The Jury is Still Out on New Video for RITFW
Opinions are all over the map on the new video for "Rockin' In The Free World" with somewhat predictable responses from various Internet discussions.
Over on Democratic Underground, calimary posted:
"Neil Young's credentials are impeccable, as is his integrity. And if somebody wants to resurrect some of his stuff and apply it to a different/later era, then all the better for the rest of us. The best, most powerful and most relevant songs or artworks or commentaries are those that can apply to conditions that repeat themselves due unfortunately to relentless human stoooopidity across the years. A worthwhile message is a worthwhile message."
Over on Metafilter, there was this response by Sir BoBoMonkey Pooflinger Esquire III:
"But as for the video itself, what does it really show?
That both Neil Young and M. Moore are capitalist pigs exploiting their own art for financial gain? Probably not. Warner Reprise execs, probably more likely thinking along these routes.
Egomaniacs in self-masturbatory excess? Debatably possible.
Clinging desperately to their hopefilled ideals that they can make a difference in this nation seemingly on a downward slope of moral ignorance disguised/manipulated/confused as Patriotic fervor and self-defined good Christian Morality? Probably most likely, in my pathetic, tree-hugging opinion."
Over on Chromewaves, Frank posted:
"Interspersing footage from Fahrenheit 9/11 and live performances from Neil's recent Greendale tour, it's a pretty severe edit of the song and it plays more like a commercial for the film than a video for the song. Consider that Neil's Weld tour, which spawned a live album, came during the height of the first Gulf War and made this song a protest anthem of sorts, and now almost fifteen years later, a second Gulf War led by Bush Jr provides fresh, yet familiar, visuals for a second video. Well, that's just messed."
Also on Democratic Underground, Pigwidgeon posted:
"The Southern rockers got over "Southern Man" after a few years, but a lot of lefties can't forgive him for his infatuation with Reagan Conservatism in the early 1980s -- but, if I recall, it lasted all of about a year.
Neil drank the Kool-Aid, and then puked it up. Sadder, wiser, etc. He makes mistakes and learns from them, which is more than most people can say."
And so what does Neil himself have to say about music and politics? From over on BNB a story on World Entertainment News Network (via COMTEX):
YOUNG: "Half the people feel musicians should be listened to simply as artists and shouldn't step outside their area as political spokesmen.
"But the other half feel what musicians have to say is meaningful. Maybe it's not going to change your mind. But it's going to reinforce what you feel if someone whose music you relate to agrees with you.
"It can be a very effective thing if people go and vote for whatever they feel the music says."
On Kool 104, Young said about the video: "I just saw it for the first time half an hour ago. [Moore's] done a great job.'"
Surprisingly, the Rust list has been pretty quiet about the video. What's up with those oh-so chatty Rusties?!
So what did you think of the new video for "Rockin' In The Free World"? Vote and comment below.
More on this poll and previous polls. Also, see analysis of the song "Rockin' In The Free World" and the original music video.