In "Superman," Tom MacDonald steps away from his usual hip-hop style, delivering a powerful singer-songwriter piece that addresses the harsh realities of war and its impact on individuals. Tom is known for his outspoken stance against cancel culture and advocacy for traditional American values, and his foray into a more acoustic and emotive sound demonstrates his versatility as an artist.
The opening lines immediately set a somber tone as MacDonald sings about witnessing the world's turmoil through the lens of his phone. The imagery of people running for their lives, crying to God, and the presence of blood and bombs creates a vivid and haunting picture of the horrors of war. This departure from his typical genre showcases MacDonald's ability to evoke deep emotions through both his lyrics and musical arrangement.
The chorus, with its repeated plea of "Where is Superman?" serves as a poignant cry for a hero in a time of chaos and despair. Tom questions the blurred lines between good and bad, highlighting the indifference of those in power as long as there are resources like oil at stake. The use of the term "oil sands" adds a layer of social commentary, suggesting that conflicts are often driven by economic interests rather than a genuine concern for humanity.
The verses further explore the personal toll of war, with Tom expressing a heartfelt desire for dreams to come true and acknowledging the human cost of conflict. The lines "I'll be home soon, walked off in the night, goodbye" resonate with the sacrifices made by those who serve, emphasizing the emotional weight carried by soldiers and their loved ones.
The bridge introduces a sense of inevitability, suggesting that a time will come when the harsh realities of war won't be confined to screens but will be visible to all through windows. The abrupt "Boom!" creates a chilling effect, emphasizing the sudden and destructive nature of conflict.
"Superman" is not merely a departure in musical style for Tom MacDonald but also a departure in thematic content. It's a brave exploration of the emotional toll of war, a departure from his usual confrontational approach to societal issues. The song's acoustic arrangement, coupled with MacDonald's sincere vocals, adds a layer of vulnerability that enhances the impact of the message.
At the end of the music video, it does appear that "Superman" is flying. So while the song is mostly an idealistic appeal for a superhero, the end confirms that maybe there is more to the character of "Superman" than just being a fictional character.