There is a good reason that a particularly odious meme was called a "steaming pile of Sarah Mclachlan" by SnarkAndCircumstance on their blog. No, that was not one of my edits, it was what they actually said. But it was enough of a nudge to get me to finally take the time to do this post.
I have been disgusted by those ASPCA commercials for a long time, and there were elements within some Sarah Mclachlan songs that I've always disliked, even if the music and her singing voice is awesome.
let's face it, some of her songs, particularly when used in or meant for, and even contain politics, are glurge.
that angel song, and Answer, when used in ASPCA promos, and "World On Fire" are annoying glurge set to music, even if a Christian Facebook page found merit in World On Fire.
"Ordinary Miracle" is not far behind, especially since it was used in that hamgodawful Charlotte's Web remake, where animal rights propaganda was also used on kids. And there is a glurge meme called Day Of Ordinary Miracles what a coincidence. Songs just lose all their appeal when used in bad political agendas or make political statements on their own, and Mclachlan is definitely not the only star who has done this. Anyone remember Jewel's "Ugly Girl"? *Cough, cough!*
Mclachlan's "Full Of Grace" is a nice enough song, but she sounds like she's having a huge poutsulkmope about something on the last words "It's better this way."
"Building A Mystery" is seriously catchy as far as the music goes, but there is an f-bomb in the lyrics. Even without that f-bomb, these lyrics are impossible for me to relate to. But when I sing it, I replace the f-bomb with something else, and am not crushing on the weird bratcreep the girl is attracted to in the song. It's like she's singing from the POV of one of those infernally annoying girl brats who is attracted to bad boys. *Rolling eyes* My take is decidedly derisive, I mock him instead whenever I sing along to that song.
"Ice Cream" - well, let's put it this way, the real thing is much better than the corny song.
Contrary to what some people believe, the song "Dear God" is not a McLachlan original. It is from XTC, and Sarah McLachlan did a cover of it. No matter who originated it, the song sucks out blaring loud to the ends of the galaxy.
How do those blasted ASPCA commercials effect some people?
dubsism's post made me lol!
dubsism: The Fargo Force Are My New Favorite Minor-League Hockey Team 25
fargo force logo
In order to truly understand this, you must have suffered through those hamgod-awful Sarah McLachlan ASPCA commercials set to the putrid strains of that audial vomit she calls music. Seriously, these ads are so hamgoddamn annoying they make me want to kick the nearest puppy just to spite these people. Don’t get me wrong, nobody should abuse animals, but nothing will turn me off to your cause faster than being all whiny and overly moralistic about it. You could turn me to a me pro-baby cancer stance if you made the commercials against as preachy and condescending as those ASPCA spots.
Enter the Fargo Force of the United States Hockey League, who have made a masterpiece of parody with their latest season-ticket campaign. The premise of “minor league hockey players are terribly mistreated, abused and ignored” totally lets the air out of the pompous windbaggery of the “we are better people because we care more than you.
For that sirs, I tip my cap…
Roflol! *Applauds* Oh, that was great! The surest way to take a good song and ruin it is to use it in some horrid campaign.
I do admire Mclachlan's singing voice a great deal, and like some of her music. But that's music without all the "Stop and listen to this deep message I want to ram down your throat." "Possession" and "aDia" coming right from her own experiences with people, and they're not sanctimoniously telling the rest of us to care about this, be sad about that, we're not doing enough about this, that and the other, and they are not featured in those hair-tearing, tooth-gnashing, guilt-tripping "Give to this charity" commercials that make one want to shoot oneself!
It's all done, and some people are just fine with this, in the name/cause of "raising awareness" well scrap that! We don't need any more blasts for "raising awareness" the problem is everyone is already too much aware to the point where at least some of us are sick of it, all awarenessed out and we just want to be left alone to help out wherever and whenever we can, in causes we choose to support on our own.
I hate those commercials!
The ones for helping children, exploit the poor by using their sad images to make us all cry and give more and more and more money, without seeming to be doing much good, or so we keep being told.
There used to be some commercial on that pretty much called you a child-hater for not giving to whichever charity was putting it on. "They're the children everyone loves to hate." I kid you not, that was the opener! Excuse me - that is so judgemental and offensive I don't even know where to begin! Trying to help out the poor and stop children from suffering and being homeless is certainly a good cause, one of the best. Anyone with a conscience wants suffering to stop. But these commercials stink to the top of the galaxy and beyond!
Those promoting animal rights/welfare organizations, don't even get me started. Old, outdated images of sad scared animals that we are being told over and over again, are being abused, need homes, need to be prevented from getting the needle, and how they are all such innocent little fur babies, oh, give me a bucket! I wouldn't have a problem with these organizations and the animal welfare movement if that was exclusively all they were about - trying to get animals in real, immediate danger, out of it. But they go way beyond that into the political and trying to police everyone and anyone else concerning animal ownership.
Morgan wrote a blog entry called Sarah McLachlan Can Suck It on SATURDAY, JULY 2, 2011 at 6:19 PM.
It reads in part:
"I just want to make this real quick and say, "Eff you, Sarah McLachlan and your ASPCA commercials with your stuuuuuupid 'Arms of the Angel' song in the background." If I give you your stupid $18 a month will you put happy puppy commercials on my tv? Okthanx."
Morgan goes on to describe Mclachlan's commercial as:
"the horrible, awful, sad, depressing video with dogs who shake, and animals with one eye all stuck behind bars from Alcatraz"
And on this link, with an url I don't like, it's clear that even animal "rescuers" don't like being on the receiving end of their own stink, but what I found especially telling was how traumatized Mclachlan's morbid ASPCA ads are on children. A lot of comments aren't worth reading, but a few that were, mentioned how little children, and we're talking around five years of age, panicked because they thought the ASPCA animals were about to be killed right there on TV, or weren't as sad at the funeral of a human being until the angel song was played, and then they cried over the sad kitties in the commercial. *Facepalm*
So let's chime in with our not-so-angelic yet far from heartless voices, shall we?
I would mangle this song glurge if it had not been originally written for some other reason than the ASPCA. But alas, I cannot.
Here's what Wikipedia says about the song.
"Angel"—inspired by the fatal overdose of Smashing Pumpkins touring keyboardist Jonathan Melvoin—made sales skyrocket. In Spring 1998, the motion picture City of Angels featured "Angel". It became the No. 1 album on the Billboard chart. More than five months after the movie disappeared from the theatres, City of Angels: Music from the Motion Picture remained firmly entrenched among Billboard's top 40 albums. This soundtrack earned quadruple-platinum status."
That puts it into better perspective, even though I could never understand that bit about "sweet madness" and "glorious sadness" since neither are sweet or glorious, just disturbing and painful.
All I can say is, angel should've stayed about mourning death by drugs and had never been used in that stupid ASPCA ad.
The only thing I can say is that it's a shame this song was also used in an ASPCA ad. Otherwise, there's nothing the matter with it and it could fit nicely into a comfort scene in some movie.
"World On Fire"
Here's what Wikipedia says about this one.
"World On Fire". Rather than shoot a conventional music video for "World On Fire", McLachlan donated all but $15 of the $150,000 budget to various charitable causes around the world and then used the video to explain how it benefited the communities that received the money."
So I applaud her for that - provided the charities were truly helpful ones for saving children, fighting disease and poverty etc, and not political movements dressed up as charities.
But the problem remains that unlike McLachlan, most of us don't have that kind of money at our disposal and can't come anywhere near doing all that for charity, and even with a bit of money, we still need to be sure the charities we want to give to are legitimate.
It could be argued that it wasn't just McLachlan who helped out people with this money, it was everyone who bought her albums/songs. Sure. But that still leaves those who haven't, and even those who have, did they know they were all part of this big give beforehand?
After all is said and done, though, the song itself still comes off hitting us all over the head with gloom and glurge, even if she claims otherwise.
Let's start with the chorus first and then go through the verses.
The world's on fire and
It's more than I can handle
I'll tap into the water
(Try and bring my share)
I try to bring more
More than I can handle
(Bring it to the table)
Bring what I am able
Ocean Elf: Guess what? You're not the only one who cares so much but can do so little. But being a celeb, you can sure do a heck of a lot more than the average person with very limited means.
V1: Hearts are worn in these dark ages
Ocean Elf: there's something dark about every age. Our era isn't perfect, but it's still better than much of what made up life in past centuries. Think about it.
V1: You're not alone in this story's pages
Ocean Elf: I have to admit I rather like this line, but the song doesn't keep this seemingly comforting tone.
V1: The light has fallen amongst the living and the dying
And I'll try to hold it in, yeah I'll try to hold it in
Ocean Elf: Huh? You can't hold in a fallen light that doesn't come from you. What's more, I don't think that's your job anyway. Aren't we supposed to shine light into the darkness?
V2: I watch the heavens but I find no calling
Ocean Elf: That's because astrology isn't going to determine your calling. For that, you have to look inside yourself and at what goes on within you between you and God.
V2: Something I can do to change what's coming
Ocean Elf: Nobody knows what's coming or when, not in the grand scheme of things. You know the whole nuclear apocalypse scare tales of the 80s about the supposed upcoming end in the 90s didn't happen. The world didn't end in 2000, 2003, or 2012. It won't end at the next nut's sky-is-falling proclamation either.
V2: Stay close to me while the sky is falling
Ocean Elf: Oh, brother! You sure buy into this gloom&doom stuff, hook, line, and sinker! Be scared and wallow in this fantasy all you want, but I'm going to live the best way I can and move on.
V2: Don't wanna be left alone, don't wanna be alone
Ocean Elf: Neither did the boy who cried "Wolf!"
Bridge: Hearts break, hearts mend
Love still hurts
Ocean Elf: Not only that, love still brings great joy, too.
Bridge: Visions clash, planes crash
Ocean Elf: And sometimes accidents just happen.
Bridge: Still there's talk of
Ocean Elf: And your point is?
Bridge: still the cold
Is closing in on us
Ocean Elf: Yet the world's on fire. Sure, makes sense…
V3: We part the veil on our killer sun
Ocean Elf: *Scowl* This is exactly what's wrong with this song, you have it right here, a gloom&doom message with a very thinly-veiled perpetuation of the political "Humans are killing the planet!" thing.
V3: Stray from the straight line on this short run
Ocean Elf: *Rolling eyes* Oh, for the love! Cheer up already, you have your whole life ahead of you still, and nobody knows if it's short or long.. This is not a "short run" and not everyone's idea of a "straight line" lines up with yours. Mine certainly doesn't - I don't buy into this "We are causing the sky to fall" claptrap.
V3: The more we take, the less we become
Ocean Elf: That's just really condescending judgementalism now. I suppose you actually meant that as a zinger against anyone besides you who has made a bundle, presumably off the backs of everyone else. But if we turn this around and hypothetically give all of our stuff to the poor, they take it, does that make them become less? I don't think so.
There are all kinds of taking in the world, and for some of it, yes, I suppose people can become less for it. For example, you take everything bad political agendas hand you for gospel, and yes, you become less.
V3: The fortune of one that means less for some
Ocean Elf: Oh, cry me a river over it. The rich and the poor have been here since the very beginning, and in that sense alone, our age is no darker than any other in history.
But just because one person strikes it rich doesn't mean someone automatically somewhere else becomes dirt-poor. Especially if someone has managed to get their fortune honestly, including inheriting it.
Some of us are absolutely sick and tired of being told by things like this song, that nothing we ever do is good enough, that by not living in abject misery ourselves, we are causing other people to do just that.
So stick this pontificating pile of self-pitying pessimistic whinge in your ear. Over and out.