This is a song which I co-wrote the mid 90s by "Giles Goatboy" (pseudnym of the front man of the grapes) and arranged by myself (as bassist I adopted the pseudnym "Rene Uafasach", following a tradition started by the Virgin Prunes). We recorded it in 1996 with the full Grapes line up "Mars Bonfire" on Guitar and "Wayne Hogfeed" on drums.
Oliver Cromwell is notoriously known figure in Irish history and despite the title of the song, there is no attempt at retelling what we already know. The song, with the historical character figure is basically a metaphor and is about the bad elements in Irish society today, the institutions who have abused their power, the clanishness of the crime gangs, how we ourselves cannot "leave each other alone", a mentality of "milking the system", the post colonial mindset, one that has not been shaken off nearly 100 years after independence. The song was also written in the context of the troubles , before the cease fire. It was basically a wake up call to say "HEY what are we doing here? What are we doing to ourselves? What type of society do we want to create in this state? on this Island?"
The last verse reachest the peak of cynicism in making references to the "land of saints and scholars" in the same tone as "snobs" and "bombers", being only motivated by self interest. "Who are these people in a position of power of today" the song asks, who are in a position of power to make changes but will do SFA (sweet fanny adams) about it.