Sunday, October 28, 2007

Iraqi metal under threat of death

A few weeks ago, stalwart Florida femme rap group Yo Majesty was doing a great show in Gotham. Near the end, they told the crowd that a band who was in contact with them was in trouble with their home country and their lives were in danger. To help them out, they were selling merchandise to raise money for them. They couldn't remember the band's name and someone in the crowd asked if it was a rap group. "No," one of the MCs replied "but they're still in music business and we gotta support them 'cause we're all brothers and sisters and in this together." I was moved by that gesture and wondered who they were talking about but found out soon enough.

While heavy metal makes for a convenient scapegoat for all that's wrong with teenagers today (as if they'd all be fine if we banned metal), it's an even more serious issue in a Muslim nation where metal is seen as a corrupt and unwanted influence by some there. It's doubly serious when that country happens to be a place where the U.S. govt replaced their dictator with a civil war full of old rivalries and ethnic cleansing.

In this Montreal Gazette article, we learn the story of Acrassicauda- Metallica fans who've had to hide away to Damascus for their safety. Unfortunately, their visas are about to run out which means that they'll have to find somewhere else to go or risk their lives getting shipped back to their own country. As such, they're looking for help in the form of donations. Like Yo Majesty said, that's something you can support whether you're a metal fan or not.


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