❉ A musical call to action with strong messages promoting human rights and raging against social injustice.
Influenced by the likes of Korn, Rage Against the Machine and Muse, Cardiff-based punk band Digital Resistance were formed in 2019 by three left-wing academics who are angry with the ongoing status quo, and lyrically this comes across loudly in their material, pushing against socio-economic norms to the max. Consisting of firm friends Ana Kee, Psy and Wolf, their shared bond is based on anti-establishment values which are expressed through their songs. They write collectively with strong messages promoting human rights and raging against social injustice, whilst challenging political lies and inequality in all its numerous forms. Their philosophy of using music almost exclusively as a platform for the messages of resistance, can be encapsulated in their lyric “I’d rather die on my feet, than keep living on my knees” in their track Fire.
Released earlier this year, their debut album Alternative Facts uses a mix of poetry and spoken word against a backdrop of heavy guitar riffs emphasising their viewpoints that aim to stand as “history lessons to the white-washed curricula”. The album opens with the track Ashes, with strong guitar riffs and complex, angry spoken poetry tripping over the heavy drums and guitars and paints a heady picture of discontent and disillusionment.
Pale Blue Dot is a less chaotic affair where the words are delivered with a more measured dose, but continuing with the strong messages, however the music here is the main focus of the track. Nest of Evil is a speedball delivery of drums and guitars whereas Delusional Safety is more reminiscent of their Rage Against the Machine influences. Pillars of Oppression has melodic guitar riffs that get under your skin with an American grunge vibe, while Deferred Hope and Economic Conscription both continue to deliver the anti-establishment vibes which form the flesh and bones of the album.
Fire is one of my favourite tracks on the album and delivers the anger felt by many, and challenges bandwagon-jumping of internet campaigns, confronting individuals to think for themselves, daring them to ‘pick a side’, and make that decision, conscientiously and stand by a decision that they stand for. As the saying goes, ‘if you fail to stand for something, you stand for nothing’. Out of Sight again delivers a furious, intelligent spoken word argument against the failed economy we’re expected to sit back and ensure. But not here!
Rain is a gentler track musically, with the emphasis on the spoken word poetry over a melancholic musical back drop. It speaks of a reflection of the sea of tears shared globally by the disillusioned and under-privileged, wondering when the rain will come to those who have not seen it for months, and using the metaphor to great effect. The final track on the album Oligarchical Collectivism uses reflects communist values.
Digital Resistance embody the disillusionment, anger and hopelessness than many of us are feeling in this current global environment, where those put in power are largely in it for themselves, and the word ‘democracy’ has taken on a somewhat diminished meaning in today’s society, across the world. People are having to shout louder to make themselves heard and are challenging previous ‘norms’ with greater aplomb than in years’ past. Political protests in the form of challenging racism, sexism and homophobia are now commonplace. Rage against the machine – you betcha!
❉ ‘Alternative Facts’ by Digital Resistance is released on Grimace Records and is currently available on Apple, Amazon and Spotify. You can follow the band via Facebook, You Tube, Twitter @DigitalResist20 and Instagram: @digitalresistanceband.
❉ Ange Chan is a freelance writer, having produced two novels and six volumes of poetry. She was also prolific contributor in the anthology collection Me and the Starman (now available by Cult Ink on Amazon) and is a lifelong lover of music, having first been published in the 1980s music press. As well as being a frequent contributor to the pop culture website We Are Cult, she is also working on a long-standing project, her third novel Champagne Flutes and Pixie Boots, which she wonders will ever get finished.