleeding with desperation in the chaos, and suddenly it’s all over.

The third track is from Avey Tare of Animal Collective: “Visit The Dojo (Slasher Flicks Demo).” The demo’s beginning sounds like the intro of a different Animal Collective song that I love, “Prospect Hummer.” But it sounds like that intro if it was being born of some post-apocalyptic steampunk nightmare factory where workers are being oppressed by rogue robots. Y’know? Or maybe I’m wrong for hearing a resemblance at all. After pressing play again I realize that nightmare factory is just the vibe of the entire song, and I’m cool with it. It’s definitely, definitely worth a listen if you’re into spooky stuff.

Other contributors to Our First 100 Days are Toro Y Moi, Mitski, Tim Heidecker, Cherry Glazerr, Into It. Over It., The Mountain Goats, Twin Peaks, and many others. I’m looking forward to seeing what other great music comes from this compilation, and the fact that it’s for a more-than-worthy cause just makes it all better. You can find the comp here, and Our First 100 Days’ website here.

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