What I feel that the record is chiefly about is that we’ve collectively forgot how to conduct our disagreements in a civil fashion. The whole point of the game of politics is to try to find a way that we can conduct our disagreements in a civil fashion.
I think that’s one of the main reasons I haven’t been able to connect with Frank’s recent album. The disagreements are over putting kids in cages, women’s rights, trans-rights, unchecked police killing, massive corruption and handouts to the richest people and corporations, a grotesque sexual predator man-baby in the White House, and countless other atrocities that occur on a daily basis. I’m angry about it and I don’t find any value in “civil disagreements” with those that want to deny people their human rights.
It’s almost difficult to dislike an album as inherently positive as Be More Kind. In today’s draining political and cultural climates, Frank Turner not only believes that change is possible, but that it begins within each of us. In fact, if there’s an overarching criticism to be made about the album, it’s that these songs tend to veer into the brand of vague optimism that’s better employed lining the inside of Hallmark cards. But sometimes, even those messages can be refreshing to hear, and considering the relatively low energy on display, Turner’s heart, technical ability, and good intentions carry Be More Kind a considerable distance.
I always try and have a different mental approach to each record that I make. The last album that we did was sonically and stylistically a bit of a retrenchment, a bit of an attempt to restate first principles, and I liked it, I’m really proud of that record. We cut the record in nine days with a live band and it’s quite stripped back and lean, but now it’s absolutely different. And it’s my seventh album, I feel like I’ve earned the right to expand my sonic boundaries and possibly a duty to as well. There are people in this world who want me to remake ‘Love Ire & Song’ every two and a half years and they are going to be disappointed, but at the same time I’m not taking Love Ire & Song’ away from them.