I think the new Andrew Bird single is very good.
It’s called “Atomized.”
The video above has closed captions you can turn on which are correct and in-sync, but here are the lyrics:
They’re gonna try to get a rise
To unseat you
They’ll demagnetize your poles
And you know they’re gonna try to delete you
So now you’re atomized unwhole
You know better start making your apologies
Stop blaming technology
May you please start making your apologies
We’re only human that’s what they tell us
Here’s what I say to them: what is your point?
Here’s what I say to them: things fall apart
Now there’s something in her eyes that completes you
Every time she cries it brings you low
And just the merest sigh can defeat you
How can you be so wise and still not know?
You know better start making your apologies
Stop blaming technology
May you please start making your apologies
The lyrics are superficially about what they are obviously about – “cancel culture” or whatever – but it seems to me there is a lot more there.
“Atomized” was the English name of Michel Houellebecq’s best novel, which I believe is the single most relevant novel of the last 50 years or something. It is sometimes published as “The Elementary Particles,” which is a direct translation of the French. The chorus saying that they tell us “we’re only human,” and he replies “what is your point? Things fall apart,” is clearly a reference to the novel. I won’t spoil the book by explaining it. It’s kind of the ending. Of course if you want to know but don’t read 300-page novels, you can just read the plot summary on Wikipedia. But I shan’t be the one to give it up.
Relating the public situation of all of these people making apologies for things to a man in a relationship not understanding that he’s being controlled by the woman, despite his intelligence, is very good. It’s a similar situation, isn’t it? Maybe it’s identical? We have an utterly feminized culture, and men who are broken by this culture. No one ever won a woman back by apologizing to her, and just so, this society does not forgive people who apologize to it.
Bird is an intellectual, and his lyrics have always been grand, so there are other things that can be implied other than the reference to the book. This claim of “humanity” as an explanation is fundamentally stupid, and yet it is used consistently. An appeal to a spook of “humanity” is the core of “humanism,” which is an ideological movement that overlaps entirely with the main liberal ideology of “democracy” and “human rights.” If you read the Wikipedia entry on humanism, you have to throw away any references to the term pre-Darwin, as before it was an ideology it was a term used by the Greeks and other philosophers to relate individual humans to the divine universe as a whole, the same sort of thing you read in the Church Fathers. It later became an ideology where humans were an end in themselves, and that there is some fundamental meaning to existing as a human. This was necessary as post-Darwin, it was pushed that there was no God and that humans were not different than animals.
The term also relates back to “The Religion of Humanity,” created by Auguste Comte, who was also the inventor of “positivist philosophy.”
That’s really the most important Wiki entry for the background of what I’m trying to communicate here, right now:
Positivism is an empiricist philosophical theory that holds that all genuine knowledge is either true by definition or positive—meaning a posteriori facts derived by reason and logic from sensory experience. Other ways of knowing, such as theology, metaphysics, intuition, or introspection are rejected or considered meaningless.
Although the positivist approach has been a recurrent theme in the history of western thought, modern positivism was first articulated in the early 19th century by Auguste Comte. His school of sociological positivism holds that society, like the physical world, operates according to general laws. After Comte, positivist schools arose in logic, psychology, economics, historiography, and other fields of thought. Generally, positivists attempted to introduce scientific methods to their respective fields.
Positivism is probably more associated now with the Jew Emile Durkheim. He basically invented sociology, and is cited alongside the positivist Jew Sigmund Feud and the “New Hegelian” Jew Karl Marx as a founder of “social science.” This was not actual science. No social science is scientific, because it can’t be scientific. The only psychologists who ever tried to be scientific were the behaviorists, which are dismissed now, despite being able to make dogs salivate at the sound of a bell, which is actually a scientific activity, which unlike every single thing Freud ever wrote, can be repeated. Anyone could get a bunch of dogs and make them salivate at a bell. They could also build a Skinner box, and make rats push levers on cue. Conversely, no one could ever test men wanting to have sex with their mothers, or women being driven by penis envy, or any of the other bizarre assertions made by Freud. Behaviorism is employed by advertisers and governments, but people continue to study psychoanalytic gibberish in psychology school.
Sociology is even more absurd than psychology. It’s just a bunch of blatant spooks, which have been pulled out of the ether. It is effectively just Marxism. I don’t think you can find any sociologist who is not actively or de facto promoting Marxism.
These “social sciences” were of course the basis of the Frankfurt School, a group of Jews who set themselves up at Columbia University after a very mean man with a mustache kicked them out of Germany. They founded modern academia, which is the basis for basically everything you hate. Free love, homosexuality, atheism, anti-authoritarianism, anti-natalism, anti-masculinity, and every other vile thing came from these Jews, under the shroud of fake science – a quest to define humans without a God above or a Hell below.
All of this gibberish is designed to wrap some sort of meaning around meaninglessness. If there is no God, if we are an accident, then the only logical conclusion that anyone could come to is that there is no purpose to existence beyond Will to Power. It’s just common sense. If nothing means anything, then the only thing that means anything is your experience, and the only rational thing to do in a material universe where the only thing that matters is your experience is to seek to exercise your will. You can’t let the goyim know that.
In order to prevent people from taking secularism and turning everyone in society into a bank robber, cult leader, or serial killer, intellectual life had to be flooded with neo-religious spooks. All of these spooks are now encapsulated under the umbrella of “democracy.” They are what is summoned up when politicians and personalities speak of “who we are.” There is no there there.
This is Dead World. We were sold Dead World, and we bought it.
As Houellebecq so morbidly demonstrates in the hideous pornographic novel Atomized, following these ideas to their conclusion leads to satanism. In a godless society without a shortage of food or warmth, the obvious thing everyone will seek is sex. Eventually, some people who have had enough sex will realize that the sex without reproduction and family is really about Will to Power, and then you have the satanic ritual serial killer as the ultimate expression of will. The easiest example of this is Vladimir Lenin, who engaged in satanic torture serial killing on a massive scale, of course under the guise of “humanism.”
I wouldn’t put any of this on Andrew Bird, of course. He is an intellectual, and I’m sure he’s familiar with all of this. The song is named after a book by a writer who has been accused of virtually everything I’ve been accused of. But I am simply explaining what the song means to me. I was hit right in the feels by the reply to “we are human” being “what is your point?”
All of these modern doctrines say “we’re human so that’s what we are and so our values are that we’re humans, because humanity is what we are.” A human without a relationship to God is an insect, scurrying around for food and sex, or a monster, forcing its will on others for power’s sake. A human without a relationship with God is ironically never a real human being.
I don’t believe “all religions are the same” or any such thing. I am a Christian, and I believe Christ is King of Heaven and everything under it. But it is notable that every culture on earth, throughout all of history, believed in religion. Most of them still do. It is only the white man (and by proxy the Japanese), who have really dived into this void. The idea of humans not having souls, of not being parts of an interconnected whole, was entirely novel when these Jews started marketing it.
We’re told to blame this on modernization and technology. I am a big respecter of Ted Kaczynski, as well as Jaques Ellul, who served as his inspiration. But I am not willing to commit to the concept that technological development is incompatible with a relationship with God. The direction of the application of our technology over the last 80 years has been driven by this humanist ideology. Fascist countries were obsessed with modernization, and whatever you think of them, they were not preaching “human life is fundamentally meaningless – and that is where we find our meaning.” The attempts to tie Nietzsche to Hitler are mostly like the attempts to tie Hitler to ancient aliens. Obviously, Nietzsche was a great writer and thinker, and much better than the humanists and Marxists in that he just said the logical conclusion of “God is Dead.” He was intellectually honest, instead of a Jewish liar. I’m sure Hitler read him. But fascism as an embodiment of Nietzscheanism is just factually wrong. It was a Christian movement with direct ties to the Church.
Carl Jung was made the de facto head of academic psychology in Germany under Hitler, basically because he was the only actual German that could be found in any of the psychology departments. For the record, he resigned before the war officially started, and later said he never agreed with Hitler. But he was there during Hitler’s rise and made conflicting statements about how he viewed the situation. At one point, he said Hitler was “creating a German Islam.” By that, he meant that Hitler was attempting to tie every aspect of culture and identity together into a unified whole. He was Catholic but had greater support among protestants, so it’s unclear how all of that would have played out if there had not been a massive war six years into his rule, but it is clear he wanted a German church to be at the center of his New Man (which was a concept tied to technological development). Again, whatever you think of Nazism – it was not preaching nihilism, and it was preaching rapid technological development.
Meanwhile, America during the same time period was developing technologically very fast, and there was none of this Marxist-Atheist-Weirdo stuff. All of this was forced on us. Technology was the medium, to be sure. You couldn’t make people who live on a farm without electricity believe in trannies or coronavirus or sacrificing our entire quality of life for neo-Nazi torturers in the Ukraine. But the two are not intrinsically tied together. I would argue that mass urbanization is not even a direct result of technology. If there was a guiding frame of thought that was aware of the dangers of mass urbanism, technology would not have evolved in that direction. Mass condensed urbanism is a manifestation of hedonism.
So while “stop blaming technology” can be taken as simply a reference to celebrities blaming Twitter for their sins against society at large (our values/who we are), from that line I also draw images of the false connection between godlessness and technological development. These people literally claim that “we used science to figure out there was no God lol.” Modern biologists are de facto social scientists at this point, and this promulgation of spooks has spread to physics, with gibberish about black holes and dark matter, all again designed to back up the concept of Dead World, a world where humans do not have souls, but instead have a vague “humanness” that is associated with amorphous “values.”
The name of the song, aside from being the name of that vile French porno book, is also very important to me. “Atomized.” For this is the truth: the further we are separated from God, the further we are separated from each other. Look around. This is self-explanatory, is it not? We are closer together than we ever have been, yet we have never been so far apart from one another.
It’s easy to blame technology for that. But we should stop. The only possible meaning in this life is connections to other people. We are all that is real. Everything else is a spook.
This is what poetry and music are supposed to do – draw up all of this imagery and emotion.
I haven’t listened to Bird in a while, but he is a true genius, or a prodigy, and it is amazing that he never sold out. He’s been active since the 1990s and has never gone the way of producing music for a mass audience. I am really disgusted by what happened to all of the great indie rock bands of the 90s and early 00s. But I guess it is a will to power. Why not become a superstar, if you have the option? If God doesn’t exist, then what does your music really mean anyway? It is simply a tool to be used to shape the world around you, and if ditching art in favor of mass spectacle gains you more power, why not do it?
That really applies to everything.
Bird is well respected, of course. But most people who are not into music don’t know who he is. He could definitely be making radio hits if he wanted to. He could serve as a producer for pop musicians. His range proves that he understands music better than basically any active living musician that I’m aware of. But he’s remained doing his thing.
I stopped listening to this type of music (indie/folk/country/wtvr – cool kid stuff) several years ago, and started listening mostly to techno/synth, boomer rock and prog rock (and some classic rock), gangster rap (classic drill/trap), classic Asian pop music, jazz, and baroque (and some other classical).
As Saint Paul himself said, “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control.” I don’t feel that much modern music encourages these things, and I think that if you listen to too much of it, it can drag you into darkness. Can you imagine listening to The National? This is a band that was celebrated in these circles when I dipped out. I still check in on Kurt Vile and a few others. But usually I just listen to the album once and leave it at that.
One thing that always drew me to indie rock as a young man was that it wasn’t a bunch of love songs. If you weren’t a person who wanted to go into different genres of music than those promoted, you would think every song was a love song. This is part of the hedonism. This infinite drive for sexual stimulation, and the emotions associated with it, is a kind of infantilization of society. Those emotions in love songs are meant for teenagers, to drive them to reproduce. These are not adult feelings. If a man in his 20s or 30s (or beyond, at this point) tells you he is in love, he has lost the plot.
But we are flooded with love songs. As I wrote in an essay recently, which I meant to elaborate on, I was feeling nostalgic and went back and listened to Blink 182 albums that were released in my pubescent years, and found that they were all actually just love songs. I suppose that was appropriate, as it was music for teenagers, in a time before Tinder when average male teenagers were still having sex.
Andrew Bird is a good example of not writing love songs. The two albums that made the biggest impression on me were “Mysterious Production of Eggs” (2005) and “Armchair Apocrypha” (2007)
Eggs has a song, “Nervous Tick Motion of the Head to the Left,” which deals with the same theme as Atomized.
This is the first verse:
We had survived to
Turn on the History Channel
And ask our esteemed panel
Why are we alive?
And here’s how they replied
You’re what happens when two substances collide
And by all accounts you really should have died
“Tables and Chairs is a lot of fun, I think. And maybe relevant. It appears to have been written about someone who was really concerned about global warming (it was two years after the release of that Al Gore fear film), and he says it doesn’t matter anyway because society is going to collapse.
I know we’re going to meet some day
In the crumbled financial institutions of this land
There will be tables and chairs
There’ll be pony rides and dancing bears
There’ll even be a band
Cause listen, after the fall there will be no more countries;
No currencies at all
We’re gonna live on our wits
We’re gonna throw away survival kits
Trade butterfly-knives for Adderall
And that’s not all!
It’s been an underlying theme in the music – this establishment claim of the meaninglessness of human existence.
Both albums were musically just an embodiment of light, intelligent indie rock, though they were very different from one another. This came after he’d done swing and jazz music and less straightforward indie rock. Armchair is arguably his most mainstream album. But the lyrics are so great.
Most of it is poetry examining the human condition in modernity, using various allusions to literature and history. But I always think of the song Scythian Empire, which is just about the Scythian Empire – no allusions or metaphors.
I was 23 in 2007, and it got me into reading about the ancient peoples of what ultimately became Southern Russia and their relationship to the Silk Road.
Most famously, Bird is known for his violin, switching between strumming and a bow (I’m not a musician and have never understood how he could strum it so long and then use the bow without retuning it), and his loops, which are truly amazing – he plays multiple instruments and different riffs and loops them with pedals, playing all the instruments in a song himself. He actually did a TED Talk in 2010 doing looping. It was called “Andrew Bird’s one-man orchestra of the imagination.”
Even if you’re not interested, this is worth 20 minutes of your life.
The one “love song” he made is actually a doom song duet with Fiona Apple, mocking the concept of love songs as vapid and degrading. I don’t know if he was actually having an affair with Apple at the time. It sort of seems like it in the video, which I think is really great.
The song “Three White Horses” and the entire “Hands of Glory” album was also very meaningful to me. This was released in 2012, which is after I had largely stopped listening to indie rock as any kind of regular habit, but it hit me.
The song makes me believe Bird is some type of Christian, even if he doesn’t know it yet.
This is more of a rant than a legitimate essay. Usually, when I write something this long, I try to make it a legitimate essay, just with a little bit of flavor. I used to write this sort of thing here much more often; I guess I started to look down on it in some way. I am probably overly self-critical. I don’t really feel any need to impress anyone. But it got to a point where I was like “I should not write 3,500-word shitposts, these things of this length should at least vaguely resemble traditionally structured essays.” Like, I think that part about the progression of “positivism” to the current state is important, and I’ve never written an essay about that, even though I spent how much time reading this weird boring Jewish tripe. So it’s easy to think “maybe this should be isolated from inane commentary about indie rock?”
However, I think there is a theme here, which I can put a bow on. The part about the Jewish push for dehumanization through humanism, and the transformation of human beings into insects and monsters, serving hedonistic impulses and instincts or asserting power without reason beyond nihilistic and solipsistic aggrandizement, relates back to Andrew Bird caring more about his craft, producing a joyful noise, than being a superstar inflicting his will on the world. He is not an insect nor a monster, but a real human being.
This concept needs to apply to your life. The world is collapsing around you, but you are where you are, and nothing about the process of your decisions should change. You should always do the right thing, regardless of the consequences. As soon as you begin to think about the consequences of doing the right thing, you’ve already lost the game.
We are human beings. That is what we are born as. A child has a longing to seek to know God. This world is designed to beat that out of us. Our battle is to hold onto it.
We are not separate atoms. We are distinct elements of a whole. We must seek to return to this whole, eternally.
The ride never ends.
Andrew Bird released a lyrics version of Atomized.
The transcription I posted missed a backing vocal chant with the line “are we are all islands or more like Finland?”
This could be an allusion to Houellebecq’s “The Possibility of an Island,” as that dealt with similar themes. “Island or Finland” though asks if we are totally isolated, or a unique person – Finland has a totally different language than Scandinavia or Russia – caught in between cultures and conflicts that don’t directly relate to our identity.
There is probably more to be drawn from a distinction between an island and Finland.
Anyway, I actually think this lyrics edit is very artistically sound, and the lyrics are so important to the music that it is good to have them visible and correct, which the YouTube CC was not.
I might start writing more Andrew Bird rants.