Your Flag (Is Wack)

Heath Cottengim has created this epic vexillological rap video.  Enjoy.   Download: soundcloud.com/heathcottengim/your-flag-is-wack Lyrics: genius.com/Heath-cottengim-your-flag-is-wack-lyrics [Hook: Heath Cottengim] Your flag is wack, your flag is wack, your flag is wack Belgium just Germany taking a nap I’d take it all back If you’d just change the flag I be on the attack ‘Cause your flag is wack […]

World Order: Imperialism

Japanese band World Order is, in their words, “a group creating a unique genre of performing arts through its original musical and physical expression”. (The group’s leader, Genki Sudo, has characterized World Order as “a new-world-order-conspiracy-theory parody group”.) Of their 2013 single Imperialism — from their album Have a Nice Day — they say: The new single […]

Xavier Rudd & The United Nations: Flag

Xavier Rudd is an Australian singer-songwriter who recently brought together musicians from Australia, Germany, Ireland, Papua New Guinea, Samoa, and South Africa to form the band United Nations.  Their reggae song Flag leads off their latest album Nanna. The video is built around images of white flags — the white flag of peace, not surrender. […]

Helly Luv: Revolution

Kurdish performer Helly Luv (Helan Abdulla) shot the music video for her single Revolution in a village near Erbil, Iraq, during fighting between ISIS and the Kurdish peshmerga.  (During the shoot she fired upon ISIS militants herself.)  The video is an oxymoron:  a pacifist plea to “Stop the Violence” that glorifies the anti-ISIS Kurdish armed forces.  It […]

The Most Vexillologically-Sophisticated DJ?

Thanks to Neil Mussett who enthusiastically pointed us to this flag-loving electronic music DJ:  Bassnectar (aka Lorin Ashton).  His logo is the “Bassdrop”: From The Bassdrop Explained: “My dear friend who created the word “bassnectar” helped me create the logo. We searched through books of images and icons, and found something similar to the first original […]

The MTV Flag on the Moon

Six years before Andy Warhol made Moonwalk, the creators of MTV went to the same Apollo material to announce their presence to the world on 1 August 1981: Here’s what they said about their decision to “rip apart” a “holy” image in order to make their point: MTV’s parody of the Apollo 11 flag salute […]

Rihanna: American Oxygen

In Rihanna’s latest music video, the Barbadian immigrant uses imagery of the American flag to unpack its meaning in terms of American dreams and nightmares, ultimately declaring “this is the new America / we are the new America”.  Jake Flanagin in Quartz calls it “a surprisingly powerful statement on immigration” (surprising given Rihanna’s reputation for non-political dance music); […]

Billy Talent: Red Flag

Happy May Day! Billy Talent – Red Flag (2006).  Director: Floria Sigismondi. [Chorus:] Cast off the crutch that kills the pain The red flag waving never meant the same The kids of tomorrow don’t need today When they live in the sins of yesterday [Repeat chorus] Well I’ve never seen us act like this Our […]

Flags by Oh Land

Here is the video for Nanna Øland Fabricius’s song “Flags” from her latest album, “Earth Sick”.  As one might expect, the video features a number of flags — her own creations: Oh Land: Flags (2014). Lyrics: It’s incredibly handsome, The teeth so white You smile to the cameras And speak for your rights While I empty […]

Musical White Flags

The white flag of surrender is a recurring motif in popular music. Here is a brief survey, courtesy of YouTube: Our first and most popular musical white flag was a 2003 pop hit by Dido with a video featuring Whedonverse actor David Boreanaz.  “White flag” appears in the chorus:  I will go down with this ship / And […]