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The 10 Most Leftist Albums Ever Made

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Posted on October 27 2010 9:00 pm

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What albums might Leon Trotsky have done some head-banging to if Josef Stalin hadn’t sent an assassin to shove an icepick through his skull?

Answer: the 10 Neo-Communist (and some flat-out communist) titles on our list. We count them down from the more benign Democrat-supporters to outright totalitarian radicals.

Included in this collection are alternative, rock, rap, folk, and hip-hop titles. We’ve also done our best not to be too obvious with our choices — you won’t find Greenday’s “American Idiot” on this list, for example. We also made the choice to select albums that despite being nauseating in their politics can actually be enjoyable to listen to — hence the decision to include a video with each. That’s your cookie for having to endure the next ten pages of anti-Americanism as we expose some of music’s most politicized albums.

BTW, click the images of the albums to go check them out at Amazon. We highly recommend listening to Marxist music whilst writing blog posts ripping the Left apart.

10.“Hail to the Thief” by Radiohead

Considered by music critics and fans alike as the 20th century’s most important rock band, Radiohead took over the alternative music world in the mid ’90s with “OK Computer,” a brilliant album about the alienation we feel because of technology and the ways it makes us a little less human each day. (Certainly an accurate prediction of our Facebook-Twitterverse world of today.) They then turned themselves inside out in 2000 with the release of “Kid A” an almost completely electronic album that is considered by many to be the most important record of the past ten years. Lead singer Thom Yorke, never one to shy away from slamming George Bush and the administration’s stance on environmental issues, decided to use the band’s 2003 album title as a soundboard on the 2000 US presidential elections. Apparently “Impeach George Bush” was already taken as an album title.

Spin magazine writer Chuck Klosterman had this conversation with Yorke in 2003 following the release of “Thief”:

We’re talking about politics (kind of) and his two-year-old son Noah (sort of), and I ask him how those two subjects dovetail–in other words, how becoming a father has changed his political beliefs and how that has affected the songwriting on Hail to the Thief, the sixth studio album from earth’s most relevant rock band.

His answer starts predictably. But it ends quickly.

“Having a son has made me very concerned about the future and about how things in the world are being steered, supposedly in my name,” he says between sips of mineral water. “I wonder if our children will even have a future. But the trouble with your question–and we both know this–is that if I discuss the details of what I’m referring to in Spin magazine, I will get death threats. And I’m frankly not willing to get death threats, because I value my life and my family’s safety. And that sort of sucks, I realize, but I know what is going on out there.”

Yorke’s reluctance is not a surprise. Since April, Radiohead have stressed that Hail to the Thief is not a political record and that the album’s title is not a reference to George W. Bush’s controversial victory over Al Gore in the 2000 presidential election (in fact, Yorke claims he heard the phrase during a radio program analyzing the election of 1888). This is a bit paradoxical, because that argument seems both valid and impossible: There are no overtly political lyrics on the record, but it feels political. And Yorke is not exactly nonpartisan: At a recent antiwar rally in Gloucestershire, England, he publicly declared that “the U.S. is being run by religious maniac bigots that stole the election.”

“If the motivation for naming our album had been based solely on the U.S. election, I’d find that to be pretty shallow,” he says. “To me, it’s about forces that aren’t necessarily human, forces that are creating this climate of fear. While making this record, I became obsessed with how certain people are able to inflict incredible pain on others while believing they’re doing the right thing. They’re taking people’s souls from them before they’re even dead. My girlfriend–she’s a Dante expert–told me that was Dante’s theory about authority. I was just overcome with all this fear and darkness. And that fear is the ‘thief.'”

Because “Hail to the Thief” is not explicitly politically but more of a tonal assault on freedom we rank it at #10 on the list.

Key Tracks: The Gloaming, Drunk and Punchup at a Wedding, 2+2=5

Next: one of the grandfathers of alternative rock got some Bush Derangement Syndrome…

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6 Responses leave one →
  1. October 27, 2010

    I’ve never heard most of these albums. But I got to say, Toxicity is an amazing album! I choose my music like I choose my friends, we don’t have to agree but don’t be a prick. That’s why I have Toxicity (their other albums aren’t nearly as good) and not the Battle of Los Angeles. If you’re into anything heavier, o encourage you to get Toxicity, their timing changes and unique sound make up for their stupid ideas about how the world works.

  2. October 28, 2010

    I think "Imagine" by John Lennon should be on this list.

    • Error: Unable to create directory uploads/2015/04. Is its parent directory writable by the server?
      October 28, 2010

      The thing is that "Imagine" is just one song. The rest of the "Imagine" album is pretty apolitical with the exception of "Gimme Some Truth." http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Imagine_(album) We're talking full albums here.

  3. October 28, 2010

    I can propose two, but they're not composed of popular songs. Both are from Mo Asch's Folkways label: Songs of the Spanish Civil War, and Bertolt Brecht Before the House Un-American Activities Committee. Sorry, I couldn't help it. As an aside, I happen to have both albums.

    I too remember Blows Against the Empire. Personally, I liked that album. It WAS naive and stupid, though, I have to admit. On the Jefferson Airplane/Starship front, Thirty Seconds Over Winterland was pretty left-wing too, and also naive and stupid. "Children of the forest, child of the Woodstock Nation/You gotta care for the needs of your planet…"

  4. Error: Unable to create directory uploads/2015/04. Is its parent directory writable by the server?
    October 28, 2010

    No Pete Seeger? How about Springsteen's Tom Joad or Devils and Dust? I have a lot of the Boss's albums, but when he goes all agenda, it ruins it all for me.

  5. October 28, 2010

    Thanks for the list. Here's a GREAT one from the early 80's: the album "Millions of Dead Cops" by M.D.C–a gay, marxist punk band from the Bay area (via Texas I think). I cannot reconcile any of their views with my own, but I can't not like this no matter how hard I try. Some samples:
    "Business on Parade" sample lyric: "Business is on parade, corporate scam sharade, crumbs for the poor, rich man's profit's soar, government by the rich, poor man life in the ditch."
    "Corporate Deathburger": "Corporate deathburger, Ronald McDonald, Corporate deathburger, Ronald McDonald. Change from your five, torture camp for cows, slaughter and starvation from death corporation. You say you're a Christian but your a fake, multinationals on the take, starving children deserve a break today."

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