Legendary Aussie rock outfit Midnight Oil will premiere their first new music since 2003 as part of the National Indigenous Music Awards (NIMAs) this Saturday, 8th August.
The in-studio performance will see the band joined by Kaleena Briggs, Bunna Lawrie and Dan Sultan to perform the new track – titled ‘Gadigal Land’, referring to the traditional owners of so-called Sydney, running from the CBD plus areas from South Head through to the inner west.
The track is described as a “provocative recount of what happened” in this area, and in Australia more broadly, since colonisation began in 1788. In addition to contributions by Briggs, Lawrie and Sultan, it also includes a lyrical section written and delivered by Gadigal poet Joel Davison.
‘Gadigal Land’ marks the first new music from the Peter Garrett-fronted group since standalone 2003 single ‘No Man’s Land’. Produced by longtime producer Warne Livesey, it’s taken from the band’s forthcoming ‘Makarrata Project’ – a mini-album of collaborations with Indigenous artists. The band will donate its share of proceeds to organisations that seek to elevate the Uluru Statement from the Heart.
“We had over 20 songs we wanted to record and eight of them shared a strong focus on the issue of indigenous reconciliation, so we invited some of our First Nations friends to collaborate with us in various ways on each of these eight tracks,” commented the band when announcing the album back in February.
“We’ve always been happy to lend our voice to those who call for racial justice, but it really feels like we’ve reached a tipping point. We urge the federal government to heed the messages in the Uluru Statement From The Heart and act accordingly,” added the band in a new statement today. “Hopefully this song and The Makaratta Project mini-album we’ve created alongside our First Nations friends can help shine a bit more light on the urgent need for genuine reconciliation in this country and in many other places too.”
This year’s NIMAs will be broadcast on NITV, Double J, YouTube and social media from 7pm AEST on Friday, 8th August.