Every day this week Will Butler is writing and recording a song based on a story from British newspaper The Guardian. The first of those songs is “Clean Monday,” a song about the Greek debt crisis that sounds a lot more like Arcade Fire than either of the songs Butler has shared from his upcoming solo debut Policy. Butler’s post-Springsteen bellows here could easily be mistaken for his brother Win, especially against the nervy minor-key post-punk backdrop. “Clean Monday” arrives with a lengthy explanation from Butler:
I’m rooting for Greece. I mean, broadly, who the hell isn’t rooting for Greece? Even if you’re super right wing, or super German, or super capitalist you probably don’t want Greece tumbling out of the Euro and defaulting on its debts.
But beyond that, I like that they’re a young government. I like Yanis Varoufakis, the new finance minister. To a certain extent, I’ve bought into the media portrayal of him (from The Guardian and NPR and all over) as a straight shooting rapscallion who might — just might — be crazy enough to, um, responsibly manage the Greek financial situation?
I was reading The Guardian’s live coverage of the forthcoming Greek proposals of how they’re going to pay off their debts, when a little blurb popped up explaining that the Greek markets were closed today because it was “Clean Monday” — the Greek Orthodox equivalent of Ash Wednesday. It was an amazing/hilarious (well, maybe mildly amusing) coincidence to me that the Greek ministers were scrambling and figuring out how to avoid strict austerity on the day that Lent starts.
And all this scrambling is just to figure out the next few months. It’s gonna be a long winter, and a long spring, and maybe a really long summer for Greece. But my fingers are crossed.
Hear “Clean Monday” below.