In December 2013, DJ Snake and Lil Jon released “Turn Down for What”. On first listen, this three and a half minute piece is little more than a ridiculous song geared at moving the club crowd.
But that sells the song short. Lil Jon’s simple three line lyric is a call to the mass of young people to reject the entire dead notion of life, work, society, and culture. It’s existential nihilism at its core, and at its finest. What Sarte and Camus spent years trying to codify is now complete.
"Fire up your loud…"
Here, the listener is being encouraged to let their feelings of rage, angst, ennui, and meaningless out in the loudest way possible.
We are constantly inundated by the loud noises of our meaningless culture. Bosses scream for more productivity. Commercials scream to sell us useless products. Politicians scream useless rhetoric at us. “Media” outlets scream back and forth about the useless rhetoric. If there ever was any escape from noise, we long ago missed it.
But, like the piercing whistle that stop the mad crowd, our voices, our - if you will - “loud”, can be fired up and we can then be heard over the din.
"Another round of shots…"
Of course, the clearest rejection of society’s stranglehold on your life is to put yourself out of your own control. Oddly enough, a society so determined to drive us into a never-ending cycle of work, consume, die, also includes legal purchase of alcoholic beverages. So, if this is the loophole, we must take it.
One more round of shots and we will begin to understand. This world is meaningless, and if that is true, then the question is:
"Turn down for what?"
There is nothing to turn down for. Your job is an exercise in futility, a pointless activity designed to help you acquire money. Money, of course, is used to buy things - and the things that humans need should be free, and the things that are left over are the things we don’t need.
But, our culture insists that we do need them, so we work. While at work, we are not watching our children grow. We are not taking care of our homes. We are perpetuating a mythology that this is civilized culture. It isn’t. It will end as all things have.