“Sometimes, I wanna just lose service from the whole world,” lamented Atlanta’s Kodie Shane to The Fader with regard to her new song “Losing Service.” In 2016, IRL vs. URL is over, and it’s not that one or the other won — rather, everyone seems to have forgotten about the battle. The distinction now feels meaningless, as if both sides shrugged and said “if you can’t beat ‘em….”
That being said, nowadays losing service from the internet means losing service from the world. See how the fabric of reality itself is all pixelated and blurred in the video? Not a smashed iphone, tablet, or laptop in sight. Material connectivity is all but forgotten: Kodie Shane points us not toward disillusionment with electronics, but rather disillusionment itself. “Computers are material objects engineered and built to sustain the illusion of immateriality,” Matthew G. Kirschenbaum reminds us, and in 2016, the illusion is strong.
My generation was born into the Internet Age, which is like being born into darkness. There’s no escape. Even a song about wanting to unplug is validated by filming a music video in nature then sharing it online. But I digress — take “Losing Service” as a deep reflection on screentime or a wonderful 2016 banger or both, I sincerely hope Kodie Shane doesn’t unplug completely and stop sharing her wonderful music.