Using Music for Torture…Musicians Fight Back

Monday, October 26, 2009
Rage Against the Machine

A host of prominent musicians spoke out on Saturday against the use of music to torture detainees in Iraq, Afghanistan and Guantánamo—long after revelations first surfaced of the government’s tactic of blasting rock and pop songs during interrogations. The protesters included REM, Pearl Jam, Trent Reznor of Nine Inch Nails, Tom Morello of Rage Against the Machine, Jackson Browne, Billy Bragg, Michelle Branch, T-Bone Burnett, and David Byrne. A few musicians, like Morello and Reznor, had complained previously about their music being used as part of harsh interrogation techniques. But many others had not.

Andy Worthington, who wrote on the subject last year, discovered in 2008 “a generally indifferent industry, in which some of those whose music had been used were indifferent (Bob Singleton, for example, who wrote the theme tune to Barney the Purple Dinosaur, another music torture favorite), others (Metallica) were ambivalent, and others (Drowning Pool, for example) were positively gleeful about it.”
-Noel Brinkerhoff
Musicians (Finally) Say No To Music Torture (by Andy Worthington, The Public Record)


MC 14 years ago
Is Pearl Jam et al REALLY saying that they consider their music to be such crap that it is actual torture in any way shape or loudness? My mother who constantly told me to turn them down might agree, but my father who had bamboo shoots shoved under his fingernails might laugh his ass off at the idea that we have some so far that music is now considered "torture". Music? Torture? What sort of make believe ivory tower do these yankers live in? When we call what happened at Gitmo "torture" it is like calling Bush Hitler. It does a huge disservice to those who have suffered ACTUAL torture and belittles the true evil of the ACTUAL Nazis. I am going to boycot Pearl Jam, and the others who believe that their music is torture, because as long as Americans fund these torture outlets they will continue to make their vile weapons of mass destruction. See you, Im going out to buy Drowning Pool's complete discography.

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