This Sunday, millions of Christians will observe Easter, a religious holiday celebrating the resurrection of Christ and traditionally marking the end of a 40-day period of fasting and penance. But let’s be honest: for most contemporary Westerners, the things we actually associate with the Easter holiday–eggs, bunnies, etc.–have a lot less to do with Christian theology and a lot more to do with pagan notions of fecundity, procreation, and birth. In other words, most of us aren’t celebrating Easter so much as Ishtar, the Mesopotamian goddess associated with love, sex, and fertility. So today, for all the non-churchgoers out there, we’re sharing a playlist of songs exploring the true meaning of Ishtar—or, as noted scholar of ancient spirituality DJ Assault put it, ass and titties. It’s not exactly religious music–at least in the Judeo-Christian sense–but we happen to think these things (and them thangs) are pretty sacred.
This Tuesday was of course Valentine’s Day–or, as we like to call it at Dystopian Dance Party, Discount Candy Day’s Eve. Yes, there comes a time in everyone’s life when the week of February 14th starts to be less about candlelit dinners and roses, and more about maximizing the bags of heart-shaped chocolate you can purchase with the $9.87 left in your bank account; and, as you might expect, both of us turned the corner on that particular issue a long time ago. So in this post-Valentine’s week, whether you’re recovering from a night of full-on romance/plowing or nursing a recently-broken heart, why not take a moment to appreciate the one thing we all share: a tragic lack of self-control when it comes to sugary treats. Here are 17 songs about candy to satisfy your sweet tooth; try not to give yourself a stomach ache.
On November 8, 2016, the unthinkable happened: Donald J. Trump, a wig-wearing, sentient jack’o’lantern whose only qualifications for the office were a reality television career and a simmering contempt for brown people, was elected the 45th President of the United States of America. Ever since then, the unthinkable has continued to happen with numbing regularity. The executive chair of a racist chain email disguised as a news source was appointed to the position of White House Senior Counselor and Chief Strategist. A literal neo-Nazi rally was held with impunity in Washington, D.C., ending with shouts of “hail Trump!” The Senate held confirmation hearings for a potential Attorney General who previously lost a district court nomination due to allegations of racism; along with a potential Secretary of Labor who wants to eliminate the federal minimum wage, and a potential Secretary of Housing and Urban Development who has actually gone on record saying that he is not qualified to run a federal agency. Oh, and did we mention that the Republican-led Congress is halfway through repealing the Affordable Care Act, without even the slightest glimmer of a plan to replace it with?
So, yes, this country is going to shit, and we hope every day that a meteor will fall to Earth and put us all out of our misery. But we also don’t want to succumb entirely to cynicism and apathy. We’re mindful of something El-P from radical hip-hop duo Run the Jewels told NPR’s Morning Edition last week: that “it’s a mistake to let our history off the hook so much so to say that Trump is introducing the idea of dread into American culture.” We’re aware that Trump, while easily one of the worst things to happen to American politics in recent memory, is far from the worst thing to happen to American politics ever. And we know that we–most of us, anyway–will outlive his presidency: not in the wan, “conservatives survived eight years of Obama, so we can survive four years of Trump” sense, but in the sense Angela Davis is talking about when she says that freedom is a constant struggle.
Yesterday, hundreds of demonstrators disrupted Trump’s inauguration; today, the Women’s March on Washington is rallying as many as a quarter million women and allies to advocate for the rights that are under threat from the most openly misogynistic administration in recent memory. These protests obviously won’t stop the Trump Train from careening directly into Fuck This Shit station; that ship sailed a long time ago, and if removing Trump from office is the goal, we’ll be better off crossing our fingers and hoping that one of his many pending legal proceedings will reveal something impeachment-worthy. But this weekend is an invaluable opportunity to organize, make our dissent known, and settle in for a long four years (Christ, I hope it’s only four years) of resistance. Whether you’re taking to the streets or not, we hope this playlist of anti-authoritarian anthems will help put you in the right frame of mind. Now let’s fuck some shit up.
Tomorrow is Christmas–which, here at Dystopian Dance Party, means that we’ve been listening to the Ying Yang Twins’ holiday EP for at least 30 days straight. But since we can’t just throw up a link to The Ying & The Yang of the Holidays every year and call it good, here are 19 more songs about ass-shaking and/or festive winter holidays. Play them at your holiday celebration and watch your extended family members clear the fuck out: because, like Plies says, you deserve somethin’ niiiiiiice for Chrima. Happy motherfucking holidays!
Today, the long national nightmare that is the 2016 general election finally comes to an end. And the worst thing is, we can’t just stay in bed and wait for it to be over; no, this election, more than any other in our lifetime, we actually have to care. So here we are: one more day of reading inane social media opinions while resisting the urge to reach through the computer screen and throttle the person on the other end. One more day of listening to the commercial news media alternately clutch their pearls and wallow in the reality-TV nightmare they created. One more day of gazing upon Donald Trump’s pumpkin-like visage and realizing that, holy shit, this repulsive troll of a man might actually be our next president. Whatever happens after the polls close this evening, we can at least take solace in this: it will all be over tomorrow. And hopefully, when we wake up on the morning of November 9, the events of the past year-plus will all feel like one long, bad dream. In the meantime, here are 16 democracy-minded songs to help get you through the final stretch. Hang in there, America. And for fuck’s sake, please vote.