01st Jun 2013
Sound Central Festival 2013, Afghanistan’s only alternative arts festival held April 30 and May 1 – 4, 2013, was a massive success by all standards. Audiences over the four-day period were larger and more diverse than in previous years, more bands played and a wider variety and number of artists demonstrated their talents. Held at Kabul’s Institute France Afghanistan, this year’s festival, our third annual festival, broke all previous records and created a safe and comfortable environment for both men and women to enjoy the performing arts.
Core Statistics:
• 2,594 people attended the four-day festival; 85% were Afghan nationals. • 550 women attended Women’s Only Day, the festival opener on April 30, had a record audience comprised of school girls, women residents of a local shelter, Afghan Girl Scouts, Afghan women’s sports teams, a Kabul orphanage, and members of the general female population including young professionals. • 10 women's organisation's displayed and sold their handmade clothing, jewellery, art, and crafts.
• 32 bands performed. • 28 performing artists displayed their work. • Visiting musicians came from Australia, USA, France, Poland, UK and Uzbekistan! • Performances and displays included music, film, photography, painting, puppetry, live graffiti painting, skateboarding, poetry and bicycle riding. • Media coverage: the festival was covered by major international and local broadcasters, with Tolo TV dedicating several prime slots to the festival. Tolo has a 45% share of viewers in Afghanistan. • SCF’s website statistics went up by 57.28% over the festival week. • SCF’s Facebook page stats went up by 179.77%, from the 29th to 4th of May it reached 31,744 people. • SCF’s179 tweets during the four-day festival reached 16,628 accounts and was exposed to 25,835 more accounts. • 1,600 viewers in 37 countries watched Afghanistan's first ever festival live feed to the world produced by Paywast.
• • 1.
Our target age group was 18-24 YO, with 34.1% being female
The top 3 countries traffic to the festival was Afghanistan, 2, Pakistan and 3. USA
Day 1
Women Only Day was dedicated to women and drew 550 women. The all female audience was treated to rap from Ramika and Paradise, Rock from White City, Folk music from Ariana Delawari, sound-scape from Julie Rousse. A fashion show was provided by two young Afghan sisters, The Wonderland Women.We had poetry recitals by numerous Afghan girls. There were also interactive classes in bicycle riding from M2M and skateboarding with Skate-Aid, as well as exhibitions of painting from Latiffa Anzurgar, Malina Suliman and photographs from Mariam Alimi.
Day 2
Our second day was open to men and women, with all the content from the day above with the exception of the fashion show. We hosted the finals to Afghanistan’s first ever Poetry Slam and the winner was a young Afghan female. Our indoor stage was dedicated to world music and had acts such as Kabul Sound Society, Adam and the I’s, Buoy LaRue and Dirty Jeans. Outside, our graffiti group Berang took over the IFA walls and skateboarding activities increased with male interaction. A life-size photographic exhibition from Streets of Afghanistan added vibrant colour to the IFA compound. On the outdoor stage we featured electronic acts like Julie Rousse, DJ Sully, Craig McVegas, Haroun Omar and rappers FM and Hybrid Pharaohs.
Day 3
On our third day, we “turned it up”, literally. The indoor stage was dedicated to rock with local bands such as Kabul Dreams, Morcha, District Unknown, White Page and the new kids on the block, Face Off rocking the mixed crowd. It was clear that all local bands had made big improvements since last year which was reflected in the audiences reaction, ecstatic. They were joined by international band based in Kabul, White City and Uzbek funk band Tears of the Sun. The outdoor stage mirrored the day 2 program and all the sports and arts areas were again alive with activity. Throughout the day we screened short films from Holland, UK [Future Shorts], Roya Films [Afghan] and UNAMA. The day’s program closed with the Afghan premier of Ariana Delawari’s award winning film “We Came Home.”
Day 4
The final day of the festival was dedicated to the headlining act, Masala Sound System, who were hosted by the Polish Embassy. This shorter program started at 5pm with Morcha performing an acoustic set with their original singer who had just flown back from Germany. This was followed by an improvisational jam session by Unknown System. Masala closed the concert with an amazing show. Their mix of modern Dub beats, Polish hip hop lyrics, and most importantly eastern influences of sitar and tabla, wowed the Afghan audience and they were a first time hit. The audience had never heard their music before and the crowd reaction was more energetic than any other act within in the entire program. This concert was a perfect way of illustrating that music is a global language and can bring opposite sides of the world together in a community like no other art form.
29th, Julie Rousse conducted a electronic illustration workshop at the Rock centre to an audience of 5 students.
Michael Herrman from Buoy LaRue, gave continuous classes in guitar and singing at the Rock centre throughout the festival week.
Adam Nicholas from Adam and the I’s gave singing classes at the Rock centre throughout the festival month.
There was constant spray paint experimentation by the audience in the IFA outdoor area. There was skate board and bicycle classes in the IFA front area.
Sound Central Festival continues to demonstrate that it is triggering, supporting and attracting new creative activity among young Afghans.
As in past years, we have seen new acts like Hybrid Pharaohs & Paradise pop up from nowhere to participate in the festival. We turned down four Afghan acts because they were not up to our standard of performance, but we have told them to practice and come back to us for the 2014 festival.
Since the 2013 festival finished, more than 10 Afghans have contacted us asking where they can learn to play an instrument and we have referred them onto the Rock Centre, run by Robin Ryczek.
Kabul Dreams has just released their album and both District Unknown and White Page are currently recording their EPs.
One of the female painters from Berang recently moved to India after threats from the Taliban resulting from her work in Kandahar. She returned to be a part of the festival and brought her family to the event. They have consequently lifted a ban on her practicing art. She is now allowed to continue her passion in the future.
The Women’s shelter, Girls Scouts, and numerous girls’ schools have asked to take part in the 2014 festival.
The festival live feed was viewed by over 1,600 people in 37 countries.
The entire festival was documented by our video and photo team, as well as a visiting Dutch comic artist, Jules Calis, who sketched scenes from the festival that will be published in a book and Dutch newspaper.
The following week, Morcha hosted their own concert [set up by them] at the Orange Café
Masala Sound System, in association with the Polish Embassy, are already discussing concerts in Afghanistan for the near future.
The skateboarding display by Skate-Aid, has now been taken to the next level with a new skate-park being planned for Kabul.
Our Women Only Day was such a massive success that we are considering to turn this into its own unique festival in 2014.
Again SCF has proven to be Afghanistan’s biggest annual and most popular alternative arts event. Our Women Only Day played to a full house. The other 3 days brought the largest crowd IFA has ever had. All statistics are up from 2013 and surpassed our pre-festival predictions. The SMS campaign hosted by Paywast displayed direct positive feedback from the Afghan audience [see appendix].
The 85% Afghan audience was exposed to vibrant new art forms and music genres. Outside of the festival venue in Kabul, Afghans watched it on all national TV stations. Globally, some of the
worlds biggest media outlets, including BBC, reported on the festival and took the message to the world that Afghan youth are hungry for alternative arts and culture like youth anywhere else in the world.
Embassies: Swiss, French, Polish, Australian, Dutch, Czech and UK Afghan Private Sector: IFA, Moby/Tolo, UNAMA, Paywast, Cardre
Solutions, Roya Films, Goethe, HKCC, SSRC, ACKU, International Club
Global Companies: Paiste, Future Cinema, Mushroom IT, Skate-Aid, Iosis
Top Press Hits:
BBC, AFP Stills, NPR, Reuters, AFP Video, NATO TV, BBC Persia Media Reports peaked on Womens day and it is clear that this will be the flagship event for 2014.
Sound Central Festival 2012 Report
Afghanistan’s Only Alternative Arts Festival
Executive summary
For the second year running, Sound Central Festival was an unprecedented success with in excess of 1600 people attending over three days. We had an equal ratio of men to women performing on stage and participating artistically, giving young Afghan men and women valuable examples of participation in cultural life in a public setting.
Core Facts:
• 3 day Festival [1st day dedicated to Women]
• 1600 + attendance in total [Biggest ever attendance at I.F.A]
• 27 Artists performed [From: Australia, France, UK, Sweden, USA, Mexico, Sri Lanka, Pakistan]
• Art included: music, film, photo, dance, theatre, circus, live painting, screen printing, jewellery
• Premiered Afghanistan’s first ever female rap artists: Rameeka & Sasoun, live on stage
• Hosted the Afghan premiere of the film Buzkashi Boys
• Screened 6 films from the Summer season of Future Shorts Film Festival
• Supported by Kabul Embassies, Local Private Sector and Global Companies.
• National and international press coverage was extensive
Day by Day
Day 1 The festival opened with a day dedicated to women. There were only female performers and female-led bands on the main stage. In addition to this we hosted female painters and graffiti artists in the outside areas, as well as female craftswomen. Most of these women were Afghan. Apart from our core staff, we were keen to have as few men as possible attending this day; only female press were allowed entry and we had female volunteer stewards from Kabul University.
Our turnout was around 200 over the course of the day. We are very aware of the barriers to women’s participation in Afghanistan, and had sought to eliminate one of these barriers by removing the attendance of men. Additionally, many of these girls were seen attending the festival on other days.
While Ariana Delawari, Ruth Owen, Robyn Ryczek, Norma Ferriera and Rameeka entertained the female audience from the indooor stage, outside we had Khalta, Maria Iqbal and Shamsia offering art at the second stage. Spontaneously 10 young orphan girls took to the main stage during band crossover to sing a song.
Day 2 was our heaviest day in regards to performance styles and audience enthusiasm. By the second day our festival machine was well oiled and a new benchmark of event production levels was reached in Afghanistan. With the addition of men to the mix, our numbers grew to over 500 and the balance flowed smoothly.
Singer song writer; Omar Farooq from Pakistan opened the show and Afghan heavy weights District Unknown definitely provoked the prime moment of the festival with the most energetic and crowd provoking act, that included the countries first ever ‘stage dive’. White City, Kabul’s longest running band played a fantastic acoustic set. 3 Afghan DJs kept the side stage rolling over, while the Afsana Circus and Face Off (the Afghan break dance crew that took the crowds by surprise) performed.
The female art troop were joined by graffiti artists. Q Artery and Parwaz Circus made the surprise act appearance of the day, when they appeared on stage dressed as clowns in the middle of a performance by heavy sounding duo; Lap-o-Jap.
Day 3 was huge, due to it being the end of the week [Thursday] and the fact that we saved some of the best acts for the last day. Paranoid Earthling from Sri Lanka headlined and showed Afghans that there is another [post] conflict zone with a vibrant music scene, not very far from their borders.
Ariana Delawari brought to the stage with her mix of LA and ethnic, that charmed the male audience and gave a shinning example of what is possible to the female counterparts. But the day had to be given to Rameeka and Sasoon who, backed by Pit Panther Party rocked the capacity crowd. With one of our female staff, she wrote a song – Bishnow (Listen). Over the course of ten days, she went from never having performed a song live before, to performing at one of our pre-festival ‘sideshows’, to performing on the main stage at the festival.
The crowd reached a record capacity of 900, at the time of the Afghan premier of Sam French’s film Bushkazi Boys. There was not even standing room in the auditorium and outside 300 people had the Face Off dance crew to keep them entertained. Sam’s film was accompanied by a Q & A including the cast of the film. The festival closing act was an electronic Dub duo from Australia and France: System Unknown Live.
Our staff ran two music workshops for women prior to the festival. 8 young women were selected to attend these 4 hour workshops which encouraged them to get creative with music. Each group wrote and recorded their own songs, with guidance from our staff: Izzy Brown and Ariana Delawari. Rameeka was inspired to perform in public following these workshops.
The week before the festival, Kabul was saturated with sideshows, from all visiting artists at various venues around Kabul. These sideshows gave artists a chance to play longer sets and be closer to the crowd than in the festival atmosphere.
Total direct - 1600
Total potential indirect – through broadcast on Tolo, millions nationwide, 10’s of million global-wide
Without a doubt, Kabul now has a growing alternative arts scene and Sound Central Festival 2012 hosted the eclectic troop of artists in a dynamic, yet safe environment. It is clear that the Afghan youth are thirsty for more art based activities in the capital and we hope this festival can become an annual showcase for years to come. With events like this, we are raising the bar on production output, artistic content and audience participation. Sound Central Festival 2013 is already in planning for April, with a bigger and more diverse program than ever before.
Embassies: Dutch, Estonia, Czech and Canadian
Afghan Private Sector: Moby/Tolo, Paywast, Galleria, Gundara, APL,
Global Companies: Paiste, MoveOne, Reuters, Future Cinema, Mushroom IT, Melody House
Top Press Hits:
BBC NTD-TV Rolling Stone ME CCTV The Guardian USA Today The Times Washington Times
Rolling Stone Russia BBC The Times REUTERS Independent ABC TV Radio France UNAMA
Rameeka’s first ever public performance
Sound Central Festival is Afghanistan & Central Asia's first regional rock music festival, as well as Afghanistan's first rock festival since Ahmad Zahir's shows in 1975. Last year’s festival was realized in Kabul on the 1st of October, with opening and closing nights in New York, September 15th to October 14th, 2011. Argus Productions created a global buzz with its vision to build solidarity in a non-partisan, non political but simply musical way. Below are the top 10 media hits from the 2011 festival: 1. Rolling Stone, 2. BBC UK, 3. ABC, 4. Reuters, 5. CBS News, 6. BBC UK Newsbeat, 7. France24, 8. The New Yorker, 9. The Guardian,10. MSNBC
Last year we were joined by musicians from all over Central Asia and beyond: 2011 Performers. Kabul also hosted workshops by numerous international musicians including: Brian Viglione of The Dresden Dolls (USA) and Acrassicauda (Iraq). Lastly we hosted a week of pre-festival side shows for the Afghan youth.
With much attention from the music industry, Argus Productions is now in contact with major international artists and industry for support. To date, twenty-seven International bands from all over the world have expressed interest and applied to participate in this years’ festival. Their genres range from rock to metal, jazz to hip-hop, and more!
With the participation of Afghan bands from around the country, SCF12 will hold the main event in a central location. [ie: Institute Francais Afghanistan IFA.] The presence of special guest artists enhances the experience of the world's great music festivals and creates opportunities for cultural exchange. Guest bands will come for one week, which will include teaching the Afghan youth at The Rock Center, as well as participation in the sideshow Sound Studies Projects performances at The Venue.
SCF12/ Argus Productions and its sponsors are endeavoring to find funding to cover transportation and accommodation at a comfortable but modestly priced guesthouse or hotel. All visiting bands will receive a modest stipend for meals. All invited artists are strongly encouraged to be proactive in finding sources of funding and instrument donations, that can be donated to the The Rock Centre at the end of the festival week
Show dates are 26th, 27th and 29th of September, with 5 days of pre-festival sideshows and 2 days of workshops between international and local musicians
Argus Productions / Sound Central Festival (SCF) CORE Team
Travis Beard, Founder/Director of SCF and co-founder of Argus Productions. He was also a co-founder of Skateistan, Kabul Knights Motorcycle Club and Aina Photo.
Humayun Zadran, co-founder of Argus Productions and Logistic Manager of SCF, is the proprietor of The Venue. Robin Ryczek, teaches and performs cello and contemporary music and has been involved in the music development of Kabul since 2010.
28th Apr 2013
Afghan "pop star" belittles Afghan underground alternative music scene in a recent BBC persian interview.
"Rock music: This genre - based on an incorrect perception in Afghanistan - has contrarily become an avenue for the youth to escape from mental pressure, an act by the music mafia aiming at misleading the strained generation from a number of war experiences and immigration. Today its different musicians, from Alternative Rock to Punk Rock and the heaviest type Death-Metal Rock..., believe they shake the underground of music in Afghanistan without seeking a justification for it going underground. The mafia of underground music has taken hostage the youth - who are thirsty and hungry for arts - for free, and leads them to drugs, sexual misbehavior, and to escape the country, in the name of experimenting in the free world."
A member of Afghanistan's first heavy metal rock band District Unknown, Afghanistan responded with this letter:
"A while ago, I read Massoud Hassanzada's article on Farhad Darya and what he had said on the Farsi website of BBC. I said to myself "Maybe Massoud has Russian/Communistic tendencies while Farhad has American/Capitalistic, and Farhad is more famous, and that is why Massoud is jealous to Farhad."
But when I opened the link to the website of BBC, I came to know that dear Farhad Darya speaks such the below mentioned words. It sounds like he is angry and jealous too.
I liked Farhad Darya a lot. My family members are still fans to his songs from the 80s. When my brother had just come to Afghanistan and had come to know about him, started calling Farhad as a "capsule filled with intelligence." I was, as well, so proud to have such musician on my country's soil, and even bought the original version of the album "HA!" as I believed in supporting Farhad.
Today Farhad says "Rock music: This genre - based on an incorrection perception in Afghanistan - has contrarily become an avenue for the youth to escape from mental pressure, an act by the music mafia aiming at misleading the strained generation from a number of war experiences and immigration. Today its different musicians, from Alternative Rock to Punk Rock and the heaviest type Death-Metal Rock..., believe they shake the underground of music in Afghanistan without seeking a justification for it going underground."
I wish both Farhad and I had time, and I wish he was alive to me, so that I could go see him and say to him that: My band District Unknown is neither escaping from a mental pressure nor cares about the number of the people who listen to its music. It neither thinks of fame nor of becoming a Peace Ambassador, and it sings because it's in its nature of it, because it loves music.
Yes, we are young and full of energy and this is not our fault that you don't have energy as much as we do. It's not our fault that you have become old, that you are from the past generation and that we are from the next one. What should we do? Should we sing your songs? or become limited to that which everybody would listen to, and say "Such a great song" ? What should we do for that our position has no connection to you and your channels, o' legend of arts in Afghanistan?
Dear Farhad, it's not our fault if we are cool but your jealousy, your jealousy to everything and everyone that moves the spotlights bit away from your face. If a few foreigners provided a platform for us which no one else couldn't, and if ideas that crossed our minds did not cross yours, you shouldn't necessarily tell us "The mafia of underground music has taken hostage the youth - who are thirsty and hungry for arts - for free, and leads them to drugs, sexual misbehavior, and to escape the country, in the name of experimenting in the free world."
Farhad, I am healthier from younger days in every aspect.
What you have said is no more than insulting to me and to those who look at arts from the same angle I look at and you used to look at. It's been quite a while you don't see it anymore.
You are neither the father to alternative music, nor its mother, no one is, and everyone is. And the free world is a phenomena in which you became a Peace Ambassador to defend it, but you memorized it and you cannot grasp it.
There is much to say, truth is bitter, and there's not much time.
And Farhad still looks for fame. I don't know what he wants. He has everything, even more than he deserves, more than his right.
District Unknown, and those similar to it, have no connection to Farhad, and are not interested in working with him, because unfortunately his viewpoint on arts has recently become ill, a bitter truth for Farhad that considers himself as the inheritor to everything of this country's music but he's not."
22nd Apr 2013
SCF is proud to announce its newest partner, the Swiss Cooperation for Development. They are now our largest donor and we look forward to working with them in 2013 and years to come!
17th Apr 2013
SCF13 is very proud to announce that we are partnering with
Together we put on skate display at the festival, with ramps, rails and skaters!
15th Apr 2013
Afghan - Canadian band: Yaqubi Brothers
Are booked for our 2014 festival. They have also an EP online:
So for all of you out there, that want to support afghan alternative music, click on that link!
01st Apr 2013
SCF13 is proud to present a new partner in this years festival:
We Believe in Balloons is an international campaign to share 10,000 pink balloons with the people of Kabul, Afghanistan. With $1 USD contributions coming from thousands of citizens around the world, we will bring hope and beauty to a city that has endured war and destruction for more than a decade.
Whether during the Soviet Occupation, the Civil War or the Taliban Regime, the Afghan people have been subject to continuous conflict and oppression. As a result, Afghanistan has been starved economically, socially and culturally. Whilst large streams of refugees inundated the cities post 2002, life in more remote areas of the country has remained unchanged, in some instances for decades, in others even for centuries.
It is for this reason that we have chosen Kabul as the next destination for our Monday Morning series, following similar events in Bangalore in India, Nairobi in Kenya, and Yamaguchi in Japan. In each of those places, we disrupted the Monday Morning commute ritual by handing out 10,000 bio-degradable bright balloons, creating a living sculpture that brought about joy, wonderment and a new sense of awareness to people.
The Kabul series entails one more component, which is meant to symbolize an international effort, a direct reaching out by people from all over the world to the people of Afghanistan. With the awareness in mind that Afghan people continue to face life each day, despite the hardship and struggles they have and continue to encounter, the art piece will be financed by people giving no more than a single dollar -- a single balloon in an effort to generate a direct connection within and equal ownership of the overall manifestation.
Over one hundred volunteers will hand out hot pink balloons this coming spring.
Thousands of hand-to-hand exchanges will weave a living tapestry, creating a stream of shared instances of unexpected happiness.
01st Apr 2013
MTN-Mazar Mobile Music Tour-Now Roz-2013
27th Mar 2013
Thanks to the Polish Embassy and Institute of Adam Mickiewicz, we are proud to announce that Masala Sound System will perform at SCF13. Get ready to rumble with this groups eclectic mix of musical genres!
09th Mar 2013
The Brit Embassy hosted SCF13 last Thursday night. The reception was full with a colour mix of both Kabul's international and nation community. The highlight of the night was a performance by local fusion music group; Atan Watan
And we were pleasantly surprised to unearth the impressive skills of a Brit pianist.
09th Mar 2013
The Australian Government, has kindly donated funds to the 2013 festival, as well as facilitated the inclusion of Australian musicians into the festival. We are proud to have the Australian Government supporting our festival and hope this partnership continues for years to come.
23rd Feb 2013
We've heard back from numerous donors that their Tshirts / hoodies and other gifts have started arrive to people door steps.
If you havnt received your gift yet, hold on a little long, they are in the post!
Thank you again to everyone who donated and to Alex Kealey for gathering all the gifts and sending them out!
16th Feb 2013
The SCF team is very proud to announce that the award winning film by Ariana Delawari: We Came Home, will make its Afghan Premier at SCF13.
11th Feb 2013
Thank you to Paiste again for donating cymbals to our festival!
To add to the 14 cymbals we already have, Paiste is going to send us:
1x 16” PST8 China
1x 18” Twenty Custom Coll. Thin China
Check out their site and join in supporting alternative arts in Afghanistan!!!!
06th Feb 2013
SCF is proud to announce that the French, Canadian and British Embassies are all helping make SCF13 possible
Also the Streets of Afghanistan, life size, travelling exhibition from Mountain2Mountain will also be featured at the festival.
27th Jan 2013
After several meetings, both the CZECH and DUTCH embassy have both committed to supporting SCF in 2013! Thank you for believing in us again.
We are still meeting with other donors and hoping to secure more funds asap, so we can make SCF13 bigger and better than 2012!!!!
18th Dec 2012
SCF is very proud to announce that we will be partnering with Berang at our 2013 festival:
BERANG previously known as (Roshd) is an association of contemporary arts based in Kabul, Afghanistan, established by young afghan contemporary artists who were selected as top contemporary young artists of Afghanistan from Torques Mountain Foundation in 2009, Kabul. Berang has worked to keep alive the momentum in contemporary arts that has begun to move through Kabul in the last years.
Young artists of Berang believe that art is the best language for exploring thoughts, emotions and creation and art is the effective way to translate the contrast of the society and to bring positive changes and real peace in our society. We work in deferent field of contemporary arts (painting, photography, installation, music, sound art, graffiti, calligraphy, miniature and video performance). Young artists of Berang create art and work for contemporary arts at the time when we lost our improvement of our culture and arts after 30 years war in Afghanistan.
20th Oct 2012
hey hi Travis,
Accept my greetings for today,
Thank you for that it was my pleasure to be among you guys in Festival, i had the best time ever and wont forget that, i will love to attend such events again, to be honest you're doing a great job and accept my thanks and best wishes on be half of my afghan young generation.
will wait for April then .... See you :)
30th Sep 2012
26th Sep 2012
Last night we had an awesome start to the festival fortnight with performances by
MC Izzy, F&M, Pit Panther Party and SU live
26th Sep 2012
The Festival dates have been pushed back to the 2nd, 3rd and 4th of October.
Sideshow and workshop dates: 25th and 29th of September
2nd of October is Women's only day
3rd and 4th of October are open days to all the public
See you there!
24th Sep 2012
WE at SCF are very proud to announce that we are teaming up with my dear friend Sam French to screen for the first time in Afghanistan his epic short film; Buzkashi Boys
The film will be screened at 5pm on the 4th of October
22nd Sep 2012
Paranoid Earthling – Sri Lanka – Grunge Metal
Ariana Delwari – Afghan - World
System Unknown Live – Australia – Dub
Ser Raymond & DJ City Power – Aus/UK – Electro-mix
White City – Aus/UK/Sw – Punk Rock
District Unknown – Afghan - Metal
Izzy & The P.P.P – Aus/Fr/Sw – Heavy Funk Hip Hop
Kabul Dreams – Afghan – Brit Rock
Lap o Jap – Af/Aus – Stoner Sludge Metal
Morcha – Afghan – Blues Pop
4Q2 – Aus/UK/Fr - Rock n Roll
Ring of Steel – Af/Aus - experimental
Haroun Omar – Afghan – Progressive House
Bon Enfants – US/Mex – World
DJ Mirwaz J - Afghan - RnB
Sulleiman Omar - Afghan - Dub Step
Parwaz Puppet Theatre – Afghan – Theatre Pop
Vibra Lab – Aus/Sw - experimental
FM/Face Off – Afghan - Dance Troop
Notb412 – Aus/Fr - Electronica
18th Sep 2012
Future Cinema's partnership with Sound Central Music Festival in Kabul and production of La Haine (featuring live score by Asian Dub Foundation) will be postponed until 2013.
With the small time frame we had, there was insufficient time to meet our financial target, and by postponing we can ensure to raise enough funds to fly all the necessary team out.
We will continue to support the Festival in 2012 by screening our Autumn Future Shorts Programme in September and thank you for your interest in this partnership.
Please continue to support the cause and learn more about the young emerging arts, film, music and culture movement in Kabul
11th Sep 2012
The long awaited arrival of the donated cymbal set from Pasite, arrived this week.
The set includes:
10” Splash
16”Thin Crash
17”Thin Crash
18” Thin Crash
15” Light Hats
Masters Collection 20” Sweet Ride
2002 16” Paperthin
2002 19” Thin Crash
THANK YOU Paiste and Kabul, get ready to rock!
31st Aug 2012
We are proud to reveal our festival mascot: Blackie.
Made by our dear friend Munira.
If you would like to order your own SCF mascot or get a orignial design made, then email Munira at:
From Munira:
Bwoken Wabbits is a project that, at the beginning they were just Rabbits or Bunnies. My friend Ru from White City had suggested the “Bwoken Wabbits”. They are all sewn from random pieces of leather and different fabrics.
The process of making every bunny is absolutely unique. I never know what will be the result and how the bunny will look in the end. I have a mood or may be a special moment which I want to reflect in this specific rabbit and I begin the work with this idea in my head. Then the bunny shows the way he should look like. For this moment there are absolutely no two identical bunnies. Everyone is unique.
I decided to make a special edition for the festival that reflects RnR and the spirit of music globally.
About Munira:
Menswear designer getting the main inspiration from music, making her clothes for musicians, rock’n’rollers and other people with this rock’n’roll energy inside. With hobbies as sewing bunnies, making animation and shooting rock-concerts.
My label “Flying Elephants”
23rd Aug 2012
SCF has just received 15Kgs of cymbals from Paiste!
Kabul, get ready to Rock!!!!!
21st Aug 2012
Future Cinema is joining forces with Sound Central Music Festival 2012 to stage the second ever Music and Film Festival in Kabul, Afghanistan on the 26th, 27th and 29th September preceded by five days of education workshops and sideshows for the musical community from 20th – 25th September.
In addition to more than 10 musical acts confirmed; Future Cinema will partner with the Festival to encourage the vibrant and emerging arts culture in Kabul following its tremendous success from last year. Future Cinema will work with the Festival to introduce feature and short film productions, a global fundraising initiative and curation of musical education workshops for local children and arts community.
16th Aug 2012
Hey All
we are down to the last 2 days of the fund raising campaign on indiegogo. To entice you donate, we have some new gifts to offer:
Anyone that donates over $101 gets all the promised gifts PLUS: A Pair of Combat Flip Flops, any style and size. Check them out here
Anyone that donates over $201 gets all the promised gifts PLUS: A Gundara; Missy Simple - Natural Leather Shopping Bag Check them out here
An anonymous donor has pledged to match the total amount of donations made in the last 24 hours. So if we get $xxx in the last 24 hours, they will match it!
So Dig deep everyone and help us help the Alternative Afghan Music Scene stay alive!!!
*The Bags are naturally tanned leather and that it darkens when exposed to light and softens with time
03rd Aug 2012
SCF [Combat Comms] has teamed up with Combat Flip Flops, a company that makes flip flops from ex military boots. Check them out here:
For every pair of flip flops sold CFF will donate $5 to our festival!
[See pics for models that qualify]
Ok crew go and do some retail therapy!
01st Aug 2012
or on our audio page
22nd Jul 2012
"Travis! I would be silly not to support an awesome cause. I think everyone should have the choice and opportunity to go enjoy great live music, regardless of any situation life may throw at them. Lots of love and support from Melbourne, brother."
“Once social change begins it can not be reversed. You can not un-educate the person that has learned to read. You can not humiliate the person who feels pride. You can not oppress the people who are not afraid anymore.” -Cesar Chavez. Thank you dc for encouraging that :D
"Great idea, good luck with making it happen."
"Go Travis and everyone!"
"I had a small part in putting together SCF11, and it was one of the best things I’ve ever done. The show itself was spectacular, and this year’s will be even bigger, and the Afghan talent even better! Turn it up!"
"Travis, you are doing a wonderful job. Let the world rock and drop the weapons !"
"Such an amazing event!"
"let the music play on…"
"Best of luck! Would love to see this happen for the people of Afghanistan"
17th Jul 2012
So far our crowd fundraising campaign has raised over $1400 in the first 24 hours! THANK YOU so much to everyone who has donated.
We still have a long way to go, but i know we can do it
Click here:
16th Jul 2012
Everybody, [yes you too] click on the link below:
Watch this 3 min vid' and help us keep the Afghan Alternative Music Scene Alive!!!!!
Once you have done that, share this link with EVERYBODY you know. If everyone contributes even the smallest amount, it will take us closer to our target goal and we can rock Kabul for a second year running!
13th Jun 2012
We at SCF12 are very proud of our festival engineer Jason Beard, who recently won an award for the score to a short film at the LA Film Awards. We wish him all the best with future film score and look forward to having him back here again this year for the festival!!!!
09th Jun 2012
Curated & Presented By Metal Postcard Records
Hong Kong-based Metal Postcard may be a small label, but its ambitions are loudly independent, original and uncompromising SE Asia Globe Magazine
Basically for the first time in years I found myself excited by the idea of CDs. I found myself excited by the idea of holding them and learning more about the bands I was hearing on them, who were all simply brilliant. These aren’t artists which I’ve seen over saturating in social media hype, sandwiched between horrible, soulless advertisements on Vevo’s Youtube channel, or plugged in some plastic-fantastic TV drama. I had never heard of any of them but I very glad I can now play their music on a daily basis On Metal Postcard Records Releases
Many moons ago in the UK in the late 70's the Futurama Festival was held in a rather dank warehouse space in Leeds and featured acts such as the Gang of Four , Adam & The Ants and Joy Division whilst they were still unknowns. The festival aimed to bring Britain's exciting underground now knowns as Post Punk to a wider audience. As festivals have become more commercialized and trading on a faux hippy ethic Metal Postcard records has decided to launch it's own festival which it intends to hold in different locations around the globe as time goes on .
We are holding the inaugural Sometimes A Great Notion in Portland a city we think will soon sit on everybody's lips, as did Seattle just up the road, 20 years ago.
The festival feature cult headliners such as the Saints guitarist Ed Kuepper; Dennis Coffey the sound of 70's Blaxploitation movie soundtracks and new electronic dub heroes Peaking Lights . We're also featuring the best of Metal Postcard's artists from around the world and the new portland rock and electronica underground
Sometimes A Great Notion is excited to create an exchange partnership with Kabul based Sound Central Music Festival
05th Jun 2012
The Rock Center is open!!! We are happy to announce that in the first two weeks of operations we have over 15 students learning guitar, bass, drums, piano, voice and music theory.
31st May 2012
The team at SCF12 are proud to announce our first Rock Ambassador for 2012:
Alex Skolnik, the acclaimed guitarist from Testament!!!!
Alex Skolnick, born in 1968, grew up in Berkeley, California. At age nine, a fascination with the rock group Kiss led to a desire to learn guitar. At fourteen, he began lessons with a local teacher with a serious reputation - his name was Joe Satriani. At age sixteen, Alex tried out for a local band called Legacy. Shortly after graduating from high school, he found himself recording his first album with the group, who by this time had changed their name to Testament. What followed were five albums and countless tours with, among others, Megadeth, Slayer, Judas Priest, and White Zombie. Alex received critical acclaim for his lead guitar work, which had been inspired by heroes such as Eddie Van Halen and Randy Rhoads, ranking high in many guitar magazine polls, often as ‘Best Thrash Guitarist’ and ‘Most Underrated Guitarist.’ In 1988, while working on the second Testament album, nineteen year old Alex happened to capture one of Miles Davis’ guitar driven electric bands on television. This inspired an intense study of jazz, leading to, his eventual relocating to New York City, where he earned a BfA from New School University’s jazz program (class of 2001).
It was at the New School where Alex Skolnick Trio was born. AST bends the conviction of rock with the elegance and sophistication of jazz. Since their debut, AST has had an entire Jazz notes column in honored with 4 ½ stars by Downbeat, reviewed by Jazziz, The Village Voice and has charted on the JazzWeek radio charts. Fans of the group include international superstars Rodrigo & Gabriella, who chose the trio as their support act on tours throughout the US and Europe in 2010 (and recruited Alex as a guest on their hit album 11/11), Metallica’s Robert Trujillo, who joined the band for an impromptu jam at Radio City Music Hall. The trio’s 2011 album, Veritas, reached the Top Ten of the iTunes jazz charts, nestled in between Miles Davis and Esperanza Spalding, and was released via the highly respected jazz label, Palmetto Records.
In 2005, after a hiatus of more than a dozen years, Alex rejoined Testament and helped bring the band back to the forefront of metal. Their 2008 album, The Formation of Damnation, was released on Nuclear Blast Records to critical acclaim. It was named SiriusXM Liquid Metal's 'Album of the Year,’ Revolver ‘Golden God 'Album of the Year' and debuted at #59 on the Billboard Top 200 (Testament's highest charting release in their 24-year history). Tours with Slayer, Megadeth, Anthrax, Judas Priest, Heaven & Hell and Motorhead followed. A follow up album, ‘Dark Roots Of Earth’ will be released in 2012.
31st May 2012
They just keep coming! Here is a list of who wants to play.... The selection process is looking tough!
China: Paris
Algeria: Lelahell
Sri Lanka: Paranoid Earthling, DJ Asvajit
Kazakhstan: The NorD
Hungry: Dirty Slippers
Serbia: Sensitive Noise, Lorna Wing
Slovenia: Wrong Moose
Portugal: One Big Mob
Poland: Afekth
Italy: Roberta De Francia trio
Sweden: Eastwick
German / Gothe: Teichman Brothers
France: Woolabaech
UK / British Council: Tales Of George, Plastic Soul, Screaming Martini, Karl Phillips & The Midnight Ramblers, Beretta Suicide, Kissmet, Dead Silence, Secret Rivals, Million Faces
Scotland: Mercury Underground
US/Afghan: Fereshta, Ariana Delwari
US/Iran: Kiosk
Australia: Black Hills, Massa Cygnet, New Manic Spree, The Walking Sparrow
South Africa: Il Quinto
17th May 2012
Without any where near as much support as we had last year, SCF is trying to keep the small but volatile Kabul music scene alive. This month we had the pleasure of having founder Travis Beards brother; Jason here. The two teamed up with resident cello extraordinaire Robin at the Institute Francais Afghanistan. Check out the video here:
04th Mar 2012
The SCF12 machine is warming up mode as the ice thaws in Kabul. The cool thing is that we have had 26 bands apply!
Check em out:
Algeria: Lelahell
Sri Lanka: Paranoid Earthling, DJ Asvajit
Kazakhstan: The NorD
Hungry: Dirty Slippers
Poland: Afekth
Serbia: Sensitive Noise
Slovenia: Wrong Moose
Portugal: One Big Mob
Italy: Roberta De Francia trio
Sweden: Eastwick
German: Teichman Brothers
France: Woolabeach
UK: Tales Of George, Plastic Soul, Mercury Underground, Screaming Martini, Karl Phillips & The Midnight Ramblers, Beretta Suicide, Kissmet, Dead Silence
Australia: The Black Hills, Massa Cygnet, New Manic Spree
US/Afghan: Fereshta
US/Iran: Kiosk
If you like any of them, then let us know:
Bands keep the applications coming!
02nd Feb 2012
Check check check it out:
Thanks to Brian, Daniel and the Helo NYC Crew for putting this together.
02nd Feb 2012
SCF is planning to host an Event Tech Workshop in April and Sept this year.
We have several subjects that we will teach the Afghan students. For all subjects we have tutors, EXCEPT a lighting technician....
So if you are interested in sharing your knowledge and helping build an event industry in Afghanistan, then please send you CV to the following email address:
12th Jan 2012
0.28MB .docx
If you wana rock out with us at SCF 2012, please fill out this form and send it back to
We are now taking applications for bands to perform at SCF 2012.
Please find a doc and send it with your demo's/links to:
02nd Dec 2011
S.C.F is now in planning for 2012 and we are building a strong team of dedicated, self giving and rock loving people to help us make 2012 the biggest event on the Central Asian arts calendar.
Please fill out the attached doc and send it with your CVs to:
Turning it up @ Sound Central Festival, Kabul Afghanistan
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