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War Pigs Versus Blowin' In The Wind

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When we listen to a song, how often do we really listen to it? Usually when a song is played it is nothing more than a background, but to actually listen to a song, deconstruct the lyrics and fully understand what the author was trying to convey does not happen very often. However; when (or if) we do, we would realize that what the author was trying to convey could be done in very different ways. A prime example of this is in "War Pigs" by Black Sabbath and "Blowin' in the Wind" by Bob Dylan, where they both try to tell us (generally) the same thing, but they go about it in very different ways.

The very first thing that struck me when I was listening to "War Pigs" was that it felt like quite a dark song. It started with sirens, and I do not know many people that would think of "happy" sirens. Usually they are associated with chaos, pain, confusion, suffering etc. The list goes on. Right away this sets a very grim setting, but when Mr. Osborne starts howling, you know that he is not giving the Queen a complement on her new hat. He then starts to compare the generals of an army to satan-worshipping witches. The song is chock full of such metaphors, one would think that it could be set on Halloween with all the references to dark creatures such as sorcerers and witches.

Now on the contrary, when I listened to "Blowin' in the Wind" it seemed like a very mellow song. It seemed like Mr. Dylan left quite a bit to the comprehension of the reader. He used a lot of poetic devices, and because of it he made the song flow very well. Unlike Mr. Osborne's song which is full of daemonic references and quite shallow and to the point lyrics, "Blowin' in the Wind" is full of metaphors and hidden meanings. In my opinion, one of the best examples of this is at the start of the second verse where Mr. Dylan says "How many times must a man look up Before he can see the sky?" It obviously



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