Interview: Does It Offend You Yeah?


Written by Media Watch
02 Friday 02nd November 2007

MW: Why do bands insist on using obscene lyrics when these words only serve to assault your senses?

DIOYY?: Fuck knows? Songs are sometimes about obscene things which merit obscene lyrics. Swearing has been around since we started to talk, it's never going to disappear. To express emotion people often resort to swearing. It's an easy thing to do when they want to portray what they're feeling.

Do you believe that the constant repetition of swear words in lyrics will normalize behavior and encourage the listener to be aggressive? There was a song by a well-known black rock star which encouraged the listener to “smack my bitch up."

Smack My Bitch Up is personally one of my favorite Prodigy tracks. I remember there was a bit of a debate about this in the 90s when the song was released. I haven't got the figures but I doubt that incidences of "bitch smacking" rose due to people listening to the song.

The actual SMBU line was sampled from an Ultramagnetic MCs track and there wasn't any uproar when that was released.
Seriously though, the argument for censorship is a difficult one. There are well known racist and homophobic bands out there which call for violence towards their enemies, but I think most kids see through their lyrics and just laugh at how stupid they sound.

If someone was predisposed to violent tendencies then it might have some effect on them, but then again it's not the musician’s fault that the listener acts on them. No one seems to complain about books with "obscene content" in them, so why is all the blame put on music and computer games?

Now we're living in an age of freedom of information on the internet it all seems rather silly to target musicians.

Do you think rock bands are being driven to be more weird and bizarre by record companies eager to beat any competition and to make profits?

Not really. For every bizarre band, you get another squeaky clean Westlife type band. Different things appeal to different people.

Do you consider yourselves as rock artists to be role models for young people?

Its a lot of fun to go all round the world playing music and getting paid for it. I can see why kids would look up to that definitely.

Are you happy with the way the media portray rock stars as empty, directionless individuals addicted to drink or drugs?

At the moment it seems to be the thing to focus on the Amy Winehouses' and Pete Dohertys' just because of their drug use. However George Bush has used cocaine and Winston Churchill was an alcoholic, and I'm sure they've both used obscene language, but these facts were never dwelled upon because they are politicians and not musicians.

It always seems to me that the people calling for censorship always have the most to hide, just look at the Catholic Church and the pedophilia scandals.

In fact I would say the biggest cause of violence is religious extremism. Just look at the causes of war over history.

Find out what DIOYY are up to over at

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