Everybody and their cousins across the pond have an opinion about the recent Brexit vote. Whatever your feelings, British rock - a staple mesh of genres across the decades - has apparently been anticipating this event for a while now. And in classic rock fashion, it has responded.
1. Moving to LA - Art Brut
Art Brut delivers a catchy breakup song perfect for Brexit - the penultimate decoupling. If the English weather and disdain for regulations gets you down, just get deported - to LA! Fantasies will come true, clothing will come off - it’s all possible in the City of Angels. You’ll be able to let loose and leave the U.K. to it’s own problems - drinking with Morrissey on a California beach. Sounds better than renegotiating trade deals.
2. Australia - The Kinks
Why stay in a dilapidated ex-empire when you can sun it up in the colonies? This one keeps the island motif of the U.K. but with kangaroos. Australia sounds pretty nice - sun, surfing, opportunity. It also doesn’t like immigrants - just like the U.K.! Davies and crew paint a sonic picture of the continent that is also a country - almost convincing you to immigrate (but then you remember the child sized spiders).
3. Subterranean Homesick Alien - Radiohead
Stiff upper lip and all - but backing out of the common European market was an uptight move. Radiohead knows this type - they basically inhabit this planet. Thom Yorke laments the sad state of the Earth in 1996 which perfectly mirrors the miserable Brexit mood. He wishes aliens would just take him away. Don’t we all - don’t most British now? Well, not most, just 47.5%.
4. Move On - David Bowie
Always the icon, David Bowie was consistently ahead of his time. He also “moved on” from the jolly U.K. early. A New Yorker from 1992 to his death, Bowie left his home island - probably precogniscent of Brexit, right? He sang about this feeling on a track he recorded in Switzerland about wanderlust. He’s just a “traveling man” - which would be harder having to present a passport at the border. Bowie sings about his favorite haunts abroad and someone calling him to leave in the song - maybe it’s Boris Johnson.
-- British Jeff