Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Persian Rock!?

EasyTV is back from a looooong sabbatical! Thanks to all who nagged me backed to it (in particular, I'm looking at you Pascalito!). So, what happened during that absence? All my old cool/lame/kitsch votes were lost to the Big Blogger Blackout of 2011. Also, we heard plenty of good new music: Jonathan Wilson, Lana Del Rey, Metronomy, Austra, and my little favorite obscure one: Glasser.

But today's post, as usual, will be about a pretty obscure topic: Rock in Iran! Sounds crazy, no? Obviously, most if not all of it is underground, illegal, banned, censored. The movie No One Knows About Persian Cats, presented at the 2009 Cannes Film Festival, tells that story very well. Did you know you can watch the whole movie online (with English subtitles)? Free dissemination of the movie is even encouraged by Bahman Ghobadi, the director!

The main protagonists of the above movie have an indie band called Take It Easy Hospital (don't ask...). And they sing in English!

Kiosk is a band that I believe started in Iran but is now established in Los Angeles, like pretty much every musician who leaves the country. It borders on the spoken word genre and it's sung in Persian, so it's probably more enjoyable for those who understand the lyrics! The video gives a pretty good snapshot of life in Tehran, so it's worth watching just for that:

Finally, how about some hip hop? Shahin Najafi raps about the difficulty of life in Iran, especially for its youth (again, obviously it's more interesting if you understand the lyrics) :

Lots more of backed up blog post ideas to follow soon, I promise!