Having listened to Cheshme3vom (Third Eye in Persian) via the internet,  my initial audible instincts confirmed that the sounds were edgy, fast-paced punk rock, with strong vocals and intense power chords.

This could easily be included in a “best of” compilation of Hardcore…in the lines of Fugazi, The Sex Pistols, or Dead Kennedys. The lyrics, however are in Persian, and that could be the only reason that I realized that it was not coming from the US, or from Europe–and this is also the problem.

There is something to be said about the obvious and true sense of rebellion that punk once stood for: It has long since lost its way in the West , while  in Iran, where this type of  music is discouraged and freedoms of expression are restricted, the punk spirit lives on. Sort of.

It is interesting to note that the Islamic Republic of Iran, which by the time of the early 1980’s had banned Western Music for its decadence, coincided with Punk entering into the mainstream of music and fashion in the West. With this has come the overt commercialization of Punk, and Hardcore, and in-turn this has blended the line in terms of these musical forms’ original intent as a reaction to commercialization to  joining the ranks of  decadence and homogeneity.  Chesme3vom, are in many ways then commercial, as a result of almost 40 years of Punk/Hardcore music. Again, while this form of music is controversial to an Iranian audience, its simply not Iranian.

It would be fascinating to hear something that takes on the meaning of Punk and Hardcore, but in a new and unexplored format. Perhaps something that takes advantage of the rich musical traditions of Iran, yet reinterprets it and makes it its own, akin to what the Sex Pistols did to Western pop music 35 years ago. 

Since almost all forms of rebellious music are long since deceased in the West–and I mean long dead, in fact it seems we are in a musical world with bands operating like  “Night of the Living Dead”  zombies continuing to milk these genres, but instead of brains they have an insatiable appetite for money–it would be amazing to hear something that explores the real edge of oppression, resistance, and power.

What better place to come from than Iran….

About Author

Eric Parnes

Eric Parnes is a Persian-American artist And attorney, focusing on the compelling and substantive discourse resulting from the impact of commercialism and successive interaction between the Middle East (Orient) and the Western world (West). Parnes is well-known for blending historic and popular culture motives within the context of “Orientalism,” leading him to trademark the words Neo-Orientalism and NeOrientalist and serving as the basis for his narrative by incorporation of ancient, contemporaneous, and mystical characteristics.
For more of Parnes’s work, please visit: http://www.eric-parnes.com/26/works.htm