Anthem For A Lost Cause

Album: Rewind The Film (2013)
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Songfacts®:

  • Vocalist James Dean Bradfield wrote the lyrics to this Rewind The Film track. Bassist Nicky Wire told The Quietus it was the band "trying to write an old fashioned standard."
  • The song was originally titled "Composition Rights." Wire told The Quietus: "I said, 'That's a bit fu--ing John Cale isn't it? Who's going to know what a fu--ing Composition Right is?' [He said], it's rites as in 'rites of death'. So I said, 'Well nothing sums us up better than 'Anthems for Lost Causes' does it?'"
  • Wire told The Quietus that the song's brass arrangements "took ages." He added: "We were really trying to get the feel of Sam Cooke or something, for 'As Holy As The Soil' as well. We were trying to imagine someone like Amy Winehouse singing it."
  • The song's music video was directed by Kieran Evans, who also helmed the clips for "Show Me The Wonder" and "Rewind The Film." Set in the Rhondda Valley, the visual depicts the women affected by the 1984-85 miners' strike which was a hard and bitter time. "The video for 'Anthem for a Lost Cause' is heroic, emotional and defiant," said Nicky Wire. "A timely reminder of the power of support women gave their communities. And it looks beautiful too."

    Evans added: "After 'Show Me The Wonder', we started talking about extending the story into the '80s and about bringing in something more political. It was the era we all grew up in and the backdrop for what was really a modern British civil war. The heroic battle that wives of miners and the women's support groups waged against an oppressive state hell bent on destroying their communities should be an inspiration to all."

    He continued: "They represented the very essence of true socialist principles; collectivising and organising themselves not only to protest against the huge injustice they suffered at the hands of Thatcher but also to feed, clothe and support fellow their fellow workers and their families."

    "In some small way," Evans concluded, "we wanted to bring a sense of this history to the promo and shine a light on the heroic women who took on Thatcher and her thugs. We should never forget their struggle."

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