Friday, December 10, 2010

"Mama's gonna make all of your nightmares come true"

You can find a lot of clips of Roger Waters' tour of The Wall at YouTube, but most of them are of pretty poor quality. Here's one of the best I've found -- "Mother," from the Sept. 20 show in Chicago (just five days after it got underway here in Toronto, when I saw it opening night).

In addition to how it fits into Pink's personal (and universal) story (the overbearing mother who provides so many of the bricks in Pink's wall), there's another level to what the song is about, a political one, an Orwellian one: "mother" as the state, the state having us under constant surveillance.

Given what's happening to WikiLeaks and Julian Assange (perhaps the essential political theorist/activist of our time), with the "state," including supposedly liberal democratic states like the United States, trying to suppress the truth and maintain its self-legitimizing authoritarian conspiracy, aided by an appallingly pathetic media establishment, a media co-conspiracy that advances the state's lies, it's deeply relevant to our current condition -- indeed, to the human condition generally.

And it's also, within the more personal context of The Wall, a simply incredible song, one of Pink Floyd's best.

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