Growls from the War zone
- Karmakar country: Many Dipas of Tripura taking their own leap of faith
- For India in NSG, China to send main negotiator
- No Railway Budget from next financial year, Arun Jaitley accepts Suresh Prabhu's proposal
- J&K: 15 injured in Poonch blast, pilgrims said to be target
- Tavleen Singh writes: Kashmir’s violent ‘children’
Afghanistan's first metal band, District Unknown, which is a huge part of the country's counterculture, will perform at the SAARC Festival in Delhi.
A house in Central Kabul throbs with the growls of a few boys, rehearsing for their upcoming gig in Delhi. The guitarist strums a gorgeous riff, as the drummer begins to hammer on the drumkit. Suddenly the vocalist tears in, turning into a wolf and growling Two seconds after the blast. An amplified distortion is merged with emphatic beats as the vigorous vocals kick in. The air becomes heavy with psychedelic metal resonating in the obscurity and darkness of a silent war zone.
The lyrics are dark if not mean, "but at the same time, they are socially conscious", as Pedram Foushanji, the lead drummer of the band, puts it. He mentions that the song was penned after Qasem Foushanji — Pedram's brother and the band's bass guitarist — saw a bomb go off at the Indian Embassy in Kabul in 2008. "He was in a queue for a visa but survived the bombing. But the pain and suffering he saw after the blast was horrid. The song describes that moment," says Pedram, who, along with guitar player Mohammad Qais Shaghasi, Qasem and vocalist Yusoof Ahmad Shah, forms District Unknown, the first metal band from Afghanistan that will headline the SAARC Festival in Delhi next week.
The band may revel in the deliberate menace and the dark and labyrinthine passages from their songs, but its presence seems something of an anomaly in Afghanistan, where the diplomatic mood (extremists earlier, moderates now) governs what people can and can't do. In fact, the house of band manager Travis Beard, which is also the band's jam pad, is more used to bullets and missiles than dense tunes paired with even denser vocals.
- Indians are more free than when the British left, but less free than what the framers of our Constitution hoped us to be.
- Gujarat Dalits’ move to quit ‘menial jobs’ in protest has a precedent in UP
- Ravana in Uttar Pradesh: Nayanjot Lahiri
- PM Modi needs to move from slogans to action to transform agriculture
- Nepal: The politician-activist-donor nexus dominates the appointment of judges
- To his successor, and to the PM and the government, Dr Rajan has left valuable messages