Sabaton’s “Defence Of Moscow” Lyrics Meaning
Readers familiar with Sabaton know that they are a historical band. And what we mean by that is their songs often read like condensed, emotionally-charged history lessons. Also their lyrical content tends to focus on war, quite often the greatest battles of all-time, the two World Wars.
And even more precisely, since most of the action during those events transpired in Europe and the band itself is from Sweden, the Old Continent also tends to be the settings of their stories.
Defence of Moscow
And what the “Defence of Moscow” actually refers to is an event known as the Battle of Moscow, which lasted from late 1941 to early 1942. Simply put, this was when the Soviet Union successfully defended their capitol from the invading Nazi forces. And it was in fact a major victory, as up until that point the Germans were pretty much having their way in the USSR.
And it is in fact with that thought in mind that the song commences, by noting that the “Wehrmacht”, aka Nazi military, had “overrun Russia [by] 1941”.
On this song, Sabaton, despite being Swiss, take on the role of Russians from that era. And their disposition is like even though they are up against a formidable, dominating army, still they will ‘stand their ground’. And that is simply because they are unwilling to tolerate an occupying force wreaking havoc in their homeland.
So being prompted by Soviet ruler Joseph “Stalin” (1878-1953) and the leader of the Russian military at the time, “Marshal [Georgy] Zhukov” (1896-1974), the people stand strong. In addition to standing strong, they are disciplined and pretty much prepared to die in the defense of “the motherland”, which in this case is epitomized by Moscow.
And, as noted above, said initiative did in fact prove to be successful. And from the way the event is depicted within the song, citizens from the farthest reaches of the Russian Empire responded, “daughters and… sons” alike, ready to give their lives to the cause.
All in All
So you can understand why this moment in history, the “defence of Moscow”, is one which instills pride in the Russian people. Believe it or not, over a million individuals are estimated to have died defending the titular city.
And for all intents and purposes, it can be said that the German military was superior to that of Russia’s back then. But the people rallied all of their resources, hope and even blood in defending their country. And it wasn’t as if doing so permanently scared the Nazis off. But at least for the first time since World War II broke out, the Russians had proven that they can in fact defend their homeland, which relatively speaking is just a stone’s throw away from the former Nazi base of Germany.
Facts about “Defence of Moscow”
This song is actually a cover. And who originally came out with it, understandably, is a Russian rock band that goes by the name of Radio Tapok. As such on top of the five current members of Sabaton being listed as co-writers of “Defence of Moscow”, Radio Tapok, as a singular entity, is also.
Meanwhile the credited producer of the track is Nuclear Blast Records, which is the same label that put this song out on 7 May 2021.
Sabaton released this track on the above date in recognition of V-Day, which in Russia is held on 9 May annually. And as far as said holiday is concerned, it is used to commemorate the Nazi surrender during World War II. That event officially transpired on 8 May 1945 (though 9 May in Moscow’s time zone).
Along those same lines Sabaton’s rendition of “Defence of Moscow” is available on a limited edition vinyl which is red in color. The red color is presumably as a shoutout to the Red Army. FYI, the Russian military was referred to as the “Red Army” back in the early 20th century.
As noted earlier, Sabaton is a band from Sweden. They have been around since 1999 and, also as pointed out prior, tend to drop songs based on past military events. For instance, the track they dropped prior to this one, “The Royal Guard” (2021), served as a salute to an exclusive branch of the Swedish military which operates under that same. And the last album they came out with, 2019’s “The Great War”, is in fact based on World War I.
Joakim Brodén (lead vocalist) and Pär Sundström (bassist) have been down with Sabaton since day one. Meanwhile Chris Rörland (guitarist), Hannes Van Dahl (drummer) and Tommy Johansson (guitarist) are more recent additions, having respectively joined in 2012, 2014 and 2016.