Tag Archives: music

Heavy metal from Baghdad

Maybe one day I will manage to create a whole music section for this blog but in the meantime I would like to share a band that just pumps you up! Acrassicauda is a heavy metal band from Iraq I discovered through the documentary “Heavy Metal in Baghdad”. This was a random spot of luck that came up while I was looking for the band Baghdad Heavy Metal (which, by the way, I would also recommend).

Intrigued, I ended up watching “Heavy Metal in Baghdad”, eager to find out a bit more about something related to heavy metal and to Baghdad. The documentary is really touching as it shows a fragment of every day life in Baghdad and the struggles of the band whether in Iraq, or later in Syria after they have left Iraq. It is available on Youtube (there are nine parts all in all).

I am not particularly a fan of heavy metal – though not against it either – but I do like the mixing of genres, especially of traditional arabic music or celtic music and electric guitars. Acrassicauda have that little touch in some of their songs  – though not exclusively. Here are my two favourite songs, but you might want to check their other tracks. Oh, and if you were wondering, they now live in the U.S.



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DJ who? DJ Spooky

This summer a friend of mine introduced me to DJ Spooky. He was giving a talk nearby. The name in itself is fun; a spooky DJ? I was up for it and off I went! NY-based musician and professor Paul D. Miller is one of those who can talk about almost anything and make it interesting. He could have talked about trash cans and made them fascinating. As it was, he talked about how he collected sounds in Antarctica and used them in mixes. Here is an ice-cold track! Both the concept and the beats are just awesome.

Miller is also the author of Book of Ice which includes the following excerpt:

When you think of the term “ice” there are so many connotations that
come to mind: surface tension, temperature, the opacity of the material,
the basic sense that it can transform between liquid and solid. It’s elusive
because it can become so many things. People use ice for almost every
purpose—they make houses out of it, use it in their drinks, land airplanes
on it, and if you happen to be in Finland, they make musical instruments
out of it.

What I have done with this book is unpack some of the issues that drive
my artwork and its relationship to the constantly changing facets of
contemporary life in our information-economy dominated, post-everything
twenty-first century. Looking back over the last several centuries, an
intense amount of energy has been expended all over the world exploring
and unraveling the meaning of humanity’s condition on the planet.

Whether in the book or with his music, Miller shares his idea of a free space: as the only uninhabited continent of the world, Antarctica has no government and belongs to no country. We are free to experiment music and art in Antarctica, and even imagine flags and logos for the “Republic of Antarctica” as Miller does in his book. Here is a “PDF sample” of Book of Ice.

DJ Spooky is n-ice!

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