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Chris Cornell Premieres New Song, "The Promise"

(Image credit: Jason Kempin/Getty Images)

Soundgarden's Chris Cornell has premiered a new song, “The Promise.” You can check out the song—which happens to be the title track of a new film—below.

The film, which stars Oscar Isaac, Christian Bale and Charlotte Le Bon, is set during last days of the Ottoman Empire and, more specifically, a horrible event known as the Armenian Genocide.

"If it's something you or your family members went through, it's something you're faced with confronting on a daily basis," Cornell said. "The film and plot are your band mates, and the song has to be true to the story and the characters in it. 'The Promise', to me, is mainly about paying homage to those we lost in the Armenian Genocide, but it's also about shining a light on more recent atrocities.

"The same methods used in the Armenian genocide were used to carry out crimes against humanity in Bosnia, Darfur, Rwanda and right now in Syria on multiple fronts, contributing to a massive global refugee crisis. Unfortunately, the words 'never again' seem like just words when we recall these mass executions of the 20th century, as well as renewed racism and prejudice around the world. Even in the U.S., the warning signs—isolating groups based on race and religion—are evident.

"We really need to tell these stories and keep telling them in as many different ways as we can. As humans, we have a tremendous capacity to trudge ahead in our lives and not look at the difficult and challenging moments… but I think it's important. Educating ourselves on the past is the best way to understand the present and avoid future atrocities by understanding and intervening. We must educate and stand as one to combat this fear and violence, and as citizens of the world, work to protect each other's human rights."

Proceeds from the song will assist the International Rescue Committee, which aids in humanitarian crises around the world by providing healthcare, education, safety and more to people who have been overcome by disaster.

The Promise opens in theaters April 21. You can watch a trailer below.

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Damian Fanelli
Damian Fanelli

Damian is Editor-in-Chief of Guitar World magazine. In past lives, he was GW’s managing editor and online managing editor. He's written liner notes for major-label releases, including Stevie Ray Vaughan's 'The Complete Epic Recordings Collection' (Sony Legacy) and has interviewed everyone from Yngwie Malmsteen to Kevin Bacon (with a few memorable Eric Clapton chats thrown into the mix). Damian, a former member of Brooklyn's The Gas House Gorillas (opens in new tab), was the sole guitarist in Mister Neutron (opens in new tab), a trio that toured the U.S. and released three albums (opens in new tab). He now plays in two NYC-area bands.