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Old 22-02-2018, 11:54 PM   #2116
fabripav
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Well I've been news free for 8 months now and I'm happier than I've been in a long time.
Why? How were you able to find happiness that way?
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Old 23-02-2018, 02:46 AM   #2117
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It depends on the song though, I guess. I don't mind the occasional song like MK Ultra because I don't really take it seriously, but then there's simpler stuff like Uprising that just feels like there's hardly any depth to it. Maybe it's because I prefer songs that don't really feel like they're referring to a particular time or any political situation, so the lyrics for me would be more abstract. Matt's talked about wanting to make timeless music recently, but unfortunately his lyrics are going the other way. They're becoming more and more derivative of whatever he thinks he's seeing on the news, which lyrically then usually puts me off any band.
MK Ultra is a real thing that happened, though. And I think it's done pretty well.
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Old 23-02-2018, 06:40 AM   #2118
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I want to second what Little Animal hinted at and extend what I mentioned before regarding the news and marginalized people, because I have mostly in the past few years drifted away from TV and a lot of their online counterparts in favor of something more curated to what I at least consider to be respectable quality.

Had I remained with the standard TV news cycle, which is still massively popular, I do think I would have a much different and more fearful view of the world. This is at least based off the times I do end up in front of a standard news program. There was the mention that ignoring problems is how Trump got elected, but I also remember how much attention Trump got back when he was just entering the race because his controversy got more views. I remember how every time I'd see a major station cover anything tech related it made me question how idiotic they could sound to topics I know less of. I remember how in the aftermath of Charlottesville I saw more features on antifa, because they're scary and masked despite having no centralization or major political influence.

Even recently I notice the nationwide shock as high schoolers ask politicians about their ties to the NRA while remembering the stations now covering this were then more interested in spamming the kids for photo credits while being shot at.

I don't discredit the field as the administration has done, because there's plenty of counter-examples to what I gave. But behind it all I don't get the feeling I'd really be informed. It feels more like the news is selling outrage and debate rather than properly engaging with it. It leaves the hard questions dumbed down, the biggest problems glossed over, and the final points made just digestible enough that you won't leave your couch.

In this regard I would agree more with the Muse song, but with the addition to engage yourself more instead of less. Maybe Bellamy would agree, but there's honestly not nearly enough out there to get a true stance out of him. Here I'm more replying to other users.
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Old 23-02-2018, 12:50 PM   #2119
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At this point, the conversation has become much more to do with Matt’s irreverent public attitude in promo interviews etc. than the actual lyrics of Thought Contagion. There isn’t a specific implication in the song that if you turn off the news you might find the world more bearable. It seems to be a much more general comment on “the spread of dangerous ideas”, as mentioned on Absolute Radio. Matt even seemed to acknowledge (in passing) that he’d struggled to find as neat an explanation in previous interviews - and I’d agree with others that he was a little careless.

Matt’s always been pretty vague and taken a scattershot approach to these sorts of subject, though. It’s likely that if he was pushed for more detail on the source of whatever “dangerous ideas” he’s discussing, he’d include agenda-driven figures in the public sphere, politicians, preachers, conspiracy theorists … right the way through to some of the individuals we encounter in everyday life - abusive personalities, ‘emotional vampires’ and so on. It’s about corruptibility - the extent to which we’re susceptible to paranoia, neurosis and faulty thinking, as far as I can tell. Any instance where a person becomes conscious of creeping thoughts and doubts sown by others - adopting dumbed-down theories as their own, getting drawn into toxic language games - repeating and spreading popular jargon, psychobabble and invented phrases (i.e. “thought contagion” itself and some of the others I’ve used in this message ).

I'm not necessarily defending all of the lyrics - just trying to make a distinction!

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Old 23-02-2018, 04:37 PM   #2120
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The lyrics are so vague we only really have Matt's explanation on what they're supposed to mean.
Stuff like "Withdraw before you're out of time, a clean slate" also support his explanation.

It's a complex, sensitive issue that doesn't lend itself well to being dealt with in a song anyways.

Plus, if we ignore what he's said about the song and just pay attention to the lyrics, we're back to that "final solution" line.
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Old 23-02-2018, 05:57 PM   #2121
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Plus, if we ignore what he's said about the song and just pay attention to the lyrics, we're back to that "final solution" line.
Haha quite! I almost ended my post with that exact disclaimer
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Old 23-02-2018, 09:03 PM   #2122
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I always kinda see Matt --because he went straight from high school to being a rockstar-- as someone who hasnít developed beyond the intellectual mindset of a high school student. His lyrics have always reminded me of a teenagerís scribbles in the sidelines of a notebook. I think this innocence and almost romantic intuitive adolescent rebellion against the Man were a major part of Museís charm in the beginning. They were an abstract relatable sentiment expressed in an abstract manner, that was therefore accessible even to those who didn't share whatever literal thoughts Matt was thinking at the time.

That charm has faded now and I think it's largely because it seems like Matt still tries to deliver a social commentary, but now from an intellectual viewpoint rather than a gut feeling. And intellectually it just falls short. I'm not saying Matt's not smart, I'm just saying his views are just not that developed or original or interesting or thought-provoking. Add to that that the quality of the lyrics hasn't developed beyond the teenager's scribbles, accept that they're now much more literal, so it's hard to just enjoy them based on a feeling alone, you're kind of forced now to consider what he's trying to say. Especially when he delivers it in such a deliberate, almost spoken-word like manner like he does in Thought Contagion.

Musically, I think something similar is happening. When they were younger, they were working with a skill set that was much more limited than what they're capable of now. So they had to squeeze and exploit that skill set and make it louder, more expressive and focus on the bits that set them apart from the rest (the riffs, the classically inspired piano, the screaming falsetto, the guitar wankery). Even if the intention wasn't genuine and it was a ploy to get popular back then as well, they only had their own originality and expression available to them to make that work. But now that they have developed the ability and means to emulate pretty much any genre they either admire themselves or they wish to copy for popularity's sake, they've just lost the need to express or amplify their own genuine and original qualities.

PS. Before you go there, don't tell me I'm one of those people who just wants them to make OoS or Absolution over and over again. That's nonsense. They can do whatever they want. I'm just expressing what's missing for me to relate to and therefore (fully) enjoy their music.
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Old 23-02-2018, 09:56 PM   #2123
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I mean, he was 20 when they first started getting record deals - 21 by the time Showbiz came out. Not that you donít get people that age who havenít matured past teenagers yet (believe me, I know) but he wasnít a kid. Even then he didnít really start expressing political views through lyrics until, what, Ď03/4? So, 24/25?

Either way, I donít think age really has owt to do with it tbh.
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Old 23-02-2018, 11:25 PM   #2124
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He's just an idiot.
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Old 24-02-2018, 02:20 AM   #2125
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I mean, he was 20 when they first started getting record deals - 21 by the time Showbiz came out. Not that you donít get people that age who havenít matured past teenagers yet (believe me, I know) but he wasnít a kid. Even then he didnít really start expressing political views through lyrics until, what, Ď03/4? So, 24/25?

Either way, I donít think age really has owt to do with it tbh.
They didn't go on to be rockstars instantly, but that was their main focus, also in the period between forming and getting signed. They continued on a path and mindset that started in school.
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Old 24-02-2018, 06:02 AM   #2126
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Depending on what you consider "political," Matt's been dealing with it pretty much since the beginning, but the wild stuff usually came up in interviews and the lyrics were a lot more abstract.
Hell, he's been dealing with concerns about the Internet and technology since New Born.

The older songs just felt more personal, about someone's feelings dealing with the subjects.

Now they feel either like a lecture, or like someone's writing a song about current events to get attention, but doesn't really give a shit.

And his lyrics come across like someone who has only a vague interest in the topics he claims to be writing about, or they're based on a book he didn't fully understand.
It hasn't felt like he's had much connection to what he's writing about since TR, and his attitude in the TC interviews seem to confirm that. Probably a good explanation of what's been missing since that album; there's just no heart.

Still a bit wild that someone who's built a career on being seen as some crazy conspiracy theory nut, when something finally IS happening in both countries he lives in, comes out and says it's nothing to worry about. Like pulling the curtain back and the wizard is just some middle aged dude in a sequined jacket reading the backflaps on non-fiction books.

He needs to stick to generic relationship songs. They're what tend to work out for them on the charts, anyways.

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Old 24-02-2018, 08:33 AM   #2127
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His conspiracy ramblings were over a decade ago and even during The Resistance era he was moving away from it. Probably when he realized how it was making him look.
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Old 24-02-2018, 09:12 AM   #2128
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People sure are inferring a lot in this thread.
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Old 24-02-2018, 09:41 AM   #2129
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Yeah, I'm pissed about Matt's explanation, even if I didn't get that that's what he was talking about in the lyrics. Either way, the lyrics still piss me off because of that casually thrown in Final Solution line.

In the Guardian webchat Matt puts his take on the news coverage slightly differently and, -perhaps more worryingly- it sounds like he's with Trump in essentially calling CNN and MSNBC "Fake News" by asserting that they don't provide evidence to back up their reporting and are influencing a group of people who 'don't want empirical evidence applied to their belief systems'. I'm sure he's not 100% wrong about that, but he would be 100% right if he had singled out Fox News, rather than journalistic outlets that are already under siege from the liars in charge of the country and are (empirically proven to be) more accurate in their reporting.

I mean, how can Matt, who runs with the nonsense conspiracy theorists toss at him all the time, now have a point to make about people not requiring empirical evidence in forming their opinions?

The one thing I'll agree with him on is that there's no need for 24/7 Trump coverage. To me more legitimate critique of CNN and MSNBC would be that they're commercial operations going for the ratings and therefore keep reporting on Trump as often as they can, because love him or hate him, he's ratings gold.

Anyway, below is Matt's quote from the webchat I'm referring to.
I'm behind on this thread so apologies if it's already been addressed, but I disagree with this. CNN may not be Fox News, but ever since the election they've been giving these Trump people a platform, and have always tried to make out that both sides are equal. I think Matt was referring to the pundits you see on CNN who are trying to push either the Trump or overall Republican agenda. Even the Democrats on CNN were trying to give Trump the benefit of the doubt for a while. Still don't forgive Van Jones for that ridiculous "Today he was Presidential" comment. MSNBC may be liberal, but they also had a strong Clinton agenda and showed bias against Bernie Sanders. In that sense I think it's fair to call out all of them, but obviously the degree to which they're dangerous varies.

My problem with mainstream news is that it winds people up about the wrong things. Like the way Jeremy Corbyn has been treated, and they rarely give a platform to those who need it most. They probably would've moved on from the Parkland shooting by now or focused on the shooter if it wasn't for the students.

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Old 24-02-2018, 10:10 AM   #2130
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My problem with mainstream news is that it winds people up about the wrong things. Like the way Jeremy Corbyn has been treated, and they rarely give a platform to those who need it most. They probably would've moved on from the Parkland shooting by now or focused on the shooter if it wasn't for the students.
This was my point earlier but worded much better so thank you.
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