Monty Python Records Unofficial World Cup Anthem
Whether you love or loathe them, when it comes to producing World Cup songs we’re about as useless as we are at scoring penalties. The past has yield a few gems, but for every ‘World in Motion’ (New Order’s classic) or ‘Three Lions’ (Baddiel and Skinner’s rousing but humorously pessimistic Euro 1996 anthem, re-released for the 98 World Cup) we have, amongst countless other fails, Ant & Dec’s ridiculous ‘We’re on the Ball’.
With Gary Barlow’s ‘Greatest Day’ (a reworking of the Take That hit, penned officially for the 2014 World Cup) having been dropped without further mention by the FA – possibly as a result of Barlow’s recent tax evasion controversy – it seems a more unexpected candidate has stepped up where the official song has, yet again, failed.
The Monty Python comedy troupe has re-released the Eric Idle-penned song ‘Always Look on the Bright Side of Life’ (from its 1979 film, Life of Brian) with an extra verse continuing the original song’s nonchalant attitude to death – or, in this case, crashing out of Brazil’s summer tournament! The new verse pokes some pessimistic fun at any hope of an England victory, with Eric Idle singing: “When you're in The World Cup / And all your hopes are up/ And everybody wants their team to win / Then they go and let you down / And come slinking back to town/ It's time for this daft song to begin.”
Hoping it can become the unofficial anthem for England fans throughout Rio 2014, the comedy legends have released the song – variations of which were already popular on football terraces across the UK – to coincide with the June 30th re-release of their musical album Monty Python Sings as well as a collection of all their albums entitled ‘Monty Python’s Total Rubbish: The Complete Collection’.
The Pythons – John Cleese, Eric Idle, Terry Jones, Michael Palin, and Terry Gilliam – will reconvene for ten shows, alongside the only female Flying Circus performer, Carol Cleveland, at London’s O2 Arena next month, acting out various classic sketches. Michael Palin and Terry Gilliam have both stated that money is a key incentive surrounding the reunion and the new releases - but while that may be so, at least ‘Always Look on the Bright Side of Life’ will give us something to smile about should the Three Lions fail to bring football home from Rio this summer.
Published: 09 June 2014