Costumes /// Nick Noon

Each election cycle, there are new actors that audition for their desired role in our democracy. Some are well-trained thespians with impeccable diction, while others are two-bit clowns spewing out word salad. Altogether, it’s only one act in the elaborate stage show known as American democracy. Nashville alt-rocker Nick Noon confronts the guises of altruism presented by political figures with his latest single, “Costumes.” A darkly symphonic brand of alternative rock, this song is an irreverent unmasking of the American political system.

On “Costumes,” Noon has devised a melody of shady elegance. It mirrors the notion of a  shadowy cabal of power brokers, who are bent on swaying the masses to their own personal whims. As seductive as it sounds on the surface, “Costumes’ ‘ has a hint of an unsettling undercurrent that threatens to rip back the dignified veil of what Noon’s cultivated. Much like how politicians contort themselves into an electable aesthetic, this tune manipulates itself into its most pleasing form.

At the center of “Costumes” is Noon’s ability as a compelling lyricist. Here, he cynically paints the concept of power with the same aristocratic brush. Instead of blatantly branding a particular ideology or party as the enemy, Noon spins a lyrical philosophy of healthy skepticism. The “costumes” in question are carefully created by teams of advisers, not by the individual tasked with wearing it. 

In addition, Noon takes a stab at the contemporary issue of our incredibly divisive, political landscape. In particular, he calls upon the cultism of a party and being sold a manufactured ideology as an example of how leaders play the people as pawns. In turn, whatever “rapports” we create with each other are undercut by the “feuds” of rival parties that want to drive a political wedge in exchange for votes.

“Costumes” is timely, but also timeless in scope. Noon shines a light on how those who want our vote may only see us as a means to an end. At the same time, it’s a cautionary reminder of how leadership can be weaponized to sow division among those that they govern.

Written by Travis Boyer




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