Track Review: AJJ – “A Poem”

Posted: by The Editor

In “A Poem,” AJJ disembowels stan culture piece by piece. They assert that it’s naive to believe musicians make music purely to stoke glee and wholesomeness. Rather, songs are a form of currency; as in, people exchange their music for adoration and validation. It’s more transactional than personal and really, artists are often ravenous for “the power and the money and the other good stuff you’re bringing.”

Note the final two words of that excerpted line, as that’s where AJJ alludes to a call to action – for us as consumers to maybe be more hesitant to venerate a person you don’t know very well. It’d feel more comforting to chalk it up to “narcissistic musicians being narcissistic” and call it a day, but AJJ isn’t letting fans off the hook either. They hold rabid fan bases just as accountable as self-righteous musicians. Maybe, some artists would still delusionally place themselves on a pedestal even if they didn’t have much of a following. But it’s definitely easier derive an ego from something more palpable, like a swarm of admirers.

AJJ’s advice for music fans seems two-fold: first, pump the brakes, then, don’t feel guilty about doing so. They predict that if they’re depleted of wealth and clout, artists will “starve to death,” which seems sympathetic, but it’s swiftly followed with “and that’s alright,” and you can almost imagine them shrugging. 

Sonically, the track sounds like a mosaic; little bits and pieces solidifying to form a larger work that, even with a few bumps, feels intact. The pacing is languid, with spiky chords and phrases cushioned by pauses. Before two minutes elapse, the track comes to a close, and you’re left wondering: maybe, it wouldn’t be the worst idea to place a little less faith in someone I’ve never even hung out with before.


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Bineet Kaur/@HelloBineet