‘The Crow’, the second single from Irish folk-metal pioneers Cruachan upcoming ninth album ‘The Living and the Dead’, is a wonderful blend of the band’s hardest metal riffs and hauntingly beautiful folk and traditional instruments. The song was written to commemorate all those who died in Ireland’s Mother and Baby Homes. Featuring backing vocals from actor Jon Campling (Harry Potter, Final Fantasy), who makes his recording debut on this track.

Mother and baby homes were run by religious orders, starting in the 1920s, and funded by the Irish government. 9000 children died at 14 mother and baby homes over several decades. The institutions, where unmarried women and girls were sent to give birth in secrecy and were pressured to give their children up for adoption, were also responsible for unethical vaccine trials and traumatic emotional abuse.

For decades, the stories of these places and the atrocities carried out in them, were largely unspoken or brushed under the carpet — despite calls from the mothers who became virtual prisoners within their walls and children who spent their earliest years there, later sharing stories of neglect and abuse.

But as Ireland made strides to reckon with the uglier aspects of its conservative Catholic roots, deeply intertwined with the foundation of the state, there have been recent moments when the scale of the systemic abuses have been thrust into the light.

The biggest controversy, and the story that brought this to the worlds attention was the ‘Tuam Baby Controversy’ where hundreds of infant skeletons were discovered in a septic tank near a home in Tuam, County Galway.

In the song, the dead children are not forgotten. They are innocent souls, they fell on a battlefield they never asked to be in. The Crow is The Morrigan, she comes to claim these fallen children and save them from the horrors perpetrated by the church.

Backing Vocals – Kim Dylla, Jon Campling
Tin Whistle – Geoffrey Dell’Aria
Video by Olga Kuzmenko of Record Replay Productions www.recordreplayproductions.com