Track of the Day: Midnight Oil “Gadigal Land” (2020)

Midnight Oil

Midnight Oil are back with their first new song in close to twenty years. “Gadigal Land” sees the veteran rockers team up with vocalists Kaleena Briggs, Bunna Lawrie, Dan Sultan and Gadigal poet Joel Davison. The fiery slice of rock is part of The Makarrata Project, a themed mini-album of collaborations with Indigenous artists, which is set for release in late October. 

“Gadigal Land” takes its name from Sydney’s traditional owners, many of whom continue to live in the city. The track is a provocative recounting of what happened on Gadigal lands, and elsewhere in Australia since 1788. A special ‘in studio’ video of the song premiered during the National Indigenous Music Awards at the weekend. 

It’s a powerful and passionate track, one that demands not only attention from the listener, but hopefully action too. It, along with the mini-album, are the latest in a long line of reconciliation initiatives that Midnight Oil have supported. But, perhaps none have felt quite so timely, with the Black Lives Matter movement bringing with it a renewed focus on local issues, including Aboriginal deaths in custody and constitutional recognition. 

The band have committed to donate their share of any proceeds from the album to organisations which seek to elevate The Uluru Statement from the Heart in particular and Indigenous reconciliation more broadly. You can find out more about The Uluru Statement from the Heart HERE.

“Gadigal Land” is out now. You can find Midnight Oil on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram

Header Photo by Awais Butt

Simon Clark

Books Editor. An admirer of songs and reader of books. Simon has a PhD in English and Comparative Literature. All errant apostrophes are his own.

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