SOUNDGARDEN/ex-AUDIOSLAVE singer Chris Cornell's video for his new song "The Keeper" can be seen below. The clip was helmed by Isaac Rentz (CAGE THE ELEPHANT, MANCHESTER ORCHESTRA) and serves as the lead single from the soundtrack to the movie "Machine Gun Preacher".
Based on a true story, "Machine Gun Preacher" is directed by Marc Forster ("Finding Neverland", "Monster's Ball") and stars Gerard Butler ("300", "The Phantom Of The Opera") as Sam Childers, a former drug-dealing criminal who finds faith leading him on a path to East Africa. Shocked by the mayhem in Sudan, Childers becomes a crusader for hundreds of refugee children fleeing death and enslavement.
In a recent interview with ARTISTdirect, Cornell stated about "The Keeper", "I think the song really sticks with the idea of imagining that Sam Childers is singing it. What is he singing? It's a sort of testimonial to the kids he puts his life on the line for. In that testimonial, the singer is really saying, 'I'm not Moses. I'm not this grandiose savior to be worshipped. I'm just a guy who has faults, and I know it as much as anybody.' However, this person who does have faults and who isn't Moses is going to be here until he dies doing what he does for others. That was my way of being able to really get into the song without saying that I lived it because I haven't."
When asked if he was reading anything while writing "The Keeper", Cornell said, "I wasn't when I was writing 'The Keeper'. For 'The Keeper', I'd read the script and focused on the web site. There was a photo gallery on the 'Angels Of East Africa' web site that I focused on just because I wanted to get a sense of the environment. That, combined with the story, is where the ideas and musical feel came from because the photos are very moving. Some are difficult to see. There are some photos where it looks like the children are suffering. However, most of the pictures in the photo gallery show Sam with a smile surrounded by a bunch of kids who look very happy. They look tended to, cared for, and loved. In the photos, the children are together playing. You'll notice the atmosphere which is unusual. There are pictures of a couple kids standing next to a crashed plane that people have ripped parts off of. There's a photo of kids near a derailed train where the cars have been left and no one's ever done anything. It's an unusual world, but the theme was you did see children who appeared loved and cared for and therefore were happy. They're acting like you'd see my children in a photograph, smiling and being kids. That really influenced the writing of the individual song more than anything."
Cornell said in the ARTISTdirect interview that the music SOUNDGARDEN has written for its upcoming album is "different than anything" the group has done before. Asked how the new SOUNDGARDEN material compared to "The Keeper", the singer replied, "Well, no matter what, SOUNDGARDEN is always going to be heavier. However, I also think musically the new SOUNDGARDEN stuff is different than anything we've ever done . . . every time we've made a record it wasn't really that easy to compare it to the previous one other than that we're the same band. I think there may be some moments that are sort of sonically quieter and more stripped-down. On the whole, it's a rock record. That's what we do."