Tracks

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One of the catchiest songs to come along this summer is from Arcade Fire’s Will Butler. Surrender is the lead single from his upcoming album, Generations, and you’ll be easily tempted to sing along.  It’s deceptively disguised as a love song, but its meaning goes much deeper. The companion video starts with light hearted, pre-pandemic studio footage and evolves into Will’s views on the Covid-19 situation, Black Lives Matters protest and police and prison reform.

Will comments on the song:  “Surrender is masquerading as a love song, but it’s more about friendship. About the confusion that comes as people change–didn’t you use to have a different ideal? Didn’t we have the same ideal at some point? Which of us changed? How did the world change? Relationships that we sometimes wish we could let go of, but that are stuck within us forever.

 It’s also about trying to break from the first-person view of the world. ‘What can I do? What difference can I make?’ It’s not about some singular effort–you have to give yourself over to another power. Give over to people who have gone before who’ve already built something–you don’t have to build something new! The world doesn’t always need a new idea, it doesn’t always need a new personality. What can you do with whatever power and money you’ve got? Surrender it over to something that’s already made. And then the song ends with an apology–I’m sorry I’ve been talking all night. Cause talking like that, man, not always useful.”

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John is the mid-morning host on WFPK.