Excess ain’t rebellion / You’re drinking what they’re selling
Your self-destruction doesn’t hurt them / Your chaos won’t convert them
From Cake’s “Rock ‘n’ Roll Lifestyle,” on the album Motorcade of Generosity (released in 1994).
Think about it. Let the simple and super-catchy groove draw you in, but don’t let it drown out frontman John McCrea’s lyrics.
From the April 22, 1995 edition of Billboard Magazine, McCrea shares,
“The song, if you want to get right down to it, is not meant to be some sort of front to consumerism necessarily, as much as it is a marveling at the abundance of things. If it’s a diss on anything, it’s a questioning of consumption as a substitute of actually rebelling.”
This isn’t a plug for rebellion, per se, but partially a look at what’s effective when you do have something to say.
It’s also a look at some potential results of the “Rock ‘n’ Roll Lifestyle.” Though communicated somewhat comically and sarcastically in the context of the song, some of these lines are reality for plenty.
Aging black leather and hospital bills / Tattoo removal and dozens of pills
Your liver pays dearly now for your youthful magic moments / But rock on completely with some brand new components