I have loved this song since the first time I heard it over ten years ago. It is perfect. It is well written, well composed, well arranged, well fucking performed and the message is killer.
Then standing back he made it plain,
that the nightmare would never, ever rise again
But the fear and the fire and the guns remain
Dude, it wasn’t roaring, it was weeping. Josh Groban has done his to best co-opt and mutilate this legendary, anthemic excoriation of white idiocracy during the anti-arpatheid struggle in mid-1980s South Africa. Interesting that his versions almost always exclude the plaintive strains from Nkosi Sikelel’ iAfrica , which I guess did more than anything else to get this song banned from the airwaves in the first place. The nationalist anthem was banned at the time, so including a sample was an act of cast-iron-cojones valour.
Big tune, this one. And sadly topical. Too bad Bright Blue didn’t really do much else (save that really weak Madiba track) but with this brave tune, they put down a standard that’s been hard to match since.
Although Mango Groove’s “Another Country” got quite close.