Review: Bon Iver – AUATC; An Important Commentary

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'AUATC' is not a song I'd purposefully grab for on a playlist, but one that exhibits incredibly important messages

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It’s no secret that Bon Iver make music that’s often cryptic and a comment on society. 22, A Million (2016), Bon Iver’s third studio album, signified a change in their sound in its experimental mannerisms, and Justin Vernon hasn’t looked back since.

‘AUATC’ (an acronym to mean “Ate Up All Their Cake”) follows on from songs like ’22 (OVER S∞∞N)’ in its unique, pitched-up vocals coupled with some more traditional Bon Iver accompaniment, a gorgeous piano.

As a song that recognises the flaws and damages of capitalism, Bon Iver made a statement claiming “We are calling attention to the fight against capitalism and our collective participation in its dominant institutions. Bon Iver acknowledges our own position within and use of capitalistic practices. It is with recognition of our privilege that we are fully committed to using our unique platform to challenge and change capitalism within our industry, and far beyond.”

Listening at a surface level, without the knowledge of the song’s backstory, it’s easily loveable. The pitched-up vocals make ‘AUATC’ a seemingly friendly song that’s easy to listen to. A lot of names went into the making of this too, most notably Bruce Springsteen chipping in on some vocals, and this team-work really paid off.

Once taking into account Bon Iver’s statement regarding capitalism, the single becomes so much more important. It’s not just a cute-sounding song anymore, but one with a vital message.

Bon Iver leave us on this in the description to the music video:

“From celebrating art and music, to empowering women, to liberating incarcerated people, to fighting climate change, these organizations work tirelessly to foster a world that celebrates our humanity on a local, national, and global level. Please explore, support, and take action:

minneapolissanctuary.org
redlettergrant.org
eji.org
nivassoc.org
350.org

‘AUATC’ proves that Bon Iver is more than just Justin Vernon. Bon Iver is music, collective joy, team-work, and fighting for change.

‘AUATC’ is available to listen to now via Jagjaguwar. 

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Live Editor 2019/20 & second year English student. Can usually be found procrastinating my degree at a gig, or trying (and failing) to complete my Goodreads challenge

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