Do They Know It's Christmas? - Band Aid 30
Single Track from Various Artists - Release Year: 2014
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Review of "Do They Know It's Christmas? - Band Aid 30"
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Band Aid 30 is a charity song that was recorded by a collection of music artists under the organisation of Bob Geldof and Midge Ure in November 2014 in order to raise funds to tackle the Ebola crisis in Africa. The track is a remake of the original 1984 Band Aid song which was originally recorded to raise awareness of the poverty in Ethiopia. The song therefore has some slight lyric changes to reflect the fact that the track is now relating to the Ebola virus outbreak in West Africa.I recently got a copy of the physical CD single which actually contains three other tracks which are the 1984, the 1989 and the 2004 versions of the Band aid singles. The Tracey Emin designed CD sleeve has a simple design of a black background with a message of hope written in neon lights across the front. “Faith, Love, Trust, You, Me And The World…” appears along with the title of the track which is officially ‘Band Aid 30 - Do They Know It’s Christmas? (2014)’.
On the inner sleeve the song’s new lyrics are printed which is helpful. However there has been some murmurings about the lyric change with some sources saying that the new lyrics are insulting to the communities in West Africa suffering from Ebola where the majority of people are actually Muslims who don’t celebrate Christmas. There is also concern that the song portrays a false image West Africa and also promotes erroneous ideas regarding the Ebola virus in terms of how it is responded to and the chances of recovery. I personally don’t like the new lyrics as I feel they don’t particularly make sense in terms of how they fit in with the lyrics of the rest of the song, in particular the rousing “Feed The World” anthem at the end of the track, although this also has been altered with some of the lines changing to “Free The World” and “Heal The World”. There is a sense that certain lines are incongruent and have been slotted into the structure of the original song. The new lyrics certainly do not have the power, intelligence and relevance of the original song although I’m not sure it really matters what anyone thinks at the end of the day when the song was meant as a means of raising money for a good cause!The artists involved in the project include some massive singer/songwriters and musicians, famous around the globe for their musical successes. They include the ubiquitous ‘One Direction’ whose presence is obviously a huge attraction for many younger music fans. The song also features several artists who have such unique voices that you will know them as soon as you hear them. Ellie Goulding, for instance, has a beautiful fragile tone that resonates in the middle of the track. The soulful Sam Smith also appears as does Ed Sheeran and Emeli Sande. I have always believed that the contributors to each Band Aid song are the new voices of the music generation so I was a bit surprised to see an older artist like Sinead O’ Conner taking a central role in the vocals.
Although I hate to criticise what is a good cause I do feel that in terms of musical quality this lacks beauty and power. In fact I think that all of the Band Aid tracks since 1984 have failed to arrange the vocalists to best highlight their talents and also to showcase certain lyrics with certain vocal styles. Band Aid 30 has moments where it sounds like a karaoke track with very few of the artists truly engaging with what the lyrics are actually saying. There are even occasions where some of the artists sing with glee and glory, seemingly caught up in the excitement of the event rather than expressing an understanding or conveying the meaning or emotion of the lyrics. The instrumentals are also lacking in atmosphere and intensity with a basic rhythmic structure that has no involvement other than to time-keep.I’m sure that due to the participation of some of the artists this track will be very appealing and well liked by many people, probably the younger generation of music fans. However, I personally do not think the lyric change is a positive and I do not feel the arrangement is the best it could have been.
I do like that the physical CD contains these other Band Aid tracks though as it’s great to hear how the track has changed over the years and it’s also interesting to note how many distinctive voices you can recognise!Regardless of the quality of the new Band Aid 30 song I think that perhaps it’s a track worth buying or downloading since it is an excellent way of donating to a good cause.
Product Information : Do They Know It's Christmas? - Band Aid 30
Manufacturer's product descriptionSingle Track from Various Artists - Release Year: 2014
Artist(s): Various Artists
Release Year: 2014
Sub Genre: Brit Pop
Listed on Ciao since: 16/11/2014