Song Review: St. Vincent, ‘Digital Witness’

St. Vincent

Artist: St. Vincent
Song: “Digital Witness”
Album: St. Vincent (out February 25th)
Label: Loma Vista Recordings

Rating: 9/10

Finally, a track that both maligns and celebrates what it truly means to be thoroughly Millennial. As biting as it is tender, this funky chunk of satire plays to Annie Clark’s seemingly endless strengths — which, given the consistent quality of her work, should come as no surprise to anyone. In a recent press release announcing her upcoming self-titled album, Annie said she “wanted to make a party record you could play at a funeral.” “Digital Witness” nails that sentiment proudly to the wall with the line “If I can’t show it / If you can’t see me / What’s the point of doing anything?”

In our ever-expanding “selfie culture,” there is no more inevitable and earned a gift than profound self-awareness.  However, there’s a newfound fear in many of us that such ubiquitous selfie pride will eventually render such displays as static, and thus, cloak participants in a blanket of white noise. What is pride when everyone is proud? Conformity?

The death of privacy demands a certain amount of ponderousness, yes; but — as “Digital Witness” makes clear — it also demands an equal amount of restlessness about the future, both immediate and distant.

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