I almost made it into the nineties for a moment then, and if I had I would have chosen Ian Brown’s track F.E.A.R which was recorded a handful of years before Rise, the single released by post-punk group Public Image Ltd in 1986.
The song was written by John Lydon of Sex Pistol’s fame and, whilst I missed out on punk through being a little too old to really join in, I was captured by this wonderful song about apartheid in
South Africa and Nelson
Mandela. It wasn’t that theme that grabbed my attention though, nor the
reference to Northern Irish RUC interrogation techniques, it was the sheer
anger the song contains. Whichever way you look at it, this IS a rebel song.
I’ve always felt like a little bit of a rebel, even if these days I do it from an armchair through shouting at the television, but I’ve had my moments and in general it was those moments that moved me on. Now, I could be right, I could be wrong, but to my mind rebellion goes hand in hand with different thinking and eccentricity which according to my daughter is strangeness. Maybe she’s right; I don’t find it easy to conform, I am uncomfortable with authority, and mindlessly following groupthink in order to have a quiet life makes me angry. It always has despite how it sometimes might have appeared.
In the words of My Lydon, anger is indeed an energy and if used effectively can help to change the world to make it a better place. Without anger there is acceptance and that is what, in the main, governments and the status quo wants. I know this may sound like leftist talk but it has always been the angry young men that have made a difference. Now I’m not young any longer I suppose I should just accept and shut up, but I can’t and indeed I won’t and more to the point why should I?
May the road rise with you.