What do you do when you’re tired of writing about love and relationships? If you’re Eric Anders, you write anti-Trump political battle hymns.
The Californian singer-songwriter released his ten-song anti-Trump album, Eleven Nine April 20. It’s not only well-written but well-produced. It’s also a robust listen for those who are frustrated with the country’s political climate over the last six months.
Eleven Nine is certainly powerful on all fronts. Heavy lyrics, simplistic yet beautiful melodies, and an overall production that paints a detailed picture with every track.
And speaking of pictures, the album’s artwork tells you about all you need to know about where Anders stands.
The album is named after the the day President Donald Trump was elected, 11/9/2016. There’s no question the current POTUS is the most polarizing this generation has ever seen. Anders, who had already written an anti-Bush album, took it upon himself to write his third political LP, looping in his talented nephew, Tyler Nuffer, to play solid acoustic, electric, lap steel and yes, even slide, guitar.
Anders’ creative range doesn’t appear vast. However, his ability to write profound lyrics and deliver it in such a mesmerizing way is certainly something to be admired. Many of the songs on Eleven Nine are like being in an intense argument with someone, but keeping your cool, delivering a dagger to the heart with just a few words.
Lines from “Looking Forward To Your Fall”
Talked about “great again”
Racist whistle call
Jim Crow all over again
More than okay with it all
You don’t care at all
And powerful words from “Do You Feel”
Painted on the walls
And we’re ripped right back
Through the culture wars
Don’t want to go
And I want to know
What you feel
For other souls?
And I can’t believe
You don’t feel it
When you see
See us suffer so
And while many of the songs carry a similar tone, they each grab you in different ways.
“This Fire Has Burned Too Long” is a heart-felt opening ballad that hints today’s political climate started long ago, that we are the arsons of our own society.
“How Low And Why” is mellow yet intense, and calls out anyone who refuses to stand up against injustice.
“Do You Feel” is melancholy.
“Big World Abide” is sultry.
“A Man For No Season” is meditative, contemplative, and yes, has that fantastic slide guitar. I love slide guitar.
Throw in a CCR cover and a folky “I Hear Them All” and Eleven Nine proves to be the progressive, indie-rock anthem for 2017.
The singer-songwriter is also donating all of the album proceeds from Eleven Nine to Lambda Legal, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit committed to achieving full civil rights of lesbians, gay men, bisexuals, transgender people and everyone living with HIV.
And I must add that closing the album with “I Hear Them All” (altered) AKA “This Land is Your Land” is brilliant and worth the listen.
Anders’ music may be too polarizing for popular radio. But there’s no question it belongs in documentaries, political protests, and hell, maybe even the national archive.
It’s not easy to write songs that can connect with people. It’s even tougher to do so while making a political statement. Anders does it.