UK Punks Pro-Immigrant Anthem is Beautiful
There are punks on the other side of the pond, with a pro-immigrant, progressive message, and they happen to be fantastic to watch live. The Bristol band Idles exude a ton of charisma when they perform, watch as the lead singer is overwhelmed on stage, while the guitarist walks on top of the Glastonbury crowd, half naked. This particular song is about friends and loved ones who are immigrants. It’s a rager against the nationalist tide in Britain, against the Brexitires, and those who blame aliens for their troubles. It’s called Danny Nedelko, after an immigrant friend of the band.
“My blood brother is an immigrant
A beautiful immigrant
My blood brother’s Freddie Mercury
A Nigerian mother of three” – Danny Nedelko
The Idles call themselves a ‘postpunk’ band, and as an old punk myself, I love their whole new album ‘ Joy as an Act of Resistance’. The best way to absorb the album, is to watch them play their songs live. That’s how punk music is meant to be consumed, in a sweaty crowd, full of indiscretion and anti-authoritarian energy.
Idles, have a sound and message that remind me of the Dead Kennedys mixed with the Clash, and it’s nice to see artists on different continents, standing up to the current wave of nationalist bigotry going around the globe. This band shares a message of unity and tolerance, just like the progressives and real punks in America.
Songs Played at the NPR Tiny Desk, June 2019: “Never Fight A Man With A Perm”, “Mercedes Marxist” and “I’m Scum”.
Here’s the official music video for the song Danny Nedelko, with Ukranian immigrant Danny himself. He goes around the city taking pictures with various immigrants, using the ‘OK’ hand gesture, in the pursuit of reclaiming it from white nationalists. It’s really nice.
You can watch their whole Glaustenbery set here (it’s great). Their music videos are also artfully performed, they have songs about grief, love, scum, toxic masculinity, addiction, politics, and more. They’ll be in San Francisco Oct 11th at the Fillmore.