The landmark album from EMI is about to drop. Flowers in the Desert, featuring 19 of the best metal, rock, hiphop and rock bands from the Muslim world featured in the book and produced by Mark LeVine, is scheduled for a pre-holiday release. Check out the promo vid HERE:
"We play heavy metal because our lives are heavy metal."
"Music is the weapon of the future."
An eighteen-year-old Moroccan who loves Black Sabbath. A
Why, despite governmental attempts to control and censor them, do these musicians and fans keep playing and listening? Partly, of course, for the joy of self-expression, but also because, in this region, everything is political. In Heavy Metal Islam, Mark LeVine explores the influence of Western music on the Middle East through interviews with musicians and fans, introducing us young Muslims
As the crisis in Iran continues to unfold, Mark has kept in regular touch with many of that country's leading metal and hiphop artists, who have been sending him regular updates on the situation. To follow their reports, check out Mark's blog on the Huffington Post HERE which has links to Mark's analyses of the evolving situation.
Read the profile about the book and my interview with Iron Maiden at their website.
Editor's Pick, New York Times, July 20, 2008: "LeVine manages to unpack enough cross-cultural incongruities to mount his own most pit; and informative, valuable and moderately mad book... This conscientious anti-imperialist has written a swell tract in favor of a... Marshall Amps Plan... and his program is undoubtedly the first to enlist death metal as the spearhead of a new Peace Corps." >>MORE
Boston Globe, August 10, 2008.
Jorzine magazine, Amman, Winter 2009: "A joy to read with its amusing and articulate writing style... A must read for every metalhead out there, not just middle eastern ones, simply because, I can't think of
Los Angeles Times, July 17, 2008: "[LeVine's] material is rich, as he mingles scenes of conflict with surprising moments ofunderstanding... Young men in long hair and black T-shirts are proudly marginalized everywhere, but the stakes are far higher here. The sounds and scenes he finds are a fascinating social phenomenon."
Slate.com, July 28, 2008: "Rock the Mullahs! Welcome to the new
Daily Star (Beirut), August 22, 2008: "Levine's book
Rocky Mountain News, July 24, 2008: "This is an excellent and entertaining read for metalheads or anyone interested in a different look at Mideast culture... Just as there's more to LeVine than
Starred Review, Publishers' Weekly, May 12, 2008: "With a Jolting Arrangement of images and voices, LeVine powerfully upends received notions about the Middle East by exploring one of the area's least known subcultures... Warm and intelligent." >>MORE
"Highly Recommended"-Library Journal, June 18, 2008. "Using music as a prism to observe social relations, [LeVine] expertly describes the political upheaval and social confusion in the Middle East that Westerners ignore or seldom understand. This examination of the
Paste Magazine, July 2008: "Headbanging in Hejab:" LeVine chronicles and partakes, reflecting on and helping shape the reality he
Freerepublic.com, July 9, 2008: Written by the incomparable Mark LeVine, [who] LeVine has a rare talent for taking personal, comprehensible subjects and connecting them to much larger issues... This is one of the most important nonfiction books written in the past decade, and I would strap a sandwich board to my back in order to promote it. >>MORE
Kirkus Reviews: May 15, 2008: "Offer[s] a surprising message of hope and solidarity that contrasts sharply with [the music's]
Gilbey Clarke, Guns N' Roses and Rockstar Supernova: "Heavy Metal Islam is a fun read, and an important one. As an American, Islam has been portrayed as the boogie man. As a musician I can relate to the struggles they had trying to write and record their songs and the difficulty finding hard rock records where they don't exist. so this was a pleasant surprise that these young artists and fans from such a different culture can enjoy the same soundtrack of my youth." >>MORE
Lanny Cordola, guitarist and producer, House of Lords, Mellow Man Ace, ESPN, Love Supreme Coalition: "Heavy Metal Islam is an important book--relevant and timely. It captures the essence of what it means to be a musician and a Muslim. It is a book of vigor and passion, a travelogue into the heart of what it means to be alive in the belly of political mumbo jumbo-finding grace in the dirge of extremism and shedding light on the common love of power chord-riff and banshee wail." >>MORE
Mike Davis, author, City of Quartz and A Brief History of the Car Bomb: "Roll over Crusaders. As Mark LeVine discovers during his revelatory journey from Fes to Dubai, the young people of the Arab world are rockin' their socks off, and, through their audacious musical subcultures, defining a future that rejects marginality, imperialism and intolerance." >>MORE
Anton Pushansky, tripple-Grammy Award winning producer, engineer and musician: "No one else alive could have written this book. LeVine has a great musician's ear, a scholar's eye, and an activist's sensibility for pulling unseen but crucial truths out of one of the world's most troubled regions." >>MORE
Who says MTV has lost its musical
The documentary about the Muslim
Beirut's The Kordz have just released
Listen to Mark discuss
HMI is spreading across the globe.
An article about the al-Jazeera expose on
GOOD NEWS! Flowers in the Desert, featuring
Al-Jazeera, NBC News, and others covering
joined by Palestinian Rapperz, Turkish rock group
Kutsal and Irish metal kings Jeckyl, March 26,
at The Joint, 8771 West Pico, Los Angeles,
panel of artists at 8pm,
music begins promptly at 9pm.
Read Mark's interview with the Jordanian
Watch Mark's report for the first episode
Read Mark's discussion of religious
Click here to listen to Mark and Reza
Read the story about the book in the London
Get details on how to join Mark
Click here for details on how to join Mark
Read Mark's discussion of the roots of
Read about Mark's experiences in Turkey
READ Mark's article "Islamism and
READ Mark's interview with the Orange
Go to the RESOURCES section for
Read Mark's description of how Middle
READ an exclusive excerpt from Chapter Six,
HEAR Mark's interview on NPR's
View footage of Mark's recent performance
Click thumbnails for photos of Mark
Heavy Metal Islam copyright Mark A. Levine, 2008, all rights reserved | Designed by Kendra Bean