Now whip it
Shape it up
Try to detect it
It’s not too late
To whip it
Whip it good
"Dear God" by XTC — Well, if it’s sacrilege, you want to stay away from then you want to stay away from this, though this song by XTC seems to turn in on itself. On the one hand, it is a direct address or almost a letter to God with what seems to be a young girl singing (or boy perhaps), and at the same time, he says, “I can’t believe in you.” It does seem odd to write a letter to someone or something you don’t “believe in”, and while I think this is one of XTC’s finest and most poignant songs, I wish it didn’t turn in on itself like this. That said, it’s still a great song. For those of you who are deeply religious, you may wish to stop reading now. Remember, I didn’t write the lyrics here, I’m merely the messenger, though I admit, I think he makes some very, very valid points here. Here’s a taste (and I don’t put the rest of the lyrics because frankly, they only get rougher as the song goes on and as it picks up speed):
- Dear God, hope you got the letter, and...
I pray you can make it better down here.
I don't mean a big reduction in the price of beer
but all the people that you made in your image, see
them starving on their feet 'cause they don't get
enough to eat from God, I can't believe in you
Sorry to disturb you,
But I feel that I should be heard loud and clear.
We all need a big reduction in amount of tears,
And all the people that you made in your image,
See them fighting in the street,
’cause they can’t make opinions meet,
I can’t believe in you...
The song ends with a sarcastic, “Dear God….” Not for the faint of heart, and I’m pretty religious, and yet find a lot of merit in this song. It’s worth keeping an open mind.
Look for Volume 11, Part 1 next Tuesday. Until then, thanks for reading and thanks for tuning in, as ever,