Retribution Blues

Album: One Bad Son (2012)

Songfacts®:

  • One Bad Son is a Canadian Rock band who signed to Chad Kroeger's 604 Records in 2010. Their debut album, produced by Danny Craig of the band Default, was released in 2012. The entire band contributes to their songwriting, but lead singer Shane Volk writes the lyrics. This song has a particularly colorful story. In our interview with Shane Volk, he explained: "I very rarely blatantly write about an experience, especially with girls. And I've moved away a little bit from relationship songs. But with that song, that's very much a literal transcript of this event that happened to me years ago where I was a kid dating a girl in high school, going through that whole first love kind of thing. She was beautiful and she just used me. She was manipulative because she was beautiful and she knew she could.

    One day I woke up and it just went off in my head like a light bulb. Like, you know what, this is brutal. I'm bending to this girl's will because she's gorgeous. And it was like, from this point on, I will never do this again. This is brutal.

    So we broke up. And as a lot of artists do, I have a fairly self destructive streak in me at times. And I was like, Nope, it's not finished. I'm like, No one treats me like this. So in a very juvenile way, I got back together with her with the intention the entire time to make her life a living hell. So we dated again, we got back together, and I spent an entire summer just completely terrorizing this girl. Just hitting on women in front of her, making dates and making big plans and not showing up, or showing up completely s--t faced drunk.

    And the funny thing is that I learned out of that experience: as soon as I turned on her, she never paid more attention to me in my life. It was just terrible. Horrible social experiment for me to do. I was like 19 or 20 at the time, and I would never do that to a person again. It was very, very juvenile. Very immature. But at the time, really liberating, also. Just gaining a bunch of self confidence to be like, you know what, you don't need anybody to ever steamroll over you just because she's beautiful.

    So 'Retribution Blues' is a vivid take of me telling a girl to go f--k herself in a really horrible, horrible way. (Laughing) So that one is a little piece of history. For the record, that girl doesn't know who it's about. So I'll keep that under wraps."

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