The Heartless Bastards, a Cincinnati-based garage rock group led by vocalist/guitarist Erika Wennerstrom, have released a new single titled “Revolution”, marking the band’s first new music since 2015.
“Revolution” will appear on a forthcoming, yet unnamed, album that will serve as a follow-up to 2015’s Restless Ones. Though only two members remain from the original lineup, Wennerstrom and bassist Jesse Ebaugh, “Revolution” is reminiscent of earlier work on albums like Stairs and Elevators (2004) and All This Time (2006). With Lauren Gurgiolo on guitar, Jesse Chandler on keys, Gregory Clifford on drums, and Kevin Ratterman on percussion, the song starts slow before building into a heavier and more uptempo sound, much like “Runnin” on the band’s debut album.
Lyrically, Wennerstrom pushes the ideas of appreciating the little things in life, self-growth, and helping those in need—themes she has preached since the days of Stairs and Elevators with songs like “New Resolution” and “Lazy”. The eponymous refrain, “The revolution is in your mind,” instills the importance of self-actualization and action.
Wennerstrom provided an in-depth explanation of “Revolution” in a statement in the song’s YouTube description,
Revolution is about self love. I think if people loved themselves more there wouldn’t be racism, bigotry, and classism. Some people are so worried that there is not enough pie to go around, and that lifting up others limits their own opportunity. There is mass misinformation and manipulation to peddle this narrative. Money, materialism, privileged access to better education are things people constantly measure themselves with. The need to feel better than someone in order to feel good about oneself is an age old insecurity. I think there’s fear there too. So many struggle to get ahead because they’re afraid of getting left behind. The planet really can’t sustain everyone having more. Everything is made to fall apart like cars, and $1100 cell phones. I think humanity needs to learn how to have less, and not play into the commercialism that constantly sends the message we lack things that we don’t really need. Revolution is a mantra, and reminder to myself to avoid playing the game as much as I can. I don’t need this, and I don’t need that. I don’t need to compare myself to others. This marathon everybody is running is exhausting. There is so much true suffering in this world with a lack of food, shelter, and basic running water, and if you suffer depression and anxiety remind yourself of that, and try to possibly be of service to someone in need, and not even necessarily with writing a check, but with even something as simple as kind energy, and compassion. True connection. The more man attempts to look at the world from another man’s perspective it becomes apparent how connected we all really are. Dave Chapelle said at a show years ago “ Poverty is a state of mind.” That really stuck with me. I was in the Amazon several years ago, and it struck me how little people had materially, and children were running around and they all seemed so happy. Aside from the basic necessities of sustaining our lives I think giving and receiving love is really what we need the most. All the rest is just a bunch of noise.
Listen to the new song below and head to the band’s website for the latest information on their forthcoming album.
Heartless Bastards – “Revolution”