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Near the end of this eight-song EP, Todd Snider steps up to the microphone and tells his listeners that while his work may have become more "opinionated" lately, "I did not do this to change your mind about anything; I did this to ease my own mind about everything." And Snider isn't shy about getting his feelings off his chest on Peace Queer, which for the most part plays as a final kiss-off to eight years of George W. Bush and his various wars, both foreign and domestic. While the villain of the piece is never mentioned by name, the tale of the school bully on "Is This Thing Working?" and its sister song, "Is This Thing On?," is a clear enough metaphor, and the cover of John Fogerty's "Fortunate Son" makes the old antiwar chestnut sound like it was written last week, with the Man from Crawford as its protagonist. In many respects, Peace Queer (which takes its title from a song by the Fugs) isn't that far removed from Snider's earlier work -- the sly humor, the loose but emphatic performances, and Snider's playfully soulful vocals will sound familiar to anyone who has been following his work. And "Stuck on the Corner" and "Dividing the Estate" give Snider a chance to air his feelings about a number of other forms of national malaise in the new millennium (the former is summed up nicely by the chorus "Making money out of paper/Making paper out of trees/We're making so much money we can hardly breathe"). Why Snider waited so long to share his feelings about the state of the nation is anyone's guess (perhaps as a show of support to the loyal opposition in an election year?), but Peace Queer is a short and bittersweet gem, a rant that's funny enough to make the venom sting all the more and a cry of protest with joy and compassion in its heart.