PLAYLIST: FEELS Make the Most of a Post-Earth Scenario

To complement their apocalyptic sophomore record, the garage rockers compiled a playful soundtrack to the end times.

FEELS burst onto the scene in 2016 with their Caste Face–released, self-titled debut, a blistering collection of guitar-driven West Coast garage rock produced by, of course, Ty Segall. Fronted by Shannon Lay and The Like’s Laena Geronimo, the LA band are returning next week with a follow-up that’s apocalyptic in more ways than one: complementing the rapturous guitars tearing through the album are lyrical themes implicating the U.S. in the world’s imminent end. From the opener’s quip of “one nation under fraud” to the bipolar rips of closer “Flowers,” Post Earth is indisputably an aptly titled record.

While the end of the world isn’t typical subject matter for an album that could be considered “fun,” it’s hard to deny the playful energy that carries Post Earth. In asking the band to compile a playlist of apocalyptic tunes to accompany the record, they instead built a soundtrack to a Moonraker–esque narrative embracing both the Bond movie’s horrific eugenicism and its irresistible campiness.

“The idea of a ‘post earth’ isn’t something that most people want to think about,” the band explains. “It’s a deeply terrifying concept, really! But it’s on the table, and ignoring it won’t help. So let’s go ahead and entertain a worst-case scenario, where those who do embrace the [reality] invest in a post-earth leave to pursue their future on Mars.”

You can dive into the playlist below, and make sure to grab a copy of Post Earth when it drops February 22 via Wichita Records.

1. Pixies, “Where Is My Mind?”

The secret is out, and soon the roaring of engines and fire piercing the air is deafening, as those of us still on the ground watch the rocket containing the billionaire 1 percent ascend through the stratosphere, fleeing a dying Earth and a now-defunct society to colonize Mars. There is a poetic quiet left behind. This song is such a great representation of the potential for tenderness in the midst of total chaos.

2. The Slits, “Newtown” (John Peel Session)  

Well, here we are—covered in mud, boiling hot, wading through the wreckage, missing modern conveniences and realizing how addicted we are to them, still. It’s a new town, but at least we have each other! And the music of The Slits, who inspire us to not be shy.

3. Television, “Marquee Moon”

Mysterious times, my friends. Turning over rocks, asking questions, and gathering information via guitar antennae and cryptic poetry. We encounter some sunny birds and ask them for guidance. Setting aside our story here, we just love this entire album. If you put it on in our van, you are practically guaranteed to get us all singing along, especially with the guitar solos.

4. Fugazi, “Burning Too”

Resentment toward those grossly responsible for intentionally trashing our planet grows, as does our understanding that we are somewhat responsible, too, for allowing ourselves to be soothed into complacency.

We are consumed by society
We are obsessed with variety
We are all filled with anxiety that this world would not survive
We gotta put it out, the sky is burning
We gotta put it out, the water’s burning
We gotta put it out, the earth is burning
Outrage, but then they say
Anytime but now
Anywhere but here
Anyone but me
I’ve got to think about my own life
The world is not our facility
We have a responsibility
To use our abilities to keep this place alive
Right here, right now
Do it. Now. Do it.   

But seriously…like, how about now? This song was released in 1989—maybe it’s still not too late?

5. Suburban Lawns, “Janitor”

Everyone busts out the mops and rolls up their sleeves to try and clean up the mess. “All action is reaction / Expansion / Contraction / Man the manipulator.” We can do it! But wait—are there nuclear bombs hidden around? Is there radiation leaking out and making everyone sterile now? Will there be a future generation? Trying to keep spirits high but, uh, it’s hard under these circumstances. This song (and this band) rips.

6. Wire, “I Am the Fly”

Fear begins to creep its way into the ointment, spreading its disease. Fear is the arch-nemesis of all good things. This song on its own is a bit scary, but in the best way. It’s a minimalist strength—taking something small and making it triumphant, so I guess stripping the fear from the fearful? Anyway, this is another one where we all start yelling along in the van, “I am the fly!”

7. Nirvana, “Territorial Pissings”

Morale plummets and people start to totally lose it, tired of trying so hard to stay positive while feeling totally overwhelmed by disaster. Any inspiring words seem like mockery. Full-on rampage ensues, “Gotta find a way!” There is a song called “Find a Way” on Post Earth. We all grew up listening to Nirvana, and this song is so satisfying. It makes going completely insane sound fun.

8. Blonde Redhead, “In Particular”

The sun rises and people wake up from the chaotic haze groggy but cleansed—feeling, in a way, like some demons have been exorcised. Both optimism and pessimism are out the window, and a calm understanding of balance settles in. This song is beautiful. It’s playful, but also very focused. It moves you forward without pushing. We enjoy it very much.

9. Buzzcocks, “E.S.P.”

The great seers left on Earth independently report from far and wide that they have had crisp visions of the Mars colonies in flames, with no water and no survivors. People cheer at the news that the arrogant fools have gotten what they deserve. We love the Buzzcocks. R.I.P. Pete Shelley.

10. Can, “Sing Swan Song”

Earthlings praise the fact that they still somehow have portable water before an empathetic sadness sweeps the crowd. The reality of the Mars dwellers’ suffering sinks in, as well as a grave sense of closure and renewed purpose: The future of humankind is in their hands now. Ege Bamyasi is one of the best albums ever.

11. Funkadelic, “Can You Get To That”

Karma is a bitch. Heavy but inspiring—let’s do things right, together. It’ll be worth it!

Said, “Gonna reap just what you sow,
The debts you make you have to pay.”
Can you get to that?
I recollect with a-mixed emotions
All the good times we used to have.
But you were making preparations
For the coming separation
And you blew everything we had.

12. Neu!, “Hallogallo”

The long, steady process to organize and build a sustainable civilization begins, but for real this time. Maybe the temperature stabilizes and a few miracle babies are born? Does the human race live on? Does the Earth give us another chance? Or swallow us into the sand? This song is perfect for contemplating such things. Also, for long drives.

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