SHORTLISTED FOR THE 2017 MERCURY MUSIC PRIZE
Let Them Eat Chaos, Kate Tempest's new long poem written for live performance and heard on the album release of the same name, is both a powerful sermon and a moving play for voices. Seven neighbours inhabit the same London street, but are all unknown to each other. The clock freezes in the small hours, and, one by one, we see directly into their lives: lives that are damaged, disenfranchised, lonely, broken, addicted, and all, apparently, without hope. Then a great storm breaks over London, and brings them out into the night to face each other - and their last chance to connect. Tempest argues that our alienation from one another has bred a terrible indifference to our own fate, but she counters this with a plea to challenge the forces of greed which have conspired to divide us, and mend the broken home of our own planet while we still have time. Let Them Eat Chaos is a cri de coeur and a call to action, and, both on the page and in Tempest's electric performance, one of the most powerful poetic statements of the year.
Kate Tempest was born in London in 1985. Her work includes the plays Wasted, Glasshouse and Hopelessly Devoted; the poetry collections Everything Speaks in its Own Way and Hold Your Own; the albums Everybody Down, Balance and Let Them Eat Chaos; the long poems Brand New Ancients and Let Them Eat Chaos; and her debut novel, The Bricks that Built the Houses. She was nominated for the Mercury Music Prize for her debut album, Everybody Down, and received the Ted Hughes Award and a Herald Angel Award for Brand New Ancients. Kate was also named a Next Generation poet in 2014.