Shite Iranian Metal Band Arrested

Posted: February 13, 2016 in Current Affairs, Islamism, Religion, terrorism


#ConfessTheBand #Blasphemy #Islamism

Iranian Metal Band ‘Confess’ Arrested for Blasphemy.

confess iranian metalband

Being a bit of a Paul Simon, Gilbert O’Sullivan, Clive Dunn sort of a chap, I’ve often joked about how purveyors of Heavy Metal, Thrash Metal, Punk Thrash Metal, Goat Metal – and the many other divisions of the genre – should be arrested, tortured and put to death. I don’t really mean it. It’s a joke. A little harsh perhaps, but a joke.

My many friends who listen to and play this kind of


crap – in bedrooms and in bands – like to think of themselves as subversive. It’s something I’ve always chuckled at as an extension – possibly life-long – of teenage rebellion. Okay, you’ve got a job, kids and a mortgage now, so the Goth/Metal look just had to go, but hey, you’ve still got that air-guitar, right!

Now imagine living in a society where my harsh joke actually happens – arrest, torture, murder – at the hands of the state for simply expressing oneself through shit music. For writing bad lyrics – simple words – that seemingly threaten the powers that be.

How can this be?

Totalitarian states will always seek to control both free speech and freedom of association. It is in their nature to attack these twin pillars of liberty. Yet it is never sufficient to silence and isolate the intellectuals, the pamphleteers, the political opponents: to impose the will of the state it has to control popular culture, too, for it is freedom of expression through popular culture that will transform and encapsulate a complaint, a message, an ideology or even a revolution into a word, an image, a phrase, a lyric – a meme.

Strange Fruit, Solidarity, Che, Free Nelson Mandela, Pride, ‘V’, Nic Ut’s shot of Kim Phuc, naked and burning with napalm, Grandad by Clive Dunn.

Controlling the extremities of popular culture is essential to controlling the middle ground. With Lemmy in a prison cell, it forces Adele to be at least cautious with lyrics the state may deem offensive, off-message, or taboo. It was part and parcel of the targeting in the Sunni Islamist attacks on Parisians in January and November of 2015 – free speech, freedom of association, popular culture.

Here we see it expressed in the Shia Islamism of Iran with the arrest of two members of the metal band ‘Confess‘ [link to full story below]. It reminds us that the extremities of popular culture are a litmus test as to the condition of liberty in any given state. It needs to be cherished and protected – even if the music is shite.

My many friends who listen to and play this kind of shit – in bedrooms and in bands – like to think of themselves as subversive – it’s because they are.

Anvil Springstien.

Source: Article/Track/Interview @ Loudwire Magazine.

Note: Big thanks to the many emails pointing to the misspelling of the word ‘Shiite‘ in the title of this piece. In the UK, Shite is a form of shit (pronounced shyte).


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