Wednesday, May 03, 2006

Nuclear Nonsense vs. Iranian Rock Music

Over on my friend Neda’s site, A Glinting Glimpse from Above the Wall, she has a link to a site that unfortunately sells t-shirts advocating the use of nuclear bombs against Iran. Just as with the problems concerning the Ayatollah Khomeini back in the 1980’s we are once again shown, not just how enigmatic the Middle East can be sometimes, but also how ugly and ignorant Americans can really be. There will be those who buy such shirts just as there were last time.

Why do Americans, as well as others, react so easily and clumsily to every shadow in the wood or creaking board in the house? Honestly, it’s like watching a herd of sheep change directions every time the dog barks.

I’m not buying it – not the shirt or the hype. What I would like to buy is some rock music from Iran. That’s right, there are rock bands in, and from, Iran. Like the band O-Hum. Having been a bass guitarist, I don’t understand people who would drop bombs on rock bands much less, wear a t-shirt expressing a desire to nuke innocent people. But, when I listen to this clip from O-Hum’s song Manbar, their bass guitarist and I understand each other perfectly. We’re practically twins. I also know, totally, what the drummer is saying and where he is going.

And for all you guitarists out there, I’ve always felt that it was your job to follow the rhythm section. Relax guitarists – I’m just joking! I would not presume to steal your spotlight.

And to O-Hum – you guys are pretty talented. My only production notes (personal opinion) would be to shorten the sections between verses, loosen the kick drum head just slightly, mix the guitar tracks a bit louder and maybe layer a third guitar track on top to get a grungier, thicker sound. But I still like it a lot – I’m not ever going to wear a “Nuke Iran” shirt, but I will certainly wear an O-Hum shirt any day of the week.

Rock Music: 1 - Nuclear Nonsense: 0.

Photo of O-HUM from the Beethoven Music Center in Berlin