Orchestra of Cardboard – The Black Flag (2020)

‘The Black Flag’ is the first single off the upcoming album The Antidote by Orchestra of Cardboard. Both the album and single touch on topics from freedom to democracy and personal responsibility. Using a soft folk-rock sound, the collaboration between the band and Jolie Holland have you thinking about the world, resistance and resilience.

The band draws on the different experiences of each member of the collective. Created by Dan Edelstyn, the collective includes Nick Graham-Smith and Malcom McClaren among others. Sending their music to each other from across the globe, they have moulded their sound into an imperfect but tremendous encapsulation of the globe.



‘The Black Flag’ has a soothing opening full of easy guitars and shuffling beats. There are a number of layers to the melody from the opening beats to horns bubbling through the lower levels. The almost laid-back vibe of the melody gently draws you along the soundscape. The interjection of the horns at times drive the messaging of the lyrics harder. The solid foundation created by the music offers a solid footing for you to contemplate the lyrics.

Over the melody are Edelstyn’s vocals which carry this darkness to them. There is a sad and sombre tone to his performance as he lays out the issues facing the world. However, through the lyrics, there is a sense of hope that something can be done if we all get together and resist. The flow of the lyrics has a poetic vibe that is steeped in emotion.

Orchestra of Cardboard is calling for us to come together against the troubles of the world in ‘The Black Flag’. The sad and sombre melody melds with the vocal performance to create a track that makes you stop and think. While thinking, you are pushed to take action as a collective.

Find out more about Orchestra of Cardboard on their website, Facebook, Instagram and Spotify.

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