Low Ceilings – Internet Forever

by | Oct 26, 2020 | Music, Song of the Day

Internet access is a basic human right. The words of my friend — a charter member of the Wokenoscenti, those who have been placed on this Earth to provide the rest of us with the correct opinion on every social issue — was a Statement of Fact, engraved on a stone tablet by the Hand of God and placed on the coffee table before me for my own edification and not as a topic of discussion. I knew that the only acceptable response was to mutely nod my head.

Being of a pre-internet generation, my instinctive reaction is that anything that I didn’t have when I was growing up is a luxury, not a necessity. By gawd we only had three TV stations an’ we had to get up an’ walk across the room to change the channel an’ we went to the moon an’ back by gawd.

But upon further review, if education is a basic human right, and if internet access is required for an education in this modern world, then it’s a short step to the conclusion that the government is obligated to provide each child with internet access, a router, a device complete with software, and a large rubber ball loaded into a catapult and aimed at the child’s head for activation during Zoom Dodgeball.

If a job is a basic human right, and if internet access is required to find employment, then the bourgeoisie should pay to connect the proletariat masses to the world. Those of us who have progressed beyond the workforce will presumably be placed on an ice flow where internet access will not markedly improve our Condition, but a few Cat vs. Printer videos might help to pass the time as we wait for the ice to melt.

What remains to be determined is whether this basic human right of internet access will contribute to our Pursuit of Happiness. Google (that ain’t a verb by gawd) ‘internet makes me sad’ and behold the results. Multiple studies have concluded that passive internet usage is linked to depression. I know that I become depressed just by browsing the Google Analytics reports for reverbraccoon.com. How many of us, after cycling multiple times through our favorite news sites and social media accounts, have looked up from the screen and asked Is that it?

With ‘Internet Forever,’ Low Ceilings steps beyond the basic issue of what we’re gaining from all this link-clicking, and asks the more existential question of where and how we each fit within this vast matrix of usernames, bots, filtered faces, information, disinformation, games, apps, and cat pictures. How do we construct our identities among all of the trends, cultural shifts, technological milestones, and changing mores? The answer: we don’t know, and we may never know.

Well I’ve been watching a little TV / And taking it easy on my back and feet / But I’m always feeling worn out, hammered down, half-there, and incomplete / And I don’t know if it’s because I spend my time online / But those other folks look like they’re doing fine / Those other folks sure look like they’re alright… Ultra-memetic, it feels so synthetic to me / Is the fool in the rear facing camera who i wanted to be? / I read every day, like the news / all the ways that we try to reduce / nuanced issues to absolute truths / and we do

‘Internet Forever’ is folk with a pop sensibility. Or perhaps the other way around. A simple but memorable melody over a handful of chords is highlighted by beautiful guitar figures while an organ bubbles just beneath the surface.

Low Ceilings is the solo project of Ben Mueller, based in Windsor, Connecticut. Low Ceilings’ music tactfully straddles the line between lush arrangements and intimate, basementy lo-fi in a way that only a college career in the Boston DIY scene could make possible, we read on the project’s website. ‘Internet Forever’ appears with ‘The Worst Times’ on Low Ceilings’ new double-single. We previously featured ‘Just Exactly,’ from Low Ceilings’ ten-song album, Learn to Sew, released last January.

The music of Low Ceilings is available on Bandcamp, Spotify, and Apple Music. And be sure to follow Low Ceilings on Instagram and Facebook.

Charles Norman is a writer and historian. Email: reverb.raccoon@gmail.com. Or follow on Instagram and Facebook.

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