"It's So Easy Being Green" is the fabulous new single from Esther Crow an award-winning songwriter from New York City, and founding member of post-punk rockers The Electric Mess. In addition to being an environmental warrior, she is also a teacher and part-time actor, although where she gets the time, I have no idea. I came across this song recently when I was browsing through Spotify, and I was absolutely blown away by the potency of the lyric and the power and precision of the music.
The song incorporates a delightful call and response technique, where a series of environmental challenges are brought to our attention, and are then disarmed with noticeable flair and lyrical dexterity. Whether this involves 'picking up bottles on the beach', or eating 'more veggies less meat', there are a variety of solutions on display. Incidentally, it is none other than the artist's son Vincent, who steps in to pose these dillemas, ensuring that the song is indeed a truly family affair.
The music has wonderful energy, and further benefits from a slightly sixties flavouring, where jangly guitars meet inspired vocal melodies to complete the three chord magic. The vocals are clear, nonchalant and easy to decipher, revealing perhaps a slight Dylan influence on occasions. The chorus sums up the sentiment succinctly, informing the listener to 'save the planet change your habits', a message that I'm sure we would all support.
This is a truly great song, where somehow the artist has managed to cram copious ideas into a tight space, and yet still come up shining with pop sensibility. The bass and drums are tight and punchy, with the music at times slightly reminiscent of Blondie at their best, which is no bad thing. The music is loaded with attitude, and despite the charming melodic content, you can hear the gutsy post-punk New York delivery just beneath the surface.
This artist is pure class, she has a fantastic message, a great sound, a superb band, and a fabulous generosity of spirit. Perhaps most importantly, she has delivered a song for our times, and done so with style, substance and certainty.
Esther Crow - positive punk.