Everything about this song reminds me of a James Bond theme, starting with the singer, Tako Gachechiladze, who’s a ringer for a young Shirley Bassey and like Shirley Bassey wears a sparkly full-length dress while she belts out this enormous ballad as though she’s fighting her own orchestra to be heard. (The orchestra doesn’t stand a chance.)
“Keep the Faith” is not a very good Bond theme, mind. It’s the sort of song you’d expect to accompany a Pierce Brosnan Bond film – the one you guess last on internet quizzes – the kind with a title that seems made of Bondy words just thrown in the air and landing in no particular order. Die Another Tomorrow Never Cares.
On a big screen behind Tako is a screen with tiny segments of troubling global news items turned into a baffling and depressing montage, demonstrating the urgency of keeping the “faith”. Included among the headlines is “Russian invades Georgia” – a troubling reference which may not make it to the final performance.
And so, in the context of all this broohaha, we are enjoined to “keep the faith”. We’re not told what “the faith” is, of course, and it’s tempting to point out that there are certain versions of keeping certain versions of faith which really are part of the problem rather than the solution. The “faithful” (of various kinds) are very much at the heart of the broohaha rather than resisting it.
I suppose “Preserve a Spirit of Sceptical Inquiry” is a terrible song title.
Assuming that Georgia is not promulgating any one particular “faith” to be kept and is instead merely promoting “faith” in general (in a vague, not very well thought out Prince Charlesy sort of a way), the inference must be that all the bombing and ethnic cleansing and persecution in the world is somehow the result of of a kind of inauthenticity, a faith that lacks formal integrity or which undoes itself in various logical ways.
Is it the case that any attitude of faith, any discipline of belief, is actually incompatible with the excesses so often attributed to the zeal of the faithful? This is a fascinating philosophical theme, that I’m not sure a three minute Bond theme is adequately equipped to tackle.
Still, Georgia’s offering is undoubtedly a bigger and bolder initiative than Greece’s:
Frankly, I prefer Finland: