Watch Iran's emerging new music talent
June 13, 2007 5:08 PM   Subscribe

Context for those of us with barely a passing acquaintance of Iranian pop culture?
posted by Kattullus at 5:19 PM on June 13, 2007

Lyrics? In English? "Whistling" tag?

I love the music and imagery. But what Kattullus says too.
posted by snsranch at 5:44 PM on June 13, 2007 [1 favorite]

Lyrics in English:

Let not the wind into your tresses or I will go into the wind
Let not seduction be your way or I will loose mine
Drink not with any old contender or I will drown in pain
Savor not your wine or I will turn red in sobriety
Lock not your hair or I will be locked in remorse
Twist not your hair or I will get twisted
Become not the rival's friend or I will become mad with rivalry
Feel not for others or I will cease to feel
Open your face and I won't need a flower
Stand tall and I won't need the air of heights
Paint not the town red or I will shed blood for tears
Cherish not the other's company or I will perish
Steal not the limelight or all light will leave me
Ogle not or I will melt beneath your gaze
Be kind to this poor suitor and come to my aid
For me not to appeal to the Messenger
Hafez will never turn away from you
For he became free the day he was entrapped by you.

Do your own fucking legwork next time.
posted by phaedon at 5:46 PM on June 13, 2007

I hope that's not that pretty woman singing. Baad is the word alright.

Can't plucking your eyebrows and wearing bluejeans get you arrested in Iran?
posted by longsleeves at 5:48 PM on June 13, 2007

I think the tune was stolen from a Russian folk song, though I can't remember which--it sounds extremely familiar. Possibly Aleksandr Galich.

The singing is awful, but the tune is great (duh). The directing in the video is shit.
posted by nasreddin at 5:55 PM on June 13, 2007

Mohsen Namjoo is a dude. His official site is down. Since hoder isn't giving us more to go on...

Here's a rather annoying article (though not more annoying than the average Rolling Stone feature) from gives more background and explains what's so groundbreaking. According to this site the woman in the video is Zahra Amir Ebrahimi, who is supposed to have been on a sextape that leaked onto the internet, but rose to fame as a soap opera actress.
posted by Kattullus at 5:59 PM on June 13, 2007

Singing awful? Not hardly.

Mohsen's voice reminds me of Dave Van Ronk's: enormous power, idiosyncratic intonation, melisma, dynamic modulations of volume.

Even the steel string guitar sounds Dave-like in spots.

This song shows again the expressive power of a single male voice with guitar, whether it be from Fars or Flatbush.
posted by rdone at 6:06 PM on June 13, 2007

I know this guy. Actually my dad knows him. He is one of the people leading the new generation of music in Iran. People that I know usually either really love him or really hate him. Personally, I can't stand him. Most of his style is copied from different genres (both Eastern and Western). But he usually pastes the borrowed pieces in a random nonsense mesh, where the lyrics and the music and the sound effect share nothing but a 'cool factor'. His music pretty much always give me a headache.

I would recommend checking out Kiosk ( for another modern Iranian band. While these guys also borrow most of their music, at least the lyrics and general feeling of the songs match with the borrowed pieces.

This is just my personal feeling about these bands. Hope I haven't offended anyone here.
posted by lenny70 at 6:09 PM on June 13, 2007 [1 favorite]

Wow, this song is great. Thanks, hoder. Reminded me of Tom Waits in parts.
posted by effwerd at 6:16 PM on June 13, 2007

I like that cast-intonation-to-the-wind quality of reckless abandon this singer has: for me it's quite reminiscent of Flamenco singing styles. Very human. And I appreciate how minimal the arrangement is. I'm a fan of minimal arrangements: there's just so much music these days which is over-thick, too jammed up. This breathes, it harkens back to a time when an unprocessed voice and a lyric was... enough. And yeah, snsranch, the whistling tag: good call! The video gets tiresome really fast, though. I think the song deserves a better visual interpretation.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 6:25 PM on June 13, 2007

lenny70: Thanks! I really liked that Kiosk song. I'm going to try to find an album somewhere. Is that their best?
posted by nasreddin at 6:26 PM on June 13, 2007

I could totally see that chick's ankle.
posted by goatdog at 6:29 PM on June 13, 2007 [1 favorite]

This page lets you stream their first album: Ordinary Man.

Here you can find all their music videos.

here is one my most favourites with English subtitle.

The power of love or love of power
Modernism versus tradition forever

Living in the evil axis
Speed freaks in jalopy taxis

Why feel any pain and suffer
When pills and powders' all on offer

Nothing for lunch or dinner to make
Then let them eat Yellow Cake

posted by lenny70 at 6:35 PM on June 13, 2007

His site index says the site is down but his music page has a (12 MB) track, also.
posted by effwerd at 6:41 PM on June 13, 2007

Can't plucking your eyebrows and wearing bluejeans get you arrested in Iran?

You need to watch the music videos made by the Iranian ex-pats living in LA. Meow. Actually, almost all the Middle Easter music videos I've seen have featured wicked hot women.
posted by chunking express at 7:09 PM on June 13, 2007

Man it's been a rough day for posters in the blue , sorry about that hoder. I enjoyed it.
posted by nola at 7:50 PM on June 13, 2007

I blame Queen.
posted by peeedro at 8:13 PM on June 13, 2007

How could anyone think the singer was a woman?
posted by delmoi at 8:39 PM on June 13, 2007

Oh my... as someone who grew up with Persian music, and has heard some pretty bad Tehrangeles Pop, this more than anything else makes my ears bleed.
posted by BuddhaInABucket at 10:55 PM on June 13, 2007

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