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Design By Humans
Published On: Mon, Sep 1st, 2014

Gil Scott-Heron: Nothing New

GSHGil Scott-Heron
Nothing New
(XL Recordings)

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Gil Scott-Heron’s legacy, his bravado and unflinching lyrical dissection of social and political dynamics make it feel certain that few if any will ever experience the level of fame and adoration he gained for his unique ability to lay bare injustices in a stream of consciousness delivery. His early ’70s classic, “The Revolution Will Not Be Televised,” forewarned blind comfort in consumerism, media and mainstream popular culture. It thrived to repeat that the revolution on the horizon would not be passive or championed by the mainstream. Every time an event polarizes the masses, “The Revolution Will Not Be Televised” seems to illustrate the point that the mainstream continues to be hypnotized by its own gaze while beneath the surface a movement exists and its force will not be ignored. Nothing New is essentially a collective of previously released songs stripped bare to expose the endearing raw strength of Gil Scott-Heron’s lyrical power and vocals against a piano. Although “The Revolution Will Not Be Televised” is absent from Nothing New, the songs assembled are clear gems. “Alien (Hold On To Your Dreams” tackles immigration as he assures brightly, “No matter the consequences or the fear that grips your senses, You have got to hold on to your dreams.” In his unrelenting fashion, he uses the song to support the plight for dreamers alike. The effervescent simplicity of “Your Daddy Loves You” is pointed as it paints a scene of someone watching over a peacefully sleeping child whose parents are at odds with each other. Without frills or much else, the poetic beauty of Nothing New is yet another look at a timeless artist.

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Gil Scott-Heron: Nothing New