HI THIS IS MY NEW POST NUMBER 2, please read post number 1 (Dusty Blogspot) BEFORE THIS.....
, all artwork is by Anarki13 (gracious thanks)
When it's all said and done, The Abbis were the first English-speaking Arab band to gain international recognition, paving the way for the likes of the first signs of what will be later called the Middle Eastern Heavy Metal (MDEHM - pronounced Medhem) in which Post-War Iraqi heavy metal played a great deal. By fusing the disparate genres of traditional Middle Eastern music and contemporary rock/metal sounds the band crafted an original style only hinted at previously, in the course of four years, they rose from semi-obscure alienated Iraqi kids into superstars of considerable status in the Arab world, only to fall too quickly as they are torn by intra-band frictions, widespread disdain in their Arab homeland and spanking scandals, their short legacy which is comprised of three official albums, is likely to be hugely influential for years to come.
Legend has it that roots of the band are traced back as early as 2005, where Abbas Khudur and Karrar Subhi were joking around on a college picnic, where they first wore their patented 'Wigs' schtick. The two would continue to jam together throughout their college years, however at these tough times of life in Iraq music was generally a spare time habit and a minor distraction from life's
ongoing necessities - the two went their separate ways after college but still maintained contact in one form or another.
By June 2008, in a convention held at Amman, Khudur stumbled by mistake upon his old jamming partner, Kurdish Mohanad Hadi who was playing for an amateur- solo guitarist bill at a Jordanian restaurant/casino at the time, an ambitious and gifted classically-focused guitarist, Khudur saw in him the courage and imagination which would fuel their co-written songs later. It was somewhat difficult for Khudur, an engineer and Mohanad, a doctor, to leave their carriers hanging by the noose whilst they pursued daydreams...but lord has mysterious ways, back in Iraq, they reunited with friends Alaa Samaka (bass) and Abdalla Anwar (drums) and started jamming intensely part-time after working hours in an abandoned garage in Karrada.
Slowly and uncertainly, the sluggish after-hours of practice began to pay due, as the band progressed into serious stuff, and wowing what little audience for rock songs with a rendition of Metallica's 'The Wait' as backup band for AccrasscidA, the country's leading (and only) heavy band. Convinced of having a winner on their hands, the band started looking for a singer.
after several unsatisfactory lineups, what could only be described as a miraculous stroke of fate that the band should inexplicably get a call from longtimenosee colleague Subhi, offering his services to the band, temporarily, as he has to relocate to London where he will work for an exporting company one year later. After hearing him sing, the band was mollified and awed, and he was taken in immediately.
In 2009, the band's first album 'Khosh Teez', was released to a virtually nonexistent market. it was a weird mixture of Khudur's eastern-influenced songwriting, Hadi's classical undertones and general heavy metal cliches that sparked some attention with a lockstep bedouin-rocker, 'What Is There and What Is Not There (Shako Mako)'. Luck played a great amount in this particular story, as the song was heard by Frank Ottuler, a representative of an upstarting recording company in Germany, home to some of metal's unheard of niches. the song was re-released to slightly better airplay, reaching #179 on the Mediterranen Metal Charts.
Following a mysterious, sulky video of 'Shakomako' and a lukewarm reception from worldwide audiences, US media capitulated on the band, writing stories which often strategically places them as models for a newborn democracy in Iraqi soil. The band's reaction was reclusion, working silently on their follow-up album, 'Haji Metal'.
Touring throughout Europe with the slime of the turbulent nu-metal scene relentlessly throughout the years, the hungry, raw energy of their exhaustion was directly plugged in the amps for this album. Seeing that the band yet has to dream of international recognition, the band scaled back their ambition to native middle eastern territory, depending on the US-media outlets to solidify their fragile star power. Signing up for EMI Arabia, and releasing the album 'Haji Metal', the band made history, as the first single from the new album 'Abo John' stormed the charts and sparked a revelation, followed by a slew of popular singles that even reached out toward Europe, being recognized not as novelty art famous because of its Iraqi nationality but for actual radio time : 'Palm Tree Date' dissected Boy/Girl dilemmas in Iraq, 'BiSK/BiSHK' a discussion of Sunni/Shi'ite politics in Iraq, and more importantly 'Mr. G' which discussed gender wars and chicken slaughter in Iraq.
The band's subject matter was new and original, its presentation to the world clever and ambiguous, depending equally on intelligent videos and magical Arabian influences, the band weaved a somewhat original heavy-oriental theme, the band's notoriety increased as bandmembers started giving
outspoken, outlandish comments on national television, to the recurring disdain from such icons as Ilham El Madfai, once on an interview, the band's guitarist Khudur said :
"We chose distorted guitars and the rock'n'roll, wholly American instruments to express our emotions not only because it has the most powerful devices to encapsulate cathartic bliss in not-necessarily vulgar terms in a way that traditional Arabic music simply, cannot, and not only because we believe that in order to infiltrate a system, one must play the fool then start to rot from within, but also because it's admittedly cool. We are very conscious of our image and what it proclaims in the wave of secularism - we are anti-America, but we are also anti-two-slut commercial whores like Haida Wahli'. he was the first performer to swear on a live interview.
Following a successful tour that lasted much of 2010, Subhi started complaining from Khudur's antics, calling him a dictator and a vengeful crusher of people's ideas - to which Khalid retorted by exposing Dohi's reluctance to continue in their mission and calling him a 'snooze'. Tensions between the band reached a point as the recording sessions for their legendary 2011 album 'People Of The Sand' a major leap forward in artistic vision, thematic control and treatment of subject matter - as their mix of influences weave its multi-part way through the album's 70 minutes, almost single-handedly responsible for the popularity of bands like AccrasscidA later in the West. 'Sad Sad Saddam', 'Melodrama' and the title track all proved huge cornerstones for all the Oriental Metal that followed afterwards. shortly afterwards the tour, Khudur and Subhi announced in a conference that there will be no more Abbis, stating with a smile that their 'mission is done.'
Khalid founded the Fire In The Wood association and released a couple of unpopular solo albums, he made money making documentaries and finally joining a TV station in Germany as part-time director, his works are collected in the anthology 'The Abbis : Fad Tifo Waghaf - Chix, Dix and Handbreak'
a religious duet with Sami Yusuf, though, proved to retain some of the band's credibility, as they performed a live version of 'Fils Take aWay!' as a short reunion in 2016.
Follow The Wayward, Subhi's solo album garnered little attention and after its premature death in 2015, the talented vocalist returned to his previous job as a computer engineer.
Hadi was the only ABBi who kept the flame, joining Ilham El Madfai's backup band and at last shot to reclusive stardom as 'Flamboyant Titty Wanker' in the classic 2018 film 'Sheikh Mahshi'.
Little more has been heard from them, but as the years progress, their influence can be heard on countless records that is likely to enliven their vision of laconic proportions for years more.
1. F.T.W. (Khaudur/Subhi/Anarki13) - 4:02
2. Hussein (Khudur/Subhi//Abd El Fatah) - 6:11
3. The Joys of Spanking Kaheel (Khudur) - 2:45
4. BiSK / BiSHK (Khudur/Hadi) - 3:36
5. Waghaf's Song (Khudur/Subhi/Anwar) - 4:58
6. American Haji (Anwar/Hadi) - 3:20
7. Independent Dependent (Khudur/Subhi/Fa'iq) - 4:20
8. My Deity (Khudur/Hadi) - 3:30
9. People Of The Sand (Subhi/Khalid) 6:23
10. Rami (Khudur/Subhi/Hadi/Samaka) - 5:30
11. Mr. G (Khudur/Hadi/Anwar) - 4:21
12. Bandpass (Subhi) - 3:00
13. Your Homemade Lovesongs (Khudur/Hadi) - 4:20
14. Alienation (Khuddur/Subhi/Hadi/Anwar) - 7:01
Rhythm guitarist and songwriter of the Iraqi Heavy Metal band The Abbis, Abbas Khudur was a misunderstood identity which impinged vital tones in Arabrock music.
Born in Baghdad, to a small family - he exhibited signs of a high knowledge aptitude early since he was just six - learning to read/write before going to primary school and learning all the world's capitals, he was also a scrawny, socially awkward and sensitive genius who couldn't really blend in with the kids all around. By the age of 15, he started listening to pop music like many of his peers, eventually switching to hip-hop and finally he discovered heavy metal. The discovery was enormous as he finally found methods to express 'all sorts of devils' in a way he always wanted. His alienation urged him to perform a number of crowd-pleasing antics, the first of which -
writing a dirty word in a class quiz - almost got him suspended. this pattern of non-conforming to authority continued in all his forthcoming life, by the age of 19 Khalid took guitar lessons and progressed through them, he also entered the legendary Nahrain University where The Abbis was first conceived. By then, Khudur has engineered his quiet observations on life into a loose theory for which he coined the term 'FTW', and by which it was interpreted by the public. The philosophical aspects of the FTW movements lies undercurrent in all Abbis albums, FTW can be explained as in general a collection of ideas that borrows as much as can be learned from the depression-soaked, cynical half-eye adolescence culture of the West and remarry it with a more spiritual, religion-based Eastern air, often presenting the latter as a solution to the former, ghosts of everyday dilemmas as inferiority, need to be wanted or especially sexual demons are widely present too. However, none of this is first apparent upon first inspection of the band's lyrical output, meaningfulness of the band's songs only happens when u put the words to the music, a classic Chris Cornell technique.
When The Abbis took off after releasing the classic 'Haji Metal', Khudur seized the moment to steal as much of the limelight as he can, appearing vigorously in several TV shows and interviews where he gave disconnected, unorthodox interviews, he was at times nice and intellectual, others sardonic and rude. Often poised as the menacing, unpredictable part of The Abbis as opposed to Hadi's friendly, emotional music and Dohi's equally bright overtures, Khalid also became an unlikely sex symbol due to his mysterious, intellectual darkness. As a string of Khudur-Hadi hits flooded the Arab charts in the beginning of the second decade of the 21st century, one of which 'Mr. G' sparked a controversy upon its dissipation of the a touchy subject as gender wars in Arabian settings, although the song was anti-homosexuality, it wasn't too clear for some people, who were the same people who objected to 'Hussein' citing its disrespect for the holy figure, after which Khudur had to unravel that it was really about Saddam Hussein, with disappointment 'I wanted it to last just a little bit more'.
Khudur had several girlfriends, but in 2012 he married his long-term and first girlfriend Muna Kelo, only to get divorced two months later, he married M. Fish two years later, and had two kids from her.
after The Abbis's disband, Khudur announced that he would explore his unfed directorial talents and started shooting commercials for restaurants on the condition that he be a director of them. In July 2, 2014, a big scandal eschewed as lewd photos of the star violently spanking an unidentified person spread over the Internet. Khudur never denied his identity, saying 'I did something wrong and I am punished for it, it is the mashee2a of Allah. It is my fault, though, I knew I should never have walked near that Jooj'. - the line, 'Never should've walked near that Jooj', was actually a cryptic wording in one of The Abbis' most overanalyzed songs 'The Joys Of Span-King Al Kaheel'. Many people insist that Jooj is the name of an obscure tavern in Bataween. He was severly looked down upon in the Arab world from here on, forcing him to relocate to shooting small-time projects for German television.
The Abbis remained immensely popular, so much that the band reunited for a short interval with multi-selling Sami Yusuf and performing some of their less flamboyant repertoire in a conservative attitude. The change didn't convince some people though, as he was killed days later after an unexpected visit in his homeland.