When a teenage environmental activist delivered a scathing speech about climate change at the United Nations last week she sparked significant reaction. From praise to criticism, from tweets to media analysis, there's no doubt about it, the world is talking about Greta. In fact, Greta Thunberg's U.N. speech even got a death metal remix.
The now viral YouTube video "Greta Thunberg sings Swedish Death Metal" was created by user John Mollusk, who also happens to be the drummer for the New York City-based metal band Suaka. It features aggressive blast beats, harsh shredding guitar chords, and, on top of it all, Mollusk, who Rolling Stone identified as John Meredith, performing Thunberg's speech word for word in the gravely growling vocals traditional to heavy metal. Since its YouTube debut, the video has garnered more than 3.2 million views and picked up a number of fans, including Thunberg herself.
"I have moved on from this climate thing," Thunberg joked late last week in a Tweet linking to talk of Mullosk's video. "From now on I will be doing death metal only!"
In an interview with Rolling Stone, Mollusk stressed he hadn't made the video to poke fun at the 16-year-old Swedish climate activist. Quite the opposite in fact. "When I saw her speech, I was very impressed by her passion and outrage," Rolling Stone reported he said. "And the words she chose just evoked the darkness of the metal music I love: Entombed, Gojira, At the Gates, Sepultura."
Mollusk is right, when speaking before world leaders at the United Nations' Climate Action Summit on Sept, 23, Thunberg didn't pander to her audience or dial down her tone of outrage. "You have stolen my dreams and my childhood with your empty words, And yet I'm one of the lucky ones," a transcript of her speech provided by NPR noted she said. "People are suffering. People are dying. Entire ecosystems are collapsing."
Thunberg went on to condemn world leaders for what she deemed to be their failure to adequately act on climate change. "We are in the beginning of a mass extinction, and all you can talk about is money and fairy tales of eternal economic growth," she said. "How dare you!"
She argued that policy makers around the world had failed to take meaningful action towards combatting climate change despite the fact that the science behind it has been "crystal clear" for decades. "ow dare you continue to look away and come here saying that you're doing enough, when the politics and solutions needed are still nowhere in sight," NPR's transcript showed she said. "You say you hear us and that you understand the urgency. But ... if you really understood the situation and still kept on failing to act, then you would be evil."
But this isn't the first time a musician has used Thunberg's words. Björk has aired messages from Thunberg during concerts, while The 1975 turned a monologue from her into the intro track to their album Notes on a Conditional Form, NBC News has reported. Most recently, Billboard has reported that the children's singer Raffi sampled parts of her U.N. speech for his song, "Young People Marching."
While Thunberg's words to the United Nations are impressive and impactful all on their own, there's something about hearing them growled over fevered heavy metal beats. Although, here's hoping that Thunberg doesn't plans to move on from climate advocacy for a long, long time.