Outing Iran: Hypernova

Wikipedia says:

Hypernova is an Iranian indie-rock band based in Tehran. Like many other Iranian rock bands, the group was formed in the wake of president Khatami's relaxed stance on cultural policies in Iran in the late 1990s. [...P]laying rock music is dubbed as illegal and may lead to arrest, large fines, and even a public flogging, following Ahmadinejad's ban of all Western music from state-run airwaves in December 2005 in a reversal of reforms made under his more liberal predecessor.

When the band was asked why their songs are in English as opposed to Farsi, they said that the Persian (Farsi) is a really poetic and harmonious language, but not one well-suited to the harsh and really energetic rock sound.

EW.com wrote:

Hypernova blends the gothic sensibilities of Editors and Interpol with the hipster dance-pep of Franz Ferdinand, and the band's deep-voiced lead singer Raam recalls Ian Curtis of Joy Division. (Side note: Raam's a badass name, but it's not his real one. In fact, each member of the group abbreviates their name to avoid harmful/unwanted attention in their home city, Tehran.)

While none of their music is available on iTunes, a fair chunk of the band's 2008 debut, Through the Chaos, can be streamed on MySpace.

Wired interviewed Hypernova last fall. Money quote:

It’s not easy getting visas to the United States when you’re from the Axis of Evil.

And Reuters has a great video profile, after the jump: