unsongs by moddi
WHAT MAKES A SONG BANNED?
“Welcome proof of music’s continuing, if underemployed, power to confront authorities” – The Guardian
“All credit to the Norwegian singer and activist Pal Moddi Knutsen for unearthing so many songs that have
run into trouble with the censors… a folk-pop list that roams from China to Israel.” – The Sunday Times
“Moddi’s Anglicised versions of the originals are witty and spry.” –The Financial Times, ★★★★
“A celebration of defiance in the face of suppression” – The Independent
“Pure protest poetry” – BBC Radio 6 Music, Cerys Matthews Recommends
“Moddi's sensitive reimaginings have a haunting beauty and an often startling emotional kick" – GQ Magazine
“As dazzling as it is heartbreaking, and a narrative that reaches far beyond its context.” – The Culture Trip
“In making a record like this Moddi repairs a broken link between art and politics, refusing to allow those
in power to threaten or control what is allowed to be expressed in song.” – The Line Of Best Fit
He’s the Norwegian troubadour celebrated by the likes of The Guardian, The Sunday Times, USA Today and BBC World Service, uncovering forbidden songs spanning continents and centuries. Today, MODDI delivers a message that transcends melody with the release of new album ‘Unsongs’ – out now via Propeller Recordings: https://propellerrecs.lnk.to/Moddi_Unsongs
‘Unsongs’ includes a collection of 12 songs that have, at one stage or another, been banned or suppressed, with the attempts to silence them as mild as an airplay ban and as brutal as a murder. It features Moddi’s rework of Pussy Riot’s ‘Punk Prayer’ – that had the Russian feminist collective trialled and imprisoned in 2012 – and Kate Bush’s ‘Army Dreamers’, which was removed from BBC playlists during the Gulf War in 1991. Bush’s blacklisted classic returns to British airwaves more than two decades later, with Moddi’s version hailed by BBC Radio 6 (Tom Robinson, Cerys Matthews), BBC Radio 2 (Dermot O’Leary) and BBC World Service, with a featured performance on BBC Breakfast tomorrow morning.
The release is accompanied by UNSONGS.COM – an online collaboration between Moddi and photographer Jørgen Nordby, supported by Norwegian Arts Council and Fritt Ord – that features seven short documentary videos providing further insight to the ‘forbidden stories’ that feature on the album. The first video of the series details the story behind current single ‘A Matter Of Habit’, and features former Israeli soldier Yehuda Shaul of veteran combatants organisation Breaking The Silence.