The Denver garage-rock band Bad Licks has released a new song to commemorate — and protest — Donald Trump's inauguration.
Bad Licks is a Denver supergroup started by Rett Rogers (Blue Rider, Nathaniel Rateliff & the Night Sweats). It features fellow Denver stalwarts Alex Eschen (Blue Rider) playing lead guitar; Aaron Collins (Rootbeer and Mermentau) on drums and backup vocals; Nicholas "Rootbeer" Richardson (Rootbeer and Mermentau) on bass; and Mark Shusterman (Blue Rider, Nathaniel Rateliff & the Night Sweats) on keys.
Bad Licks is not an overtly political band, but its sound is defiant. Rogers's lyrics for "Set Them on Fire" touch on some of the United States' recent woes.
"I wrote the lyrics for "Set Them on Fire," in 2015, when Confederate flags were coming down and amid the Baltimore protests that were a response to Freddie Gray," Rogers says. Gray was the African American man who died in the custody of the Baltimore police; his death sparked mass protests nationwide.
Says Rogers about his song: "It's about turning anger into action and fighting against systemic injustice. A lot of issues have come to boil recently, but they've been part of America since its inception."
Many of the best protest songs have been written in the midst political upheaval, and it's good to see the Bad Licks following suit, using today's inauguration as a battle cry and a challenge for fellow artists to do the same.
You can stream, "Set Them on Fire," below.