The words to this song come from 'The Tomb', a story written by the American writer Howard Phillips Lovecraft (1890 -- 1937). The Tomb tells the story of a young man, Jervis Dudley, and his increasing obsession with the past. Spending many nights in the doorway of an old tomb on his family's land, Jervis begins to have increasingly vivid visions of life in a different era, where as a young buck, drinking, blaspheming and revelling in a Hellfire club type scenario. Becoming increasingly taken by the world of his visions, he begins to take on the antiquated demeanour and dialect of its denizens. He describes how 'gay blasphemy poured in torrents form my lips and in shocking sallies I heeded no law of God or nature', and indeed, this song would appear to be one of those 'shocking sallies'.
Thematically, the song is similar to De Brevitate Vitae ('On the Shortness of Life'), better known as Gaudeamus Igitur ('So Let Us Rejoice'). A commercium song, it dates back to the early 18th century, and is commonly sung at graduation ceremonies in universities throughout Europe.
The song is set to the air of the Coleraine Jig, which is a traditional Irish tune.
Punk music enthusiasts may also recognise the lyrics from the strange chant at the end of 'Dream City' by Lovecraft fanatics Rudimentary Peni, on their album 'Cacophony'
Recorded by Danny Diamond in the Irish Traditional Music Archive in August 2013.
Mixed by James Eager.
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