> THE MANIFESTOS / THE SHAPE OF PUNK TO COME
(LINER NOTES FROM "THE SHAPE OF PUNK TO COME")

The worms of the senses ponder quickly towards destruction. Winning is not everything but in our elitist competitive society it is all that matters. Rice cakes for the people and caviar for the leaders who built our world around machines, money and matter. We were left out of the plan and our destination is set by the used car dealer or the factory boss. Bored we walk home with our heads hanging and our creativity stolen as an effect of capitalist gain. In a dream state there is nothing more than simple abstraction of the mind from the matter and the belief that work will somehow “macht frei”. The theory that Marx recognised from Feuerbach, and no we, the people, need to see the spectacle that binds us to our “destiny”. Alienation is not commodity, figures, statistics or make believe but very much a real tool of oppression and seclusion. If we can’t take our part then we must not take part. The faculties of the skull are another dimension of that which is sucking us dry. The imperialisation of the third world is dominant even in our taste for soft drinks and afternoon snacks. With dry wits and knuckles dragging the ground co-operations claim that profit is rightfully theirs and that the blood squeezed out of Africa, South America, Burma, The Baltic states and South Asia is nothing but market interest and public craving. Their products are death and they are salesmen of corruption  and power abuse. They are the slave dealers of our time. They are the inquisition. They are the machine that must be stopped.

Turn the knob and wait for the liberating sound of ecstasy and revolution. Who pays the newsman and who owns the radio stations and who runs the record label? Who benefits from the de-politicizing in art and music and who benefits from the clean sound of the next pop wonder? Who runs the game show and who pays the salaries to the reporters? Here and now we offer you a taste of our liberation frequency, provided by us for your satisfaction and excitement. This is radio clash, 33 Revolutions Per Minute, our haven of thoughts and ideas. It could be yours too, if only you’d let yourself go and turn the knob and listen and love and sing and think.

Stuck by the deadly rhythm of the production line. Stuck by the conditions set by the capitalist market. Stuck by the necessities of living and forced to take part. If we are tired it is because we are supposed to be and if we are hungry it is because we have to be and if we are bored it is because it is expected of us. Bored and chained and stuck and dead. New forms of work camps are arranged and new ways of hiding the monotonous beat of slavery are being presented. The preliminary condition required for propelling the workers to the status of “free” producers and consumers of commodity was the violent expropriation of their own time. The spectacular return of time was made possible only after this dispossession of power. Urbanism is capitalism’s seizure of the natural and human environment; developing logically into absolute domination, capitalism can and must now remake the totality of space into it’s own setting. Time, work, environment and joy all have their norms set by modern ways of production.

The awkward youngster touches his poster and glances upon the stars and the heavens. The day seems neverending and there is a certain notion of innocence and childhood play. The mantra will be repeated and we will learn to obey and love and cherish the chosen few. Manners inconceivable and then we have to live. Ideals corrupted and echoes from the past about ideas once held true are shining like untouchable constellations. But we are all stars, shining and burning, cruising down the highway looking for the next stop and the next break from capitalised boredom and slavery. Then there is the option of summer holidays vs. punk routine. Then there is greed and money and fallen heroes. “We are all tired of dying”. So why not try and live for a change and turn that glimmering into bright shining creation through the realisation that you know everything and that you are you?

Must I paint you a picture about the way that I feel? This situation of Art vs. Life and the present elitism within the bourgeoisie and upper-class. The critics hold their heads high cause they know about the real suffering and the real work while we get the easy accessible forms of communication and entertainment, pinned down simple for us to comprehend. The lack of stimulants within art, politics and life lowers our standards which is why we settle for talkshows and MTV. We are not stupid, but if we are treated like ingrates we will start to act like children. The lack of challenging forms of expression and thoughts of fire and self-confidence gives us a passive and hollow nature. So reclaim art, take back the fine culture for the people, the working people, the living people and burn down their art galleries and destroy their fancy constructions and buildings. Cause we, unlike the bourgeoisie, have nothing to lose and therefore our expression will be the only honest one, our words will be the only challenging ones and our art will be the one revolutionary expression. We need new noise and new voices and new canvases to become something more than the last poets of a useless generation.

The credentials with which we call upon you are simple linguistics thrown and tossed liked flaming songs of discontent. The Refused party programme screams out not 1, not 2, not 3, not 4, not 5 but 6 opinions and 6 structures of change and 6 levels of liberation. All in all not mystical but direct and attractive and as we shout “Yeah” you’ll feel the same sensation best described by Tomas Paine: “Let them call me rebel and welcome, I feel no concern from it; but I should suffer the misery of devils, were I to make a whore of my soul...”. Here and now and all the time the mythical touch and the obvious message. Behold the wisdom of the party program.
Pro (in favour) – attest (testify for).

The time is now and still we sit and wait for it to become the now that we think we need. The movement of protest has strong traditions and we are far from the first to recognise and use the power of the song and the words from the young poets. We are trembling from the taste of days gone to waste and there is inspiration and there is clarity. Phil Ochs stated firmly “If I have something to say I’m going to say it now” and still protest song 68 is nothing more than a pastiche, a blueprint of seduction of the echoes that once filled the corridors of dorms and boys/girls rooms in an era where rebellion and revolt was present in art and music. From the first until the last, from the taste of longing freedom to the shackles of oppression, the weapon of the artist has always been used.

Refused are fuckin dead that’s what the answering machine said, looks like this is it!!! They talked one to many shit about the upper-class and the government, did you hear what those faggots said in some fanzine someone else read. I heard they are a bunch of spoiled little rich kids who need to get their asses kicked. Fuckin ingrates! Fuckin pussies!! Refused are fuckin dead guaw huydsas kjhds aowedde (fighting sequence). Refused are fuckin dead by order of the postmaster general just like the panthers only this time for real because SAPO have tapped their telephones and the Umeå police raided their homes and they must have been killed.

Are you ready baby? For the shape of punk to come. Get the equipment together and we’ll meet at the show. It’s gruesome that someone so handsome should care. We all recognise the hint of the programme screaming at the top of his lungs that “We’re all dressed up and we got somewhere to go”. Like the rebellious swing kids of the 40’s or the crazy jazz heads of the 50’s to the stylish mods of the 60’s we all need to recognise that style in contradiction to fashion is necessary to challenge the conservatism of the youth cultures placed upon us. Strict in our style but with a touch of elegance and freedom and individualism. The uniform and the production of constructive challenges comes in the most unexpected of shapes, Ornette Coleman reinvented jazz altogether and we need a new beat to move to so grab your partner and ask: Do you want to go out with me, watch me get on my knees and bleed? This blind date might take you to places unknown and it will be new and scary and vital. But nonetheless there is no danger in exploration and searching. It never tasted this great to scream “yes” and you never had more enticing cavalier to hold hands with. The new teen hysteria of noise and kisses and politics and crazy entertainment and naked fun and beats and books and poetry and travelling and style. It’s never been safe to live in a world that teaches us to respect property and disregard human life. So drop your belongings and get on this soul train, dig the static sound and think that maybe this once there is just us, the kids, playing the day away, it’s just us kicking over statues and smashing windows of houses of parliaments, just to show them who has the real power. This blind date will take us anywhere we want.

A dream only lasts so long. Imagine the pyramids inhabited by aliens and the dark corridors and the dreams and the longing for better financial conditions. The sweat pours down your neck and you run and you run, heart beating, head pounding, alive tonight. The streets never sleep, they are glowing, vibrating with the echoes of laughter and joy, screams and curses. We just need to take the time and see what it can offer us and how we can break free from this boredom that the capitalist reign has forced upon us. Tonight we can be as mighty as tannhäuser and we can tumble excited down the labyrinths and the turns knowing that derive` is potent. So where do we go from here?

The Apollo programme was a hoax or so we say. The biggest lie was market economy that blinded us with the glory of prosperity and freedom. The deck was dealt and we all lost, on our knees in the dirt hoping for salvation and then we look and there are golden drops of dawn functioning as oral sagas, keeping us shackled, making glory of the lies that the spectacle provides us with. So as we sit tight and enjoy the soap operas that are designed to keep us bleeding out of our eyes and keeps us nodding and sighing, there is still hope in the petrol bomb and in it, the revolution. For in the destruction and the overthrowing there is a certainty of salvation. We need to destroy the museum and it’s old artefacts, we need to tear down the power structures that enslaves and then in revolution we can live and be alive. Yes, this is our hymn and our praise to the brave and bold stranger in the night, to the fed up worker and the angry wife. Hope, revolution and dedication. Fight fire with fire and everything will burn. Yeah.

This manifesto is very much for real.
 

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