What’s This Playlist All About? The CIA believes these nine songs can be so damaging to the psyche that they have the power to break down any prisoner. This music was played repeatedly at maximum volume at detention centers around the world, including Guantanamo Bay, Iraq, and Afghanistan. This mix has been floating around the web for several years now, but it’s sifted back up into our consciousness after Harper’s magazine published an excerpt from the new book The Penguin Book of Hell, which “takes us through three thousand years of eternal damnation,” and was subsequently retweeted by a proud Marilyn Manson.
What You Get: A blend of sexually fueled pop from old Disney cohorts Britney and Xtina, mainstream Satanic rock from Marilyn Manson and Drowning Pool, death metal groans from Deicide, and a loveable children’s gem from Barney and Friends. One of Nine Inch Nails’ most rattling soul dissectors, “Somewhat Damaged,” also got plenty of play (Trent Reznor has already voiced his disgust at its disgraceful use). Oh, and don’t forget those terrifying kittens from The Meow Mix commercial.
Biggest Surprise: We understand how Queen’s “We Are the Champions” could really be cruel in such a hellish situation, but how could they ruin Freddie for us? How?!
Think You Could Take It? The biggest hazard of writing about music is getting to hear some truly awful stuff, so these selections seem rather tame and unimaginative to us. Then again, that Meow Mix could really be our downfall.