People And NatureGlobal warming is upsetting the monsoon, making droughts more likely, and changing the lives of hundreds of millions of Indians, writes Nagraj Adve, in a guest post based on his pamphlet, Global Warming in the Indian Context. 

The average sea level rise worldwide over 2016-2020 was nearly half a centimetre per year, says the United in Science 2020 report, published last month by the World Meteorological Organisation (WMO), Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) and other scientific institutions.

Photo: Fridays for Future Guwahati

The rate of sea level rise is now significantly higher than the 20th century average, largely due to the loss of ice from the great ice sheets on Antarctica and Greenland, besides warmer ocean waters expanding.

Reading the United in Science 2020 report made me think about sea level rise in terms of centimetres rather than millimetres – for the first time in the 15 years that I have been engaging with the climate crisis.

The impact of rising waters in the Indian sub-continent is one of the many issues covered in a new edition of my pamphlet, Global Warming in the Indian Context, published today by People & Nature. I have updated the pamphlet – which was first published on People & Nature in June 2016 – to highlight many things about the climate crisis that have changed since then.

But the first thing to emphasise is that the social context in which climate change hits people in India is very different from that in the UK or mainland Europe.

■ In India, 650 million people rely on agriculture or related occupations; the average landholding per household is merely 2.5 acres, and half the area is under key crops such as rice and wheat;

■ Millions of small and marginal farmers have no access to irrigation, are entirely dependent on the rain, and hence more vulnerable to climatic changes; and

■ In the world’s most disastrous Covid-induced lockdown, 120 million people have lost their jobs or livelihoods – and there is no sign of economic recovery in sight.

Extreme climatic events have been getting more intense and frequent in India (and worldwide) in recent years – particularly extreme rainfall events. These result in floods, loss of property, and deaths – such as in the southern state of Kerala in August 2018, in which 350 people died. Simultaneously, there has also been a decline in the summer monsoon, from which India gets 75 per cent of its annual rainfall.

Climate change has this capacity to throw seemingly paradoxical impacts at you.

Besides air pollutants, one key reason for this lesser rain is that the Indian Ocean has been warming at a faster rate than the Indian landmass, and hence reducing the temperature differential between ocean and land that drives the Indian monsoon.

A fact not often discussed in popular writing or media reporting is that a warmer Indian Ocean is a common factor in several climatic changes in India: the wider spread of droughts, increased extreme rainfall, longer heat waves, and an increase in the frequency and duration of rainstorms, among others.

It has also contributed to droughts that have affected millions of poor people in Somalia, Zimbabwe, and other parts of Africa over the past four years.

Another trend that has intensified in recent years has been the falling prices of renewables. Solar power capacity in India has been expanded significantly (from about 5000 megawatts (MW) in 2016 to about 36,000 MW currently).

India’s is one of the few right-wing governments to support solar power, in sharp contrast to those in Brazil, Australia, and the US. However, unionisation is almost non-existent among the workforces of wind and solar companies in India, though a few unions and some policy think-tanks have begun to recently engage with how the energy transition in India would affect employment levels, the nature of work, and working conditions.

Photo: Fridays for Future India

Though the energy transition has barely begun particularly beyond the electricity subsector, both in India and worldwide, it is essential that workers and unions be integral to the process and part of the conversation, as a recent post on this website correctly emphasised.

An important shift that has taken place in recent years has been in the climate movement from below.

The eruption of protests organized by Extinction Rebellion (XR) and Fridays for Future (FFF) in the UK and mainland Europe ― along with in-your-face extreme events such as the raging fires in Australia and the western United States ― has pushed the climate crisis into wider consciousness almost everywhere.

In the United States, aided by the Sunrise movement, this is reflected in climate change becoming part of the mainstream electoral discourse, around the Green New Deal. In India, over the last 18 months, it has spawned a number of organizations that have adopted these two names, XR and FFF, in towns large and small.

India had no climate movement, in my view, but a bunch of NGOs doing their thing, for the last 25 years.

Now, encouragingly, we have the beginnings of one. A few of these organisations appreciate something important: the need to go beyond campaigning on WhatsApp, Facebook, and other social media platforms, and to build relationships with movements organized around people’s control over common resources and against mining and other extractive industries.

So, some things have changed, but what has remained the same are the roots of the problem: the centrality of inequality and capitalism to the climate crisis.

Inequalities continue to intensify, in India and worldwide. In India, 1 per cent of the population reportedly owns 58 per cent of the country’s wealth. Covid-19 hasn’t changed things: the recent rise in stock market valuations in the United States, and anecdotal evidence of consumption patterns in China suggest that the rich are yet again managing to pass on the burdens of an economic crisis on working people everywhere.

Therefore, as well as engaging with, and reducing emissions from intermediate systems such as electricity, transport, buildings, and agriculture, we simply can not address global warming satisfactorily unless these structural core issues that connect with justice and equity are given primacy and tackled head on.

Video: Nagraj Adve introducing his pamphlet Global Warming in the Indian Context

The pamphlet Global Warming in the Indian Context is FREE to download here. It covers five areas, broadly: the science of global warming; the roots of the crisis; climate impacts in India and globally, which inordinately hits those least responsible – the poor and other species; climate politics, including the Paris Agreement; and finally, some suggestions about what we can do, individually and collectively. It has been updated to include what the Covid-19 lockdowns would imply for current emissions, and other effects; key findings from a recent landmark report on climatic changes in India; information from the United in Science report mentioned above; and China’s new emissions pledges announced by President Xi Jinping on 22 September.

Download Global Warming in the Indian Context (pdf) – or read it on line here.

■ Nagraj Adve is a member of Teachers Against the Climate Crisis (TACC) and South Asian People’s Action Against Climate Crisis (SAPACC). He writes and gives talks in colleges on the science, impacts, and politics of global warming. Follow him, and TACC, on twitter.

India Climate Crisis ➖ This Is About Capitalism And Inequality

Irish Examiner ✈ Single mums claiming social welfare are often made to feel "intimidated and bullied" by inspectors.

Aoife Moore  
The Irish Examiner spoke to a number of women who say unannounced visits to their homes while on lone-parent payments made them feel "worthless".

They claim they were told that if they entered a relationship they would lose the payment, and said inspectors would visit their homes unannounced, opening wardrobes looking for men's clothes, and questioning them about cars parked outside.

Niamh, from Cork, told the Irish Examiner

It was degrading. One fella used to park outside my house before the school run and follow me to the school, and in the evening if I went out to get coal or anything he'd be there too. I was so scared. I was out in the country on my own with three kids.

Continue reading @ Irish Examiner.

Single Mothers On Welfare Feel 'Bullied' By Inspectors

Sinn Fein has always seen itself as ‘Ourselves Alone’. But as the second wave of Covid 19 deepens, could having to work with other parties in a Pan-Pandemic Front rob Sinn Fein of its independent identity? That’s the controversial analysis provided by political commentator Dr John Coulter today.

If there’s one political conclusion which we can draw from the pandemic crisis of 2020, its that parties have had to work together to combat and defeat the virus and that political point scoring has had to be relegated to the back benches.

But try telling the republican movement that! The scenes at the funeral of veteran republican Bobby Storey along with Sinn Fein elected representatives snipping at Unionists in the face of the March lockdown could well lay the foundations for electoral damage to Sinn Fein on a scale not see since the disastrous Foyle Westminster defeat which witnessed the SDLP take back John Hume’s old Commons seat from the Shinners.

Throw in the eventual outcome of last December’s Dail election which saw an historic coalition of ‘auld foes’ Fianna Fail and Fine Gael to keep a resurgent Sinn Fein out of government in Leinster House, and the image of Sinn Fein’s historical tradition of ‘Ourselves Alone’ begins to falter.

The pandemic is no respecter of political voting trends and has forced political parties of all shades to have to work together across Ireland to protect the health services and contain the virus. Working with other parties does not sit easy with a party whose central ethos is ‘ourselves alone’.

Of course, Sinn Fein can return the serve over my last paragraph by claiming it alone is the true force fighting for Irish unity, equally claiming that other nationalist parties’ visions of unity involve, at the very least, the British still holding the purse strings.

In this respect, Sinn Fein has never moved beyond the argument over whether to accept or reject the Anglo-Irish Treaty of the 1920s which saw the island partitioned, the creation of Northern Ireland in 1921, and the outbreak of the vicious Irish Civil War which saw republican butcher republican in a manner which made the notorious Black and Tans seem disciplined and honourable.

As a result of the Hume/Adams talks, Sinn Fein was brought in from the cold politically and the party became the leading voice for Northern nationalism by ‘stealing’ the SDLP’s traditional middle class Catholic voter heartlands.

The SDLP continues to play political ‘second fiddle’ to Sinn Fein. In the Northern Ireland Assembly, Sinn Fein collapsed its ‘partnership’ with the DUP leaving Northern Ireland without a working government for three years.

In the republic, Sinn Fein presented itself as the party of protest against austerity and the establishment parties. But if the Stormont example was taken as a benchmark, even if Sinn Fein had become a part of a Leinster House coalition government, how long would that government have lasted until we had another ‘Stormont-style collapse’ south of the border?

Has Sinn Fein gained the reputation of being the ‘wrecking ball’ of Irish politics? Indeed, was the spark which prompted Fianna Fail and Fine Gael to bury their political differences and form a unique ‘rainbow coalition’ the fact that no one can work with the ‘ourselves alone’ party no matter how many Sinn Fein TDs occupy the hallowed benches of the Leinster House chamber.

Okay, it may have taken several weeks of hard bargaining to get the Fianna Fail/Fine Gael partnership up and running, but that delay was better than risking a re-run of the Assembly-style meltdown which occurred north of the border.

Sinn Fein would have to recognise that the key mistake it made in last year’s Dail General Election was not running enough candidates. And equally clearly, Fianna Fail and Fine Gael do not want another General Election in the next couple of years which could see Sinn Fein muster enough TDs that either establishment party would have no other choice but to form a coalition government with the republican movement’s political wing.

But apart from the era of the Chuckle Brothers onwards, Sinn Fein - since its formation in 1905 - has never truly been a party of government in Ireland. It has always worked best as a party of ‘stand alone’ opposition, snipping with cleverly worded spin at other nationalist parties, parties of the Left, and the Unionists.

The Chuckle Brothers routine of the late Ian Paisley senior and the late Martin McGuinness worked effectively because of the personalities of both these ‘big hitters’ in Northern politics. But the Arlene Foster/Michelle O’Neill relationship can never be spun as the Chuckle Sisters.

The SDLP’s capture of Foyle and South Belfast in the 2019 Westminster poll has given moderate nationalism the hope that it can find the ‘much sought after chink’ in republicanism’s electoral armour.

The Sinn Fein/DUP axis at Stormont will be put under even bigger strain because of Unionist unhappiness about the DUP’s track record. The failure of the DUP to take North Down (which fell to Alliance) and the equally damaging failure to hold North Belfast (which fell to Sinn Fein) in 2019 may make DUP strategists think that remaining in bed politically with Sinn Fein at Stormont is ultimately damaging the party.

After Paisley senior stepped aside as First Minister, Martin McGuinness knew that time was not on his side in maintaining any working semblance of a Chuckle Brothers ‘smooth government’.

One of his last acts was to collapse the Stormont Executive to allow Southern Sinn Fein a fighting chance of getting into coalition government in the Dail. That backfired after his death because Sinn Fein miscalculated the mood south of the border in terms of ‘work with anyone but the Shinners!’

Sinn Fein has to be seen as singing from the same community hymn sheet of defeating the virus as the other parties. If not, and it insists on ‘ourselves alone’, will the electorate punish Sinn Fein at future elections?

Oh yes, Sinn Fein can say it can always rely on its faithful working class heartlands. But how will the Storey funeral scenes play out with the Catholic middle class forced to endure socially distanced family funerals?

Then again, if Sinn Fein does play ball with the other parties in the defeat of the virus, how will republican heartlands view the fact of Sinn Fein being sucked even more into the British democratic process so that the party becomes nothing more than a revamped version of the now defunct Irish Independence Party?

Then there’s Aontu. Okay, just a minority movement at the moment which poses no electoral threat to Sinn Fein. But then again, the pandemic lockdown has seen a massive interest in religious worship in terms of online services.

Given Aontu’s emphasis on the rights of the unborn, is there the possibility that online worship could translate into voter support for Aontu? But maybe that’s a political migraine for Sinn Fein for another day! 

 Follow Dr John Coulter on Twitter @JohnAHCoulter

 Listen to Dr John Coulter’s religious show, Call In Coulter, every Saturday morning   around 9.30 am on Belfast’s Christian radio station, Sunshine 1049 FM, or listen online   at

Could Covid Sound Death Knell For Sinn Fein?


A Morning Thought @ 865

Anthony McIntyre
tells the Belfast Telegraph why he thinks Glentoran made the right decision  over the controversial signing of a convicted sex offender

Allan Preston

A former republican prisoner and Glentoran fan has defended the Belfast club over the controversial signing of striker Jay Donnelly.

News that the convicted sex offender was joining the club caused outrage among many fans who said they would no longer attend games in protest.

Club manager Mick McDermott has defended the decision, but a women’s group in Belfast accused the club of using language that made excuses for his offence.

Donnelly (25) served a three month jail sentence last year after sharing a video without permission of him having sex with a 16-year-old girl when he was aged 20.

He signed for the Glens earlier this month, and made his debut on Friday night in a friendly against Warrenpoint Town.

Speaking to the Belfast Telegraph, Anthony McIntyre said he supported the club’s decision and believed there could be value in giving former prisoners a second chance.

“He should be given the opportunity. I’m a great believer in the Nietzsche observation that ‘beware all of those in whom the desire to punish is strong’,” he told the Belfast Telegraph.

He did this time for a very wrong offence. The judge did not say he should never be allowed to play football again. I don’t believe that Glentoran are promoting, as a role model, a sex offender. I believe that Glentoran are promoting as a role model somebody who made a mistake and can be a foil against the type of activity for which he was convicted. I can’t see the point in suppressing him; to suppress his creativity, allowing him to drift into despair, depression or isolation. To become unemployable, to be denied to deploy the only skill and possibly re-offend again.

He said calls for a ban for life were “overly punitive,” noting the same calls had been seen before for Ulster players Paddy Jackson and Stuart Olding.

The players were cleared of rape charges in 2018 but sacked from Ulster and Ireland for sending derogatory text messages about women. Both men went on to resume their careers with other clubs.

Mr McIntyre said he agreed with the Glentoran manager that Donnelly’s experience could be used to educate young men, and said he would feel comfortable bringing his own 19-year-old daughter to games.

I would say ‘there’s a guy who was convicted of a sex offence and through the intervention of the Glentoran management has managed to hopefully turn his life around and work to educate young people on the stupidity and egregiousness of being involved in that type of activity’.

He added:

If he decides to become involved in programmes to help re-educate young people, they can learn from his experience. So if there’s a chance that could help other people avoid sexual assault I think that’s a plus. I’m a former republican prisoner but if someone was to tell me there’s a UVF prisoner who killed a Catholic is now playing for Glentoran, and if I would stop supporting the team, I would say ‘no, I think that guy should be given that opportunity.'

On Friday night Donnelly came on as a substitute in the 3-0 friendly win against Warrenpoint at the Oval. Afterwards he tweeted: “Delighted to make my debut for Glentoran and get few minutes under my belt. Wanna thank the fans for lovely reception, on to the next one.”

⏩Follow on Twitter @AnthonyMcIntyre.

Glentoran's Jay Donnelly Deserves An Opportunity, Says Ex-Prisoner

Michael Nugent with the sixteenth in a series of pieces on whether gods exist.  

What is morality? This is the sixteenth of a series of short posts about whether gods exist and why the question is an important one.

What do I mean by morality? I make a distinction between good and bad, which relate to outcomes, and right and wrong, which relate to intentions.

An outcome is objectively bad for a sentient being if it harms that sentient being by causing it to needlessly suffer. An action is objectively wrong if the agent of the action unjustly harms a sentient being. 

Photo: star cluster NGC 3201 from NASA & ESA/Hubble

In any given situation, because so many factors are interacting, it can be easy or hard to know what is good and bad or right and wrong.

However, if there was an all-good, all-knowing, all-powerful god that is the source of morality and cares about human beings on planet Earth, then at a minimum, we would expect it to be able to give us all the same moral message.

If that happened, we would expect to see that different sets of people at different times and different places in the world would have the same sense of morality. But this not what we see.

On the other hand, if there are no gods, then we would expect to see that different sets of people at different times and different places in the world would be evolving different ideas and codes of morality. And this is indeed what we do see.

In parallel to applying reason to the evidence of reality, in order to try to understand what is objectively true about reality, we can also apply reason to the evidence of our behaviour, in order to try to understand what is objectively true about morality.

It is simply false to suggest that we need the idea of a god to assist us in doing this. There are many approaches to moral philosophy that do not invoke gods.
Michael Nugent is Chair of Atheist Ireland

Do Gods Exist? 16 ➤ What Is Morality?

Jane Donnelly from Atheist Ireland ✈ Atheist rights breached when witnesses in court made to swear on the Bible. 

In Ireland high public office is only for the religious, and our court system ignores the rights of atheists, despite the fact that we pride ourselves on our human rights record and promote freedom of religion and belief around the world.

I recently had to make an affidavit, and the solicitor asked me which religious book I wanted. I had to tell her, in a public office, that I did not want any religious book as I was an atheist.

I was annoyed and she was embarrassed when I told her that she was breaching my right to freedom of religion and belief, by putting me in a position where I had to declare my atheism.

Thankfully this particular problem is about to end. The Civil Law and Criminal Law (Miscellaneous Provisions) Bill 2020 will allow us to make affidavits without revealing our personal beliefs.

Continue reading @ Irish Times.

Religious Oaths Must Be Removed From State Activities

Right Wing Watch“Anti-Catholic bigotry has no place in the United States of America,” President Donald Trump said two weeks ago in a hyperpartisan video message to the charitable Alfred E. Smith Memorial Foundation, claiming in the next breath that such bigotry “predominates in the Democrat Party.” 

Peter Montgomery 
It’s a preposterous claim, considering that the two top figures in the Democratic ​Party—presidential nominee Joe Biden and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi—are practicing Catholics.

That kind of divisive smear is sadly not surprising coming from Trump; as the editors of the lay Catholic magazine Commonweal editorialized recently, “What sets Trump apart, and makes this election so urgently important, is the viciousness of the man himself: his malice and well-documented mendacity, his callousness and incompetence, his total lack of scruples.”

‘Anti-Catholic’ Smears as Political Tactic

Even before Trump went along with demands from his religious-right supporters that he nominate Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court, right-wing groups were dusting off the dishonest “anti-Catholic” playbook that they have turned to again and again—accusing Democratic senators who raise questions about judicial nominee​s​’ judicial philosophy of being anti-religious, and often specifically anti-Catholic.

Continue reading @ Right Wing Watch.

‘Anti-Catholic’ Smears And Anti-Catholic Bigotry In Trump’s Base

A Morning Thought @ 864

Thomas Dixie Elliot ➨ Before I begin, I wear a mask when I enter a shop or anywhere in which I might cause people to feel uncomfortable by me not wearing a mask. 

There are many who feel safer wearing masks and they are fully entitled to feel safer in any environment that is shared with other people.

However, my problem lies with those who are trying to stifle the differences of opinions of those of us who believe that lockdowns are not effective in preventing the spread of a virus that will still be there when we go back to any kind of normality. It'll merely begin all over again further down the line. 

Why aren't we asking about what damage to the economy these lockdowns will do? What about those many people who can't work from home? The electricians, the plumbers, the brickies etc? 

Why have so many people become like sheep and doing the government's dirty work by pointing the finger at those who stand up and question what is happening or more importantly not happening?

In fact, why aren't the fingers pointing at those who left the Health Service in a position where it struggles to fight to save those lives which are at risk from this virus, namely the British Tory and Labour parties? Their counterparts in the south of Ireland have done exactly the same in recent decades. 

Yet here in the North our so called political leaders are in fact taking the lead from those who sought to destroy our health services, North and South. They are taking the lead from political lunatics like Boris Johnson. 

Why aren't fingers being pointed at those politicians both North and South who took pay rises while, particularly here in the North, they froze nurse's pay? 

There's a shameful silence with very little finger pointing in that regard.

What about the millions wasted by the scams like RHI? Money which could have gone a long way to strengthening our health services and providing more ICU beds? 

Again a shameful silence. 

Then there is the political opportunism which has begun to rear it's ugly head, particularly the attacks on Dr. Anne McCloskey. I first noticed this when someone posted about Dr. McCloskey on Twitter, blaming her for the increase in Derry and Strabane. A post that was also calling for a petition to have her struck from the medical register for merely stepping up and voicing her opinion.

What struck me was that Colum Eastwood was tagging other members of AontĂș, below the post, in an obvious attempt at having them burned at the stake as well. 

More recently his party colleague Sinead McLaughlin launched into an attack on Anne McCloskey, blaming her for the increased infection rate in Derry and Strabane. 

These are two politicians who were elected on promises they'll rarely keep, attacking a person with a life time of medical expertise and for, no doubt, the sole purpose of trying to undermine her as a political opponent in Derry. 

I have very little in common with AontĂș, as far as Republicanism is concerned. But to see this happening is sickening when the real questions should be asked of those who should be pumping vast amounts of money into our health systems North and South, instead of ruining the economy and destroying jobs by lockdowns. 

I noticed that people in Australia have started to question their politicians in regards to what I have pointed out concerning lockdowns and the damage to their economy which are as a result of them. It is starting to scare the shit out of them. 

What scares the shit out of me is that people are becoming like sheep, only too happy, not only to finger point at those with differing opinions, whether right or wrong, but to try and destroy their careers into the bargain. 

Your Government Needs You to Stop Questioning.

Thomas Dixie Elliot is a Derry artist and a former H Block Blanketman.

Follow Dixie Elliot on Twitter @IsMise_Dixie

Your Government Needs You to Stop Questioning

Washington PostA high school teacher in a Paris suburb was decapitated Friday afternoon, French authorities said, in an attack that occurred after the teacher had allegedly shown caricatures of the prophet Muhammad to his students … 

... Police shot the suspect in a nearby town, killing him, said French police sources cited in news reports. 

France’s national anti-terror prosecutor immediately opened an investigation for “murder in connection with a terrorist enterprise” and “criminal terrorist association.” French President Emmanuel Macron later visited the crime scene, and Interior Minister Gerard Darmanin returned to Paris from an official visit to Morocco.

“They will not pass,” Macron said, speaking at the scene. “Obscurantism and the violence that goes with it will not win. They won’t divide us.”

The victim was identified as a high school history and geography teacher. Parents in the area had recently complained that a local teacher had shown students caricatures of the prophet Muhammad as part of a lesson on freedom of expression, France’s BFM television reported.

Continue reading @ Washington Post.

Teacher In Paris Suburb Decapitated

Christopher Owens ➨ Spoken word albums are ten a penny. 

And all too often, they’re not particularly interesting. Just badly recorded readings where the writer has clearly had “a few”, and then it becomes an exercise in reimagining great writing being read by the local barfly (unless you’re Charles Bukowski, in which case that is to be expected). 

Often, there are ones who understand how to work within the medium (William Burroughs, with his unmistakable voice and his choice of collaborators ranging from Sonic Youth through to Disposable Heroes of Hiphoprisy) but, by and large, they remain well intended exercises in self-indulgence.

Thankfully, Word Music is an exception.

Co-running Screamin’ Skull Press alongside Nicole Nesca, Tony Nesca has been writing and publishing for nearly 30 years. Working within the remits of prose and poetry, he has given us tales of people: some down on their luck, some fed up with their lot in life, some accepting of what is thrust upon them. The tone can veer from bar room wisdom, down to stream of consciousness outpouring, all with a rock n’roll flavouring.

The press blurb describes Word Music as being “Culled from his extensive collection of poems and stories…” the album allows Nesca to have the opportunity to read “…his work as it was meant to be represented—words as music—and plays electric guitar as accompaniment to his own work” as well as noting that listeners should “…make sure you have some booze and pot in you when you listen to it, it works really well that way.”

Beginning with the line “Death does not want you today”, and a midtempo blues riff that is wide enough to encompass introspection, ‘Last Stop to Saskatoon (Excerpt 1)’ throws the listener into a world that is brimming with possibilities, but also tinged with a sadness at the realisation that this world has also been the victim of gentrification.

Ostensibly about a night on the tiles, ‘The Windsor Hotel’ sees Nesca survey the surroundings while a Bo Diddley style riff (that is, dare I say, slinky) soundtracks the proceedings. It’s irresistible and atmospheric, something most records of this ilk fail at. Another notable track is the seven-minute epic ‘Bus Stop’, which is a deranged phone call with a driving guitar line that implies escape, possibilities and determination, while (ironically) never progressing.

Being the musician as well as the author means that Nesca is able to bridge the gap without having to rely on outsiders who may not be fully au fait with what he is trying to accomplish. While the stories and the delivery are tinged with an awareness and appreciation of American low-life as well as bar room fables, Nesca knows how to rock as well: the riffing on the album (blues influenced rock n roll) has the potential to blend into backroom noise if in the wrong hands, but it becomes just as essential as the poetry, so much so that it can actually be easy to overlook the writing, which features stream of consciousness style observations, commentary on the state of the world and depictions of humanity.

Combine this love of American music with Nesca’s world weary, gravelled delivery and it’s akin to Bukowski being backed by Billy Gibbons.

Word Music is proof that spoken word albums can be just as vital as books. 

Word Music can be listened to on Bandcamp 

⏩ Christopher Owens was a reviewer for Metal Ireland and finds time to study the history and inherent contradictions of Ireland. He is currently the TPQ Friday columnist. 

Word Music


A Morning Thought @ 863