Despite its very obvious natural beauty, I’m not much of a fan of living in England. I’ve posted before that the small-minded ‘islander’ mentality of at least 52% of the population disgusts me and I’d rather be elsewhere. In many ways, Covid-19 has been a dream for the politicians and policy makers who survive on a diet of anti-immigration rhetoric. Because now ‘we’ can close our borders to refugees, asylum seekers and people who can help to strengthen ‘our’ cultural identity by bringing new creative ideas. This is England and I’d rather be back in Spain.
The fabulous Ali Bla Bla tells me that he has found temporary respite in Kyiv, Ukraine with his wife and new born baby. He left England last summer and will be coming back in the next few months. “Life has been different here than in the UK, a lot more free.“, says Ali. “Being away has allowed me to have a fresh perspective on whats important in life, as well as time to create. We are coming back in the summer and i’m excited to start rock n rolling a bit more again, even if its with a mask on!”
I could ramble on and on about the glorious week that I spent in Kyiv back in 2017. It really is an impressive city and I’d love to get back to see more. But I won’t. It’s not really the point of this post.
The travel and perspective gained from being abroad seems to have invigorated and freshly inspired Ali. Not that he needs much new inspiration based upon the evidence from recent release, ‘Island’. Here, we find Ali rapping over a punkish backing. He tells all about his experience growing up as an immigrant in England. It’s a vital and vibrant listen; urgent, informative and politically astute.
At the song’s core, Ali is still crying about the state of affairs. This is a man who has recognised that “home aint were the heart is, so I’m trying to find the part where i care“. I get that. I’m sure all of us who struggle with the ‘island’ mentality do. It’s a point that Ali touches upon when we exchange E-mails.
“I believe we are all victims of mental oppression in many different ways, and all of us have to find ourselves through the confusion.”, he wisely says.
I hope you all had great bank holiday weekends and the week ahead holds unforeseen pleasure.