so, i’m trying to think about why Streetlight Manifesto still speaks to me after 15 years

it’s wild because if you would have asked me 15 years ago i would have stupidly said blink-182, or maybe i would have said less than jake and reel big fish.

let’s take a look at SM over the years: first, there was Keasbey Nights. a rerelease of an album originally made with some people Toh Kay didn’t get along with.

while KN holds up, ultimately, very poorly with some songs that when examined from today’s world as incel threats, it establishes TK’s war-cry anthems that will guide the next decade of his work

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in Everything Goes Numb you hear SM speak out against the band he didn’t get along with, Catch 22, in more war-cries that sound like the soundtrack to a film noir. it's appropriate that it ends with a song titled after a Raymond Chandler story

there’s a real hopefulness in his die trying attitude, and EGN is about breaking free of hurtful people while touching on the subject of suicide

every year something new hits me in his lyrics. “silence, sirens” hits me hard these days, especially when people close to me say "how've you been" and i don't say “i’ve been fine” -- i speak honestly to silence. sirens.

in their third album, Somewhere In The Between, you really feel SM try to grow up from a third wave ska band to something bigger, taking on deeper subjects of religion and morality

this album hit me at a time that i was coming to the conclusion that i would need to escape from the grasp of the church. i can still belt out all of Mephisto’s Cafe from memory

cut to such a long time later, i’m now on my own and trying to survive from toxic startup to toxic companies: we get The Hands That Thieve

due to TK’s long fought war against Victory (a record label) a lot of the plans for this album and it’s sibling solo album, The Hand That Thieves, had to meet the big sleep

but as the years go by it hits me how these two albums are the culmination of the works of SM and TK: referencing lyrics and themes from the past albums

being betrayed by people siding with the enemy, suicide, religion, accepting the unknown, and all in that signature war-cry anthem style they have been perfecting over the decade

now 17 years later, i don’t know if TK ever thought he’d win the war against Victory, but i know he will keep dreaming of winning, rearranging the rigged puzzle pieces, so that he can stand up and do what it takes

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