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Gods of Wasteland:
A Manual for Families and Youth

Atila Sinke Guimarães

Book review of Gods of Wasteland, by Michael J. Matt
(St. Paul: The Remnant Press, 2000), 193 pp.

Gods of Wasteland book cover
Gods of Wasteland will fill an important vacuum that exists for the healthy formation of the Catholic family.

Since the ‘60s, rock and roll, without license, has penetrated the mentalities of the youth. Influencing its very psychology, the rock has caused temperamental and emotional disturbances proportionate to the cacophony and turmoil of the music.

The Catholic family was invaded without realizing it, and a new element, which is not constrained by the official moral teaching, has come to act on the tendencies of the generation of our children. In face of this, how can a good Catholic mother educate her child today in the best moral laws if her daughter is an adept of rock music and admires its groups and stars? Without some serious defense, little by little, tendentially, the moral principles will be diluted and the daughter will come to be a liberal in customs. The defense that was lacking is in this invaluable new book.

With Gods of Wasteland, Michael J. Matt brings to the Catholic family the much-needed antidote. Well acquainted with the topic because he himself had been an admirer of this music, the author offers the reader a complete tour d’horizon on rock and roll. Firmly basing his analysis on Catholic principles, he gives us the definition of rock, its history, and its principal stars; he describes rock’s seductive character and “cultural” influence in an intelligent and engaging exposition of the facts. After the description, he establishes the rock connections: with drugs, sex, violence, Communism, and Satanism. By the time you finish reading this exposé, you have before you an ominous and impressive panorama drawn from uncontestable proofs.

In an accessible conversation style, Michael Matt develops his topic without ever losing touch with the reader. Gods of Wasteland is a work that parents should read to know the best way to converse with their children about rock music in order to warn them of its dangerous influence. More than a book, God of Wasteland is a true manual.

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