At midnight tonight Pink Floyd will release their first newly created music since 1994’s The Division Bell when they release their new single and video for Hey Hey Rise Up with all proceeds going to Ukraine Humanitarian Relief.
The new single sees David Gilmour and Nick Mason joined by long time Pink Floyd bass player Guy Pratt and Nitin Sawhney on keyboards and features vocals from Andriy Khlyvnyuk of Ukrainian band Boombox.
The song, which was recorded last week in David Gilmour's barn, uses Khlyvnyuk's vocals from an Instagram post of him singing Ukrainian WWI protest song The Red Viburnum In The Meadow in an empty Sofiyskaya Square in Kyiv. The title of the Pink Floyd track is taken from the last line of the song which translates as ‘Hey Hey Rise up and rejoice’.
“We, like so many, have been feeling the fury and the frustration of this vile act of an independent, peaceful democratic country being invaded and having its people murdered by one of the world's major powers," says Gilmour, who has a Ukrainian daughter-in-law and grandchildren.
“In 2015, I played a show at Koko in London in support of the Belarus Free Theatre, whose members have been imprisoned. Pussy Riot and the Ukrainian band, Boombox, were also on the bill. They were supposed to do their own set, but their singer Andriy had visa problems, so the rest of the band backed me for my set - we played Wish You Were Here for Andriy that night.
"Recently I read that Andriy had left his American tour with Boombox, had gone back to Ukraine, and joined up with the Territorial Defense. Then I saw this incredible video on Instagram, where he stands in a square in Kyiv with this beautiful gold-domed church and sings in the silence of a city with no traffic or background noise because of the war. It was a powerful moment that made me want to put it to music.”
Gilmour wrote the music for the track and managed to speak with Andriy from his hospital bed in Kyiv where he was recovering from a mortar shrapnel injury. “I played him a little bit of the song down the phone line and he gave me his blessing. We both hope to do something together in person in the future.
“I hope it will receive wide support and publicity. We want to raise funds for humanitarian charities, and raise morale. We want express our support for Ukraine and in that way, show that most of the world thinks that it is totally wrong for a superpower to invade the independent democratic country that Ukraine has become.”
Hey Hey Rise Up will be availably digitally from midnight tonight and you will be able to watch the new video on the Prog website.
Get Hey Hey Rise Up. (from midnight)