Released on Monday 29th June, ‘Emergency Lullaby’ is the third part of the Hourglass Trilogy series of climate-themed singles released by folk rockers Merry Hell.
It will also provide the title for the next full Merry Hell album which will be called ‘Emergency Lullabies’ and is currently nearing completion.
Written by mandolin/bouzouki player Bob Kettle, he says of the song:
“The song ‘Emergency Lullaby’ developed from a melody I’d written on the piano. I was quite pleased with the tune – it had a soft, sleepy quality that reminded me of a lullaby – but, for a long time, I couldn’t come up with any appropriate words to go with it… In the meantime, I was to thinking about climate change and the devastating impact it will have on our lives and environment if it continues unchecked. I’d read about rising global sea-levels, fires in the arctic circle and deforestation in the Amazon. I was also dismayed by the nonchalant denials of the part played by human activity in this looming crisis – for example, Trump and Bolsonaro’s casual rejection of scientific consensus and willingness to sacrifice our planet’s wellbeing and the futures of generations to come for short-term political and financial gain.
“On the other hand, I’m painfully aware of just how little I’m doing, personally, to alleviate these dangers. I ride in cars and draw energy from a grid fed by fossil-fuels. I’ve been negligent with recycling and, because I’m lucky enough to live a first world lifestyle, I’m generally oblivious to the impacts my actions have in other parts of the world. I’m part of a great sleepwalk into destruction – so, in short, I’m no one to judge anybody else’s behaviour. I wanted to emphasise that, if the climate crisis has a human cause it also has a human solution. We can save our planet if we act immediately. Time is short; the longer the delay, the sooner the devastation. We need to hold on to hope because, if we lose it, we’re lost. I’m encouraged by the awareness and organisation shown by young people. If the older generation follow the young and support them in collective action, we have every chance of securing a cleaner, fairer world that can be sustained into the future.
“So, I coupled the soft, sleepy melody with lyrics about the climate crisis – to express the contradictory aspects of the problem: we need urgent action but we’re mired in apathy. That’s how I came up with the title ‘Emergency Lullaby’. I’d love to sing it in a spirit of understanding, hope and togetherness.”
Emergency Lullaby (Wasting Time)
The water is rising,
The Arctic’s ablaze,
The Amazon’s burning
But I spend my days
Feeding flood and fire in so many ways
Sitting here wasting my time.
There are clowns in high places
Trading on lies,
A cult of denial to cover our eyes
But if we give up hope then we give up our lives
Willingly wasting our time.
We will die of doubt
Time is running out…
The hourglass counts down
An avoidable fate:
The next generation pays for our mistakes.
Act now, act together and it’s not too late
Or we’re wasting the world and our time.
So, get down to Earth,
Let the young lead the old,
All hands to the ark!
Unfurl the rainbow!
Our life’s in our hands,
We’ll reap what we sow
The single is available to download and stream from all the usual digital platforms.
Released: 29th June 2020
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‘Leave It In The Ground’ – Merry Hell release climate call to action
DVD review: Merry Hell ‘A Year In The Life’
Album review: Merry Hell ‘Anthems To The Wind’
EP review: Merry Hell ‘Bury Me Naked’