We've been covering the story of the arrest of Iranian metal band Confess since 2015. The Iranian metal duo, Nikan "Siyanor" Khosravi and Arash "Chemical" Ilkhani, were arrested in November of 2015 by the Army of the Guardians of the Islamic Revolution. They were charged with blasphemy, advertising against the system, running an illegal and underground band and record label promoting music considered to be Satanic, writing anti-religious lyrics and granting interviews to forbidden foreign radio stations. Eventually, they were able to make bail ( $30,000 USD each) and flee to Norway as refugees.
They have now reformed the band, with plans to release a new album, Revenge At All Costs, in 2020. The band has added two new live members, Erling Malm on guitar and Roger Tunheim Jakobsen on drums.
The group had no plans to release new music in 2019, but last week a major event happened in Iran, and the group felt they needed to do something to raise awareness. The government of Iran announced an increase in petrol prices, by as much as 300%. According to a BBC report:
The protests erupted on Friday after the government announced the price of petrol would be increased by 50% to 15,000 rials ($0.12; £0.09 at the unofficial market exchange rate) a litre and that drivers would be allowed to purchase only 60 litres each month before the price rose to 30,000 rials.
President Hassan Rouhani said the government was acting in the public interest, and that the money raised would be distributed to the country's neediest citizens.
Many in the country rely on their car for their work, and were not okay with this sudden increase. A big part of the issue is that U.S. sanctions have crippled the economy and the people believe the government's corruption is part of the problem. Protestors have taken to the streets in many cities, shutting down roadways, burning banks and gas stations in protest of the move.
At least 12 people have been reportedly killed, with hundreds injured and no end in sight to the protests. Over the weekend, the Iranian government shut down the internet to prevent the spread of information of these protests.
Confess are hoping to use their voice to spread awareness about the situation and are releasing a new single, "Army of Pigs," their best yet, to premiere here on Metal Injection:
Frontman Nikan "Siyanor" Khosravi offered this statement to Metal Injection about the song. It has been slightly edited for clarity:
During the last few days, the majority of Iranian people became fed up with the regime and the way they are treating people. The government is taking the country to the edge with their economic and foreign policies. The government is throwing people's money away by sending it to the other countries for their political and military ambition. People are being killed cruelly by the police and no one is responsible for this! The unarmed Iranians want their rights! They're awake, angry and united and the thing is that the tripled petrol price is just a beginning to all of these injustices that Iranians are protesting about! The want the whole system to be changed and they ask for a referendum.
Confess did not have any plan to release any songs from our upcoming album, Revenge At All Costs, until 2020 but seeing all of this police brutality made me want to say something! I want to show my respect and support to my people and make awareness as far as I can while no major media cover the news!
"Army of Pigs" is the song that we had completed, and it will be on the record but it wasn't originally intended to become a single. But it seemed appropriate!