Steely Dan: Sign In Stranger
There are two parts to the concept of independence. The obvious one is freedom or liberation, and it’s always a positive. But you also have to be independent from something, and that’s where the darkness creeps in. Leave it to Steely Dan to explore that side of things eloquently. In Sign In Stranger, the independence is from a person’s past. Mizar Five is a haven for criminals and lowlifes who seek a fresh start, and sometimes a new identity. The song does not suggest that any of them will change their ways, only that they will be free of their records. So here is independence with a sense of menace.