Last August — as they marched alongside Belarusians against the autocratic rule of strongman president Alexander Lukashenko — Naviband wrote “Девочка в белом” (Girl in White). An ode to all the girls, women and mothers who were turning out to rallies week after week — often in the red and white colours of the banned flag of Belarus — it became a protest anthem for so many who dream of greater freedom and basic rights in their country.

Now, exactly a year on from that, the Eurovision 2017 stars have returned with the much-anticipated English-language version. Released by Crownstone Records and reworked alongside the British artist Ryan O’Reilly, it conveys the raw and profound emotions of the original, with added clarity for a foreign audience.

NAVIBAND (feat. Ryan O’Reilly) – “Girl in White”

The thoughtful lyrics convey the beauty and strength of protestors, as symbolised by the titular girl in white, but also the great weight and burden they carry by resisting.

“Standing in a darkened world, swallowing my precious words, tears blind my sight,” Ksienija sings. “You ask, ‘Why is love so clear, only through pain and fear?'”

Ultimately, though, she calls for resolve to persevere: “Tear down the walls and show no fear, our might is flawless, hope is near, Proud girl in white, daring to dream and ready to fight.”

The digital only single is now available on Spotify, iTunes and other streaming and download sites worldwide.

Here’s how the group describe the song in an official statement.

“Naviband, of Belarus, announces the release of their long anticipated English version of their acclaimed protest song. ‘Girl In White’ can be heard not only as a protest to the brutality rising in the world, but as a beautiful expression of longing, hope, and steadfastness. To bring this song to a wider audience, songwriter and author, Ryan O’reilly worked with the band on the English lyrics.”

“A year ago, massive protests took place across Belarus only to be brutally crushed by the dictatorial regime. This sparked a thunderous reaction from  artists across the country.”

“In solidarity with all in resistance to the oppressive Lukaschenko  government,  Naviband bears witness to the  women’s protests, when girls and women of different ages came out in white with flowers in their hands in response to the violence of the authorities. The repression continues, but the people are not giving up.”

“Naviband has gained world attention since representing Belarus in the 2017 Eurovision Song Contest. Not particularity political, they are known for beautiful and upbeat music  that reaches into the hearts of their fans. Now, the band and O’Reilly have forged a strong and haunting ballad.”

Girl In White (English lyrics) — Naviband feat. Ryan O’Reilly

Standing in a darkened world swallowing my precious words
tears blind my sight
You ask Why is love so clear
only through pain and fear
I’m walking in white
You emit a heavenly glow
That puts them all to shame but I know pain cannot be solved with flowers How many will be betrayed
How many tears on the way
’til the dawn breaks
after the dark hours
Until the dawn breaks
after the dark hours
Tear down the walls and show no fear our might is flawless hope is near Proud girl in white
daring to dream and ready to fight
No more lies we will believe
We wear are hearts upon our sleeves Now we are sure
The blood that they draw
Won’t hurt anymore
It won’t hurt
can’t hurt anymore
When we wake we start again
When we meet remember when
We held hands and sang our songs sound pulsating in our minds
I know it’s hard, don’t shut your eyes Together we’re so strong
You emit a heavenly glow
That puts them all to shame but I know pain cannot be solved with flowers How many will be betrayed
How many tears on the way
Until the dawn breaks
after the dark hours
Until the dawn breaks
after the dark hours
Tear down the walls and show no fear our might is flawless hope is near Proud girl in white
daring to dream and ready to fight
No more lies we will believe
We wear are hearts upon our sleeves Now we are sure
The blood that they draw
Won’t hurt anymore
it won’t hurt anymore
it won’t hurt us anymore
It won’t hurt
can’t hurt anymore

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Anita
Anita
1 month ago

moving!

Sot
Sot
1 month ago

Does anyone know where they live now? I suppose it’s not Belarus