The Quietus - A new rock music and pop culture website


PREVIEW: Smirnoff Open House
The Quietus , November 29th, 2016 16:56

Brought to you by Smirnoff and Thump, a new campaign sees a focus on artists whose music rallies against the restrictions of borders, unifying cultures and communities through sound

While the world appears to be crumbling at the edges of existence, Smirnoff are drawing a focus to all-inclusive music with their Open House campaign, focussing on freedom of movement and artists that refuse to adhere to ideas of borders or sonic monoculture.

A recent video (above) to support the campaign follows Nadia Tehran, an artist who grew up in a Muslim Iranian family in a small Christian town in Sweden. "I always felt borderless," she says defiantly. "Today I feel like I belong everywhere". Tehran's music explores the limits of personal and political identity and rebellion, focussing on themes of displacement, racism, and surveillance. Her Life Is Cheap, Death Is Free EP, released earlier this year, is packed full of short, sharp shocks of adrenaline: gunfire drums, lattices of bass stabs, mournful refrains and rap delivered with an uncompromising snarling drawl.

The EP's lead single 'Refugee' was accompanied by an illegally-filmed video made by Tehran and her father in Iran, featuring the artist taking part in the prohibited acts of singing, rapping and dancing in public. When they were arrested for filming, as told to Thump in a recent interview, the video only survived by Tehran hiding the memory card in her underwear before the authorities opened the camera.

Elsewhere, the Open House campaign is putting on an event in association with Thump at Peckham's Bussey Building on December 1st. Headlining will be dubstep visionary and DMZ's Mala, who's beginnings in the South London suburb of Norwood have since led to international collaborations, including with Cuban musicians in Havana at the behest of Gilles Peterson and a Peru-inspired LP Mirrors recorded with local artists and released earlier this year. Joining him will be London producer Silkie, who after releasing his first record at 16 at the tail end of UK garage, has since provided a consistent succession of 12"s and the occasional full-length to London labels like Deep Medi Musik and Antisocial Entertainment, his sound subtly transitioning from wobble to slick to weightless. Thump DJs will be on support duties. RSVP here.

This is a sponsored post. Find out more about Smirnoff.

If you love our features, news and reviews, please support what we do with a one-off or regular donation. Year-on-year, our corporate advertising is down by around 90% - a figure that threatens to sink The Quietus. Hit this link to find out more and keep on Black Sky Thinking.