Review Summary: So here’s to you Mrs. Robinson, you live in an unforgiving place.
Louis Armstrong once said to himself, “What a wonderful world!” and yet, I’m still usually unable to share his enthusiasm. It takes just one look at the headlines of nearly any newspaper to see why: poverty, disease, and a surprising amount of ignorant, pointless, hatred seems to be the only things to be found. And these things have all been around since the dawn of time and will probably remain for just as long.
Andrew Jackson Jihad, it seems, have a relatively similar perspective on modern life. They paint a rather unsympathetic picture of the world: it’s filled with cowardly-yet-merciless killers, hopeless days spent sitting and sighing, and all sorts of unpleasantries like HIV and death and nobody is able to anything about it. Indeed, it’s established by the end of the first verse that God, or whoever is in charge of everything, doesn’t give half a damn about anything that you have to say.
That said, should any of this prevent us from having some fun? Andrew Jackson Jihad are firmly convinced that it should not. Sure, the world will eventually “devastate” and even “kill” you, but you might as well enjoy yourself for now because, goddammit, you’re trying your best. And besides, while people might be rude and impatient, one just can’t help feeling that they’re still pretty great in the end. Who knows, claim Andrew Jackson Jihad, if you spend your life being kind to others, the world just might become a better place.
This message, which is as uplifting as it is depressing, is told through optimistic, punky folk songs much akin to a sloppier Frank Turner or Andrew Bird (neither of those would ever be caught saying that there’s a “rapist and a nazi” in everyone’s “tiny heart”, though). Most songs don’t feature much more than (frequently off-key) singing and a guitar or two, but once can occasionally hear an mandolin or horn make a brief appearance. Regardless, there isn’t a very large amount of variety here, but the fun, upbeat nature of most of the melodies makes this much less of an issue than it could have been. Along with this, the quirky nature of tunes like “A Song Dedicated to the Memory of Stormy the Rabbit”, where pizzicato melodies and horns of all kinds accompany alliterated addresses about being a ball of meat that the bees can eat, makes the lack of diversity a much less glaring issue.
People Who Can Eat People Are The Luckiest People In The World
is certainly an odd record, and it most definitely feels a bit disquieting when songs about the scarily-optimistic thoughts of a man committing a quadruple murder are followed by tunes about how there should be no more crying, hatred, or sadness. But in the end, the whole point is clear: you’ve just got to be the “best fu
cking human that you can be”.