Sole & DJ Pain 1’s Video Shows the Hostage Crisis of Elections

Still from Sole & DJ Pain 1's new single, Hostage Crisis. (Image: Sole & DJ Pain 1)Still from Sole & DJ Pain 1’s new single, “Hostage Crisis.” (Image: Sole & DJ Pain 1)

Radical hip-hop group Sole & DJ Pain 1 just released their new music video “Hostage Crisis,” which features Chris Hannah of the punk rock group Propagandhi and author/musician scott crow from their recent album Nihilismo.

Sole told Truthout, the song “was written in the wake of the ISIS (also known as Daesh) attacks in Paris on a nightclub in which over a hundred people died.” While politicians and pundits tripped over themselves to declare how they will “wipe out” ISIS, Sole said “No one wants to talk about the experience of alienation that has become endemic, the sense of hopelessness that many youth feel, or how the psychology that gives rise to the spectacular killings of ISIS is a close cousin to the mass murders commonly committed by white men in the US.”

Showing one layer of the hostage-crisis civilization is in, Sole explained.

“Here in the US, we are held hostage between horrific worldviews, the neoliberal imperial designs of Hillary Clinton, the fascist isolationist dreams of reality star millionaire Donald Trump,” said Sole. “On the other side, we have ISIS [which] has grown out of our failed invasion of Iraq [and] promises a slightly more apocalyptic vision for the planet.” Sole’s main point is that people can’t vote their way out of the mess we are in and that behind the hostage crisis “are the people, born into a system designed so they have no meaningful input or control and are forced to watch these events unfold with horror.”

When asked about the role of voting in today’s politics, Sole told Truthout, “Voting is held up as the highest civic duty while those working towards collective liberation are targeted, attacked, jailed and smeared. We are told that the stakes couldn’t be higher, global warming will drown our children, ISIS will behead them, cops will kill them, Hillary/Trump will use them as cannon fodder for empire, and late stage capitalism will continue to suck them dry until all this is left as dust. None of the so-called leaders fighting for control of the world have the answers; in fact, those running for office are the problem. They all offer variations of the business as usual: More war, more misery and few real solutions that address the root of the ‘crisis’ — the IS state, capitalism and democracy itself.”

Chris Hannah’s chorus on the song clearly paints the dismal picture of the damaging effect of industrialization and human-driven climate change: “We’ve been enlisted to wipe each other out/They won’t be happy until the sky is black/Every forest cleared, every ocean a tomb/This is how it’s always been.”

At the end of the track, scott crow injects some optimism stating, “We are facing historic crisis from exploitative and destructive economic systems, corrupt governments and civilization as we know it. Which are all causing disasters with many faces — economic ecological and war. We will never vote or buy our way out through political systems or corporations. Our time is now to find other paths, to rely on each other instead of them. Our futures are open to resist, rebel and create our dreams on the ashes of theirs.”

Sole and DJ Pain 1 were recently on CSPAN, performing before the book release of Jeremy Scahill’s The Assassination Complex for the staff of The Intercept. They will be touring throughout Europe in September and October, as well as releasing new political interviews on the Solecast.