Heavy Metal in Baghdad

With no shortage of anger in a place like Iraq, it should seem obvious that the country could spawn such radical concepts as a heavy metal band. But to be the only one in the country? Seems like a dream for Metallica.

Acrassicauda (Latin for black scorpion) is the moniker the 4 guys play under, and

Thanks to generous donations made on their behalf, the band now resides in Turkey after living a year as refugees in Damascus, Syria. In their seven years as a band they have managed to play only 6 concerts in Baghdad, 2 in Syria and one in Turkey. The war has all but destroyed their dream to live in peace, grow their hair long, bang their heads and play metal as loud as they want. Life in Turkey is proving extremely difficult for them. Acrassicauda is literally a band on the run.

Maybe not for long though. There is a feature documentary (playing limited engagements starting 5/23, nationwide sometime in June), which you can check out the trailer for below. Looks pretty interesting if we could only get that SLIPKNOT shirt off the kid in the audience.

According to the film’s SITE it

is a feature film documentary that follows the Iraqi heavy metal band Acrassicauda from the fall of Saddam Hussein in 2003 to the present day. Playing heavy metal in a Muslim country has always been a difficult (if not impossible) proposition but after Saddam’s regime was toppled, there was a brief moment for the band in which real freedom seemed possible. That hope was quickly dashed as their country fell into a bloody insurgency. From 2003-2006, Iraq disintegrated around them while Acrassicauda struggled to stay together and stay alive, always refusing to let their heavy metal dreams die. Their story echoes the unspoken hopes of an entire generation of young Iraqis.

Oh yeah, if you happen to live in Austin, you can catch the film 5/20 at the Alamo.

Those of you who’re agoraphobic can also pre-order the DVD here.


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