1979 | Rock
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“Did you see the frightened ones? -- Did you hear the falling bombs? -- Did you ever wonder why we had to run for shelter when the. -- Promise of a brave new world unfurled beneath a clear blue."
- Roger Waters son Harry does the childs voice at the begining of the song.
- In the film version, this segment is animated by Gerald Scarfe
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THE HOT TAKES
The bloody cost of conquest. There's a small change between the first and second times through the chorus, which I adore: "They've come to take all your rights," and then "They've come to grant you your rights." This is, strikingly reminiscent of how all tyranny operates. It steals away your rights and then, if it deigns to allow you use of them again, it will be at a cost.
Pink Floyd is one of my favorite bands, and I love this song. So many wars started by the power elite with their own reasons and incentives, promise the utopian brave new world. Things would be so good if we could just rid ourselves of those people! Somehow it never works out for the common man, but the powerful certainly gain more power. All the regular person is left with is that lingering pain and to try to clean up the mess.
This song points out how disconnected from the machinations of war the public often is. I've been terrified of overhead planes my entire life possibly due to this song and its haunting vision. I've always had my finger on the idea that my country does evil things that make people want to bring evil to us. Thankfully America has had to grapple with this reality very little but the threat is always there. This particular song is a direct response to emotional scars roger had from the aftermath of the blitz. One moment its blue sky, the next it's hell on earth when moments before it seemed like the future could only get brighter for everyone. Sadly power lusts for more of itself and war allows it to demand it. Peasantry be damned.