- Bryon Harris
Flaming June - 'The Women's Battalion'
In the last few years, political protest songs and groups have been gaining new momentum. We have seen unification in The Women's March of 2017, a worldwide protest after the inauguration of President Donald Trump, and we have witnessed courage and strength through the #Metoo and #TimesUp movements. Along with these movements, groups like Emma’s Revolution in the U.S. are gaining new fans. The UK indie folk protest group, Flaming June, is also on the rise. Flaming June writes and performs material focused to women’s rights, social justice and political protest. They just released their 9th EP ‘The Firework Maker’s Daughter.’ Their single off the EP, “The Women’s Battalion” is a great way to participate in the music and the movement. The Women's Battalion was written to commemorate 100 years since women in the UK first won the vote in 1918 and to salute those still marching. The title of the song refers to a battalion signifying a large group of people taking up a common cause and in some cases willing to go to battle for it. Without a doubt, women worldwide know this calling and will relate to the song's music and message.
“The Women’s Battalion” starts with a jubilant declaration of spirit featuring Louise Eatock strumming acoustic guitar, Alex Herring playing passionate violin and Andy Fraser providing exciting hand percussion. The infectious high-energy vibe has an ancient-roots dance-like feel where you can almost picture women rallying in the streets; kudos to Andy for his top-notch drumming skills. Listeners will be swept away by the violin’s melodic lines that draw you in and keep the mix engaging. Louise enters singing, “A hundred years since the vote was won…and years before the battle begun. Hunger strikes and prison gates. The Tide is turning. England shakes.” Louise knows how to sing a story and hold your attention from beginning to end.
The arrangement of the song offers up a great instrumental solo section as well as an interesting bridge that paints the story. During the solo section, violinist Alex Herring offers layers of tasteful violin melodies that reveal her talent as a folk instrumentalist. The chorus of The Women’s Batallion is highly catchy and well-written. The bridge section is a call to action accentuated by marching drums and a thinning of the mix allowing for Louise to grab the spotlight. “Left Right. Left Right. With a fire in their hearts. Here they come, through thick and thin, never give in.”
Flaming June is no stranger to success. They have been on the BBC 6 Music airplay (Rumpelstiltskin), won a FATEA award (Nerves of Steel) and received praise from prestigious author of The Vagina Monologues – Eve Ensler (In Pursuit of HappinFolloess). They supported Big Country, Eliza Carthy, The Men They Couldn’t Hang and played Standon Calling, Ely Folk Festival amongst others. "The Woman’s Battalion” will surely keep their success marching forward like the music and the message they deliver.
Flaming June has a fire in their hearts that lights up “The Women’s Battalion” with soul and substance. Listener’s will surely join their musical march and feel the passion in their boots. There is a hunger for women’s protest music and Flaming June is offering a feast.
For more information on Flaming June, please visit their website.
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