grandson – ‘A Modern Tragedy Vol. 2’

By Yasmin Brown

grandson, aka Jordan Benjamin, is new to the music scene but has already made a name for himself through his provocative and uncensored lyrics that convey his strong opinions about the world. Hailing from Canada/The U.S., Benjamin has been immersed in what sometimes appear to be an apocalyptic reality, and his angry, erratic music highlights his thoughts on a number of hot topics born out of polarised politics and a nation that often seems to be fuelled by panic.

His latest release is the second chapter of his Modern Tragedy series, which kicks off with latest single ‘Apologize’ which acts as a reminder to let go of the past whilst refusing to regret any past experiences or actions. ‘Stigmata’ follows, and is the heaviest, angriest track on this EP – an attack of sorts on censorship and the treatment of whistleblowers who are only trying to bring truth to the world.

Ultimately, this second chapter feels more motivating and inspiring than it’s predecessor, pulling from personal experience to offer advice, though not always in a positive way. ‘Is This What You Wanted’ addresses people not understanding that it’s possible for music and politics to overlap, and how people who embrace this overlap are treated. It’s a definite ‘fuck you’ – highlighted not only by the lyrics, but also the aggressive tone – and can be seen as Benjamin telling his fans to not give up when you feel vilified.

‘Fallin (Temptation)’ is more hip-hop inspired than most of grandson’s previous material, touching on our lack of willpower and tendency to repeat our mistakes, a concept cemented by simple yet powerful line: “I said it was the last time, last time”. It leads into ‘Darkside’, which is the closest this EP comes to resembling 2018’s Volume 1, both musically and thematically. Again we find Benjamin blaming the corporation and lack of governmental health support for the inevitable violence affecting America’s youth.

‘A Modern Tragedy Vol. 2’ is an important continuation of the message grandson is trying to communicate through his platform. It’s deliberate and aggressive, demanding change on a systemic level by highlighting ingrained issues within society. Sonically, it’s catchy and fierce and will undoubtedly start conversations that need to be had both in the U.S. and worldwide.

YASMIN BROWN

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