WITHIN TEMPTATION's SHARON DEN ADEL: how 'religious parties trying to change laws' inspired lyrics for 'Don't Pray For Me'
WITHIN TEMPTATION‘s Sharon Den Adel spoke to Rock Sound about the lyrical inspiration for the band’s recent single “Don’t Pray For Me”.
She said: “I wrote an essay a year back about, for International Women’s Day, for one of the metal magazines here in the U.K. And they asked me, like, ‘Okay, you can talk about anything.’ So I just took a subject, and I chose abortion, actually. And I really dive into it, and it was more, like, ‘Okay, how does it really go about in different countries?’ And I saw laws changing in Poland, especially religious parties trying to change laws, so people can’t have sex education in schools anymore, but also they can’t have an abortion, even in the most worst cases. And it’s changing all over the world, also in America. I felt a little bit I had just been watching ‘The Handmaid’s Tale’. (Laughs) So just thinking how there are a lot of similarities about a lot of things, and also a lot of differences, of course. But it just made me wanna write about religion in the first place, because of the fact that people are always telling other people how to live. And abortion is just one of those things. But it’s a lot of things in a lot of countries that I go to, touring.”
She continued: “I feel like a lot of kids have a really hard time growing up, trying to be who they wanna be. And I think it starts really before they’re born, like what kind of circumstances do you get, the chances like anyone else you get, a loving family. Were you welcomed when you were born? Those kinds of things; it’s very important. People telling you what to be and who to be and what to believe, it just puts a real stamp on your life, I think, and it can really take the air out of life also. The song is about, don’t tell me what to believe, don’t tell me what to do, let everybody be free. That would be nice for people in the end, especially kids when they’re growing up and you give them the space to think for themselves.”
When “Don’t Pray For Me” was first released in July, Sharon stated about the track: “‘Don’t Pray For Me’ strives against forcing beliefs and fears onto others and bears witness to being acceptive of everyone’s own journey. It is an anthem about coming to terms with the fact that beliefs can be fluid, multiple or, frankly, different. The song is about allowing people to pursue their own destiny.”
In recent years, WITHIN TEMPTATION shifted their focus from releasing albums to releasing a series of singles, enabling the bandmembers to indulge themselves in their creative processes thus delivering freshly inspired music. The group has released “Entertain You”, “The Purge” and “Shed My Skin”, singles that have all thrilled their fanbase, had great critical reception in Europe, peaked in the Top 20 of the U.S. Billboard Mainstream Rock Indicator charts and topped the official German charts. In July, WITHIN TEMPTATION also released the official Jeb Hardwick-directed music video for “Don’t Pray For Me”. It was the fourth single of the band’s independent releases and will lead up to WITHIN TEMPTATION‘s next studio album.
WITHIN TEMPTATION‘s last album, “Resist”, was released in February 2019 through Spinefarm Records, the specialist hard rock label of Universal Music Group.