These Systems Are Failing.
All of them.
We built great cities. Great industries. Great systems. These systems were supposed to protect us, to free us, but instead they’ve poisoned our air, killed the animals, butchered the land – and destroyed ourselves. We think we’ve conquered the problems of food production and wealth distribution, yet we’re more miserable than ever.
These Systems Are Failing is the name of my new album. It is my first as Moby & The Pacific Void Choir.
I approached this record like a four year old would approach making breakfast out of everything they like: ice-cream, the dog, their toy cars and toast. I put in everything I like: punk and post-punk and new wave and euphoric rave and yelling.
I played this album to some friends in the music business and they said “Um, OK, it sounds pretty angry.” So I went away and made it even angrier.
I can’t offer solutions, only raise issues.
When some of my middle-aged compatriots try to accommodate the pop market place, the results are so anodyne and depressing. Seeing musicians pretend to be young and relevant makes my organs clench with utter sadness. I’m 50 years old: why deny it?
The fruits of artistic compromise are rotten.
These Systems Are Failing was created in Los Angeles. I moved here six years ago and it is the strangest of cities. There is so much emptiness. Darkness too. To the east is the desert, to the west a vast ocean, and in the middle a confluence of cultures. This city’s art is odd and its paradoxical aspects are utterly compelling. You can’t help but be changed by it.
The Void Pacific Choir takes it named from a DH Lawrence quote: “People in L.A are content to do nothing and stare at the void pacific.” Often a void is perceived as a big, dark, scary, weird thing – the dark, malicious, Nietzschean void, where if you stare too long into it, it stares back into you. Therefore, I liked the linguistic paradox of a pacific, peaceful void – a benign emptiness.
Pop music remains an interesting and compelling medium. It’s possibly not the best way in which to examine incredibly detailed policy minutiae, but to make music you love while addressing issues that concern you and are not a gratuitous waste of time to the listener is always something to aspire to.
Complex music and complex ideas don’t necessarily have to sound complex. Nor do heavy topics have to be an oppressive experience for the listener. They can still sound joyous. Bad Brains sang about the Nazi threat on ‘Big Takeover’, yet it was pure euphoric energy.
I’m happy to be vague and uncompromising and esoteric. I see the phrase These Systems Are Failing as a starting point for people to look around and ask “Which systems does he mean?” and then perhaps examine the world around them more closely.
Democracy still works, and technological systems too, so there is hope here too. There has to be.
What’s clear though is that our best choices are killing us. We’re separated from what we once were. We’re destroying the world, and we’re still miserable. Fat, sick, stupid, and anxious are no ways to live.
These Systems Are Failing.
Let them fail.
Change or die.
Moby & The Void Pacific Choir.
Los Angeles, California. 2016.
**LP comes with lenticular sleeve**
1. Hey! Hey!
3. I Wait For You
4. Don’t Leave ME
5. Erupt & Metter
6. Are You Lost IN The World Like Me?
7. A Simple Love
8. The Light Is Clear In My Eyes
9. And It Hurts
Little Idiot IDIOT49LP