May 29, 2018
Let’s All Unite In Ear-Bleeding With Terrible Ear-Bleedy Feminist Anthem, ‘Go Forth Feminist Warriors’!
Do you love to make people smell bad things? Or taste rotten milk? Then email this post at once to all of your friends, or Facebook it, or tweeter it, so they can hear this horrible all-star feminist virtual jam session that resulted in “Go Forth, Feminist Warriors.” Basically, a bunch of feministy type musicians set out to make a feminist “We Are The World,” which there is really no good reason to do.
We get that the estimable Tavi Gevinson, teenage proprietress of Rookie Mag, was being both silly and earnest at the same time when she commissioned this atrocious shitlump. We commend her intention. But hoo fuckin’ boy, this shit is rank.
There are people on this song, like Carrie Brownstein, Tegan and Sara, Kate Nash, and Aimee Mann who REALLY SHOULD KNOW BETTER than to do this. How does it sound, you ask? It sounds exactly like a song that has the lyrics “they mansplainin’ every night and day but they can’t mansplain our freedom away” would sound. It’s “We Are The World” meets the Postal Service meets some earnestly awful and awfully earnest lyrics.
Look, if we had to listen to it, so do you.
Even worse? The song wasn’t recorded in some sort of superstar good time feminist jamboree. It was essentially recorded via email.
For a song that also could sound totally and not-at-all serious (no offense, ghost of Michael Jackson!), and that would be an actually good anthem with the power to uplift! and unite!, I turned to one of my favorite musical artists, Katy Davidson, the songwriter behind Key Losers, keyboard/piano player for Gossip, and half of Lloyd & Michael, a songwriting duo that also includes Marianna Ritchey. I thought for sure Katy and Marianna would “get it” and be up to the totally weird challenge of writing Rookie’s own “We Are the World.” They proved me right, and how!
Once the song was written, we sent it out to more than a dozen musicians and singers (including Psalm One, Carrie Brownstein, Tegan and Sara, Kate Nash, Tavi, Suzy X., and a whole lot more people who are listed in the credits below). They emailed their parts back, and thanks to them, as well as careful assemblage by the engineer/producer Chad Clark, we proudly present: “Go Forth, Feminist Warriors.”
This song does not uplift! nor does it unite! In fact, we feel downright depressed! and irritated! and probably divisive! because we will have to have fights about whether it is cool to criticize this.
Look, these “throw everyone in a room and it will be amazing” songs don’t work. To have a solid superstar jamboree, you need people to be feeding off one another, not just standing around singing one line each. That’s why this is a raucous good time:
…and this is “We Are The World.”
And here, you didn’t even get all the earnest feminist peoples in the same room, so it just sounds like 10 people are singing the same song, but slightly out of sync and in completely different keys and then every once in a while it switches to an entirely different song, like when Psalm One drops in to rap in the middle of everything. It’s the “Accidental Racist” of feminist songs and we’ll probably be torturing our friends with it all weekend, so at least there’s a small upside to this.
Make sure to get to the end, where they sing about pizza.