Joey Tempest often explores hope as a key theme in his music. Tempest feels that human beings, in general, are best characterized by their ability to hope.
In fact, it is perhaps hope, and more generally the ability to engage in future-oriented thinking, that separates us from other animals. He explained how through his touring and world travel, he saw hope as a universal human feature. “What is the basic human instinct? Survival instinct … but there is also hope instinct. And that is something that is connected to what people perceive as God, or what people perceive as light,” Tempest said. “It’s the human quality of wanting to see something better down the line. Because if we didn’t have that, I don’t think we would move forward as a human race. There’s a need to see around the corner. I think that drives us and makes us happy as well. They say that hope is the last thing that leaves people who are destitute.
“Hope stays until the very end for most of us.”
From Tempest’s perspective, one of the key ways that hope is understood and expressed is through the ability to pick up and go wherever. In particular, Europe has explored the concept of moving on, to a new place or a new time, as a mechanism by which hope is understood and manifests.
“It is something that is embedded in the human race. We have nomads, we have gypsies. And we originated, perhaps, from Africa and moved to all corners of the world, moving all the time,” Tempest described. “And just a simple thing like, today I feel like getting out of my car and driving, that feels good. We’re moving, we’re on our way.
“It’s embedded in our souls to keep moving.”
Tempest reflected on how this concept has animated him in making music and touring for over thirty years. “It’s just a feeling. When we’re on tour, we’re on our way again, to the next town,” he said. “I think it’s hope; it feels like you’re going towards something. Moving has to do with hope. Leaving has to do with hope as well.
“There’s going to be something good out there.”
Tempest explained how the theme of moving on, and the hope associated with leaving Earth, was a key theme of Europe’s most famous and enduring song, “THE FINAL COUNTDOWN”.
“Lyrically, it was inspired by David Bowie Space Oddity…I was fascinated with outer space and leaving Earth and finding a new home. And that we were on our way to something new,” Tempest said.
Now, 30 years later, on their new album “WALK THE EARTH“, Tempest and Europe are once again taking on the theme of hope. But while “The Final Countdown” focused more on leaving Earth to find hope, Walk the Earth focuses more on exploring what the Earth has to offer that can be new and exciting. Tempest explains that this theme feels particularly important in light of the apparent strife and tension that many people are experiencing socially and politically at this time.
“Walk the Earth is about coming back to Earth. The idea is, who thinks for the human race? Because everyone seems to think for themselves these days; the world is pulling in all kinds of directions politically and socially. Everyone wants to sing their own song,” he explained. “But we were thinking, hang on—somebody’s going to have to sing for Earth as well…if Earth was in any danger from any outside force in the universe, we would come together.
“When push comes to shove I think everybody would come together.”
But whether people heed Tempest’s call to unite or not, whether they rally to his cry to move on in search of something better, hope will always be at the core of his music. “Hope is the key,” Tempest said.
“I think that’s why I’m still doing this.”
Source: Psychology Today