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Made Clear: Xinlisupreme’s “I Am Not Shinzo Abe”

Today Japan’s Lower House passed a controversial security bill that, if it goes through and results in Japan’s Constitution being changed, would allow the country’s Self-Defense Force to participate in overseas operations where Japan or one of Japan’s allies are in danger. It’s a huge departure from the nation’s previous pacifist position and, even though today’s vote doesn’t technically guarantee anything, the way it is set up more or less means this amendment will happen by the end of September. A lot of Japanese people, though, don’t like this development! People have been protesting, and a lot of people…including Hayao Miyazaki!…think this is a pretty gross development in the country’s history. Despite any hope for stopping this appears bleak, people are still not going down without shouting at Abe and his administration as they bulldoze this stuff through.

Long-running psych-surf trippers Xinlisupreme released a song today called “I Am Not Shinzo Abe,” and the title almost serves as a summary of the just-under two-minutes-thirty-seconds song. Over a distorted surf-rock guitar line and beat, the duo shout “I am not Shinzo Abe!” over and over again. And they drop a slick guitar solo into the blur just for good measure, though they don’t dwell on it because they need to holler about not being Shinzo Abe more.

Politically charged music can be tricky business — besides the risk of aging badly, the stuff can just sound deeply awkward. Picture the lamest coffee-house crooner discovering the intricacies of the NSA and creating clunky metaphors about it. Xinlisupreme, though, dodge that via simplicity — they opt for a what amounts to a simple-but-direct statement — one that a lot of people agree with — and they shout it out so much you won’t forget. It’s a rallying cry made as simple as possible, but that bare-bones structure results in something that says more than a lot of doofy poets ever could. I am not Shinzo Abe — and I am not what he stands for. Listen above.