N.B. this Old news post was originally published at CeruleanSounds.com/news

'OURSS.SOCIAL' - music for a website

October 31, 2022

This Cerulean Sounds double is brought to you by The World Wide Web:

Listen ad-free & download on Bandcamp 🔗 https://Ceru.Li/sten-ourssdotsocial

The scary part: SOCIAL


The founder of LinkedIn said it himself: "Social networks do best when they tap into one of the seven deadly sins... LinkedIn is greed."

I heard that quoted by HumaneTech’s Tristan Harris on #ThaGodsHonestTruth. Rapper Charlamagne does a great job at explaining to a general audience how this means social-media doesn't just bring out the worst in people, it's designed to do so.

To reach even more people with this idea, let's make some rap-music that can be shared - yes including on socials, hopefully by some as a 'signoff' post for a delete/detox as I've been doing on IG for the first 7 months of the year - to convey this idea clearly. A 7-verse song structure is already there. Charlamagne Tha God didn't take it on musically, so this Halloween MC Beastly steps up to the mic..

Cave Cave

The center of 'The Seven Deadly Sins and the Four Last Things', attributed to Hieronymus Bosch

The seven deadly sins - early Christians' categorisation of human vice - have inspired so many great artworks over the centuries: I probably have David Fincher's masterful 90s chiller SE7EN to thank for being scared witless at ThorpePark FrightNights as a teenage millenial, though Chaucer's Canterbury Tales & Dante's Divine Comedy probably had the same effect on folks in the middle of the last millenium. It's thought that one - a follower of, if not the man himself - Hieronymous Bosch painted the brilliant The Seven Deadly Sins.. bang on the year 1500.

I got to see Bosch's work in-person (on an earlier Spanish holiday), and whilst the psychedelic aspects of his triptych Garden of Earthly Delights captivated me then, I think The Seven Deadly Sins.. is more original for its realism: it's rare to find classical paintings depicting the mundanity of lazing by the fire, or checking yourself out in your bedroom mirror. Private spaces where the Catholic Church could only promote virtuous behaviour with the threat of the Latin slogan:

Cave cave d[omi]n[u]s videt ("Beware, Beware, The Lord Sees")

SOC7AL Videt

My track holds up a mirror to today's millenials - secular and carefree - basking in the glow of YouTube or tweaking selfies. Because I want them to see themselves tweaking selfies & seeking clout.

Because the social-media companies see. And their (US & Chinese) government enablers see (cf Edward Snowden 2014 for US, I don't even think the CCP bother pretending otherwise).

I want you to notice every time:

1) you humblebrag about your company's greenwashing on LinkedIn

2) you swipe-down on TikTok knowing it's gonna show you more teens dancing

3) you let YT autoplay its 7th shock-jock video

4) you use Snap for disappearing-messages instead of Signal

5) you leave an event as soon as you've bagged the likeable IG pic

6) you get angry about a Tweet for more than 140 seconds

7) you post on FB to cause FOMO

I thought attaching each social to a sin would land criticisms harder than just the usual 'hey guys, we're becoming addicted to crappy 6" screens' drum I've been banging since starting the FirstWeek FlipPhone challenge during my Master's on Smartphone Dependence.

Making 'SOCIAL'

'SOCIAL' artwork, drawn by hip-hop album-artist & painter Yoo Rabt | 🔗 https://Ceru.Li/sten-social to stream

So I banged a real-drum instead. Well via Logic, a Japanese Taiko drums for the relentless 101BPM. Inspired by the Creatures Chant in the Scooby Doo (which I rewatched in L.A. with Izzy McNugget who knows social-media inside-out), I pitch-shifted vocals for a beastly drone, and chanted the Latin over it:

"Cave Cave Social Videt"

The verses are very dense - probably my wittiest yet - but what each has in common is simply working the name of the deadly sin and the social brand into it.

The upbeat part: OURSS.


You might wonder why the Beast-side comes first. Not just because the MC Beastly track will bang harder, but because we have to understand the problem before we can look to solutions.

"OURSS." artwork / logo 🔗 https://Ceru.Li/sten-ourss to stream

This song looks back a couple of decades. To the 90s. It is a love-letter to the open-web technology of RSS (Really Simple Syndication) which allows people to freely and directly subscribe to chronological feeds of each other's online content. No need for those 7 guys ^

Like the Beast-side "SOCIAL", this A-side track was self-produced - with a bigger focus on acoustic sounds, like my go-to pianos - and mixed by Stan Van Dijk.

Sonic influences included: "Crocodile Rock" by Elton John (who everyone who's seen me on the Beeb recently knows I love) for the verse and "Sweet Child of Mine" by Guns 'n' Roses for the chorus. While lyrically, I see this as an optimistic comeback to Frontalot's acoustic "I Hate Your Blog".

Since MC Frontalot & MC Lars coined the term 'nerdcore', folks assume it must be rap-music. But here's an alternative-rock production that definitely qualifies!


This release is a double: my #DividedSelfie versions of singles (think of it as a musical diptych). Together the two sides spell out a domain-name OURSS.SOCIAL: a website I'm also launching today, on the auspicious Halloween, which itself is something of a Beast-side precursor to the All Saints Day celebration!

An important change with my music is coming in 2023, which you'll be hearing about in my New Years Eve release. Overall it'll mean bringing my work with technology and entertainment more in harmony. So it totally made sense to release my manifesto for my new tech project musically in the form of this nerdcore release.

Just like with The Divided Selfie LP, I kept the same BPM across the pairs and blended from major to minor with a quote, this time an epigraph from Lewis Mumford - like RD Laing an underrated mid-century social philosopher. The deep 'monster-voice' in the transition was inspired by the monologue in Michael Jackson's Halloween classic "Thriller".

So please, visit the website OURSS.SOCIAL to hear the tracks freely on the web (via Bandcamp) & find out more about my project.

If you are already blogging (a News page on a website-builder like this counts!), you can claim your page, and if you're new to owning your content, it might inspire you to find out how you can.

Laurence 'Cerulean' Warner