Joshua Powell – Bliss Is a Flak Jacket

by | Mar 11, 2019 | Song of the Day

We each bear a talisman, a shield over our heart against the slings and arrows hurled by Life and Love. A door sealed by an ancient skeleton key, your father’s tortoiseshell sunglasses, a punctuality pin from a private academy, a suitcase carrying Shelly and the Secret Universe. But the barrier that turns away terror equally deflects the hand that extends a comforting touch.

In ‘Bliss Is a Flak Jacket,’ Joshua Powell ponders a world of randomness, unmet expectations, and an unknown future. Domestic happiness may be a flak jack, but a few bits of burning metal have penetrated the seams.

I’m thinking back about the time you read my palm;
And God, I hope you did it wrong
Bliss? Bliss is a flak jacket
Guilt is the shrapnel/coat rack I’ve since sought to expel

‘Bliss Is a Flak Jacket’ forms the perfect pairing of pop and psychedelia, a plethora of melodic hooks and lasting lyrical images. The tag line will overshoot your flak jacket and embed itself pleasantly in your brain.

Joshua Powell is based in Indianapolis, Indiana. ‘Bliss Is a Flak Jacket’ is from his new eleven-song album, PSYCHO​/​TROPIC. Joshua’s Bandcamp biography describes him as ‘an artist from Indianapolis with a literate brand of psychedelic indie rock that is simultaneously socially conscious and spiritually turbulent.’ In an illuminating interview published by Music of the Future, Joshua reveals that the new album is a lever to free himself from ‘the sonic limitations of folk music’ and to set ‘a new zero point for my artistic career.’

You can support deserving independent musicians like Joshua Powell by visiting his Bandcamp page, listening to his songs, and downloading your favorite tracks. And be sure to follow Joshua on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.

Charles Norman is a writer and historian. His interests include music, the movies of Wes Anderson and Christopher Guest, and The Office.  Email:

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