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Jack River Returns with Soaring Protest Anthem ‘We Are the Youth’

Jack River has returned with her first new music since last year’s Stranger Heart EP, the shimmery, anthemic single ‘We Are the Youth’.

Informed by River’s (aka Holly Rankin) long-held passion for climate and environmental justice, the singer-songwriter said she was moved to write the song after performing to 80,000 young people at a School Strike 4 Climate Rally and realising she “didn’t have an anthem… to express how we felt about the times.”

“At the same time as there is widespread climate injustice, there is ongoing abuse of power on many fronts in our society: against First Nations people, in the halls of parliament, and in workplaces everywhere. People are tired of it,” Rankin explains. “We want change and action, and we are ready to work to build our way out of a broken system.”

‘We Are the Youth’ is, subsequently, a little more direct in tone than much of Rankin’s earlier work as Jack River. “In December there were children on the streets / Screaming for the simple right to fucking live and breathe,” Rankin sings, recalling the climate rallies born out of urgency and government inaction.

It’s all foregrounded by a lush, soaring instrumental produced by Matt Corby with additional production by Adam Hyde of Peking Duk. The song also arrives alongside a music video directed by Nyikina Warrwa and Wangkumara Barkindji filmmaker Marlikka Perdrisat and Rankin herself.

Assembled partially from archival footage it features many young activists including Jean Hinchcliffe, Grace Tame, Brittany Higgins, Amanda Gorman, Hindou Oumarou Ibrahim and Autumn Peltier. Watch that below:

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