"To be truly radical is to make hope possible, rather than despair convincing." - Raymond Williams

Dark Optimism – The Album

by Shaun Chamberlin on February 18th, 2017

Because why not?

I have a passion for tracking down that elusive rarity – eco-songs that don’t suck! And thanks to several Dark Optimism readers, my collection’s growing, from a wide range of genres.

Back in 2011, I published the first ‘Dark Optimism album’, but sadly it was lost due to my using an external MP3 player which later disappeared. Hit play below for the 2017 edition, with a few more recent favourites added to the mix:


Honourable mentions also to these pieces from Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds, Akala and RapNews, each brilliant in their own way, but not quite hitting the spot for this collection. Enjoy!

And any more songs (or other creative responses) that you’d like to share greatly welcomed in the comments below.

  1.  Dalvin says:
    19 February, 2017 at 6:54 pm

    Shaun,
    Take a listen to “(nothing but) flowers” by The Talking heads.
    It may fit the criteria for your album.
    Best,
    d.

  2.  Shaun Chamberlin says:
    19 February, 2017 at 7:27 pm

    Ah, thanks Dalvin – yes, I know that one well! V interesting song 🙂

  3.  William says:
    7 August, 2017 at 7:09 pm

    One that comes immediately to mind is Alice Phoebe Lou – She
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NPH9j0qVM3A

  4.  Bill Everett says:
    20 January, 2018 at 7:34 pm

    If there is no object, I will nominate possibilities for album 2:

    Phil Ochs – No More Songs https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2o1Mno5yjqo

    Ruth Mundy – Adani https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2CqE37lmsvs

    Ruth Mundy – Love in the Time of Coral Reefs https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZTFFOr_G6ZM

  5.  Shaun Chamberlin says:
    23 January, 2018 at 2:21 pm

    Many thanks Bill. Both artists were new to me, and I’m very glad to make their acquaintance.

    “Love in the Time of Coral Reefs” brought me to tears, so that’s likely to make the cut!

  6.  Vasa Endicott says:
    1 February, 2018 at 3:42 am

    You all may also enjoy Kid Beyond’s I Shall Be Free, though not directly eco-related, more on the idea of “waging peace.” https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H4MFE9bfDYg

  7.  Shaun Chamberlin says:
    2 February, 2018 at 4:36 pm

    Thanks Vasa – it’s all interconnected alright. Nice track!

  8.  Matt says:
    4 March, 2018 at 6:10 am

    Hey mate. My band’s whole album fits the theme. Vanishing Point by The General Assembly. Enjoy! https://thegeneralassembly.bandcamp.com/album/vanishing-point

  9.  Shaun Chamberlin says:
    4 March, 2018 at 6:57 pm

    Cheers Matt, will have a listen. Hope you found something stimulating in my collection to date.

Leave a comment

RSS feed for comments on this post. TrackBack URL