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'Sounds of Silence': Rocking Out in Iran

Culturally, the Western world sees Iran as cloaked in black robes and turbans, a nation repressed by conservative mullahs and ideologically pristine.

Behind the image is a stark reality -- more than 65 percent of the nation's population is 25 years old or younger, and there is a youth culture eager to break free.

Filmmakers Amir Hamz and Mark Lazarz capture that restless spirit in a new documentary titled Sounds of Silence. The film profiles a generation of artists who are creating and distributing new music behind the back of the Islamic republic.

Unlike the traditional music approved by religious censors, these musicians choose to rock -- and even rap -- all the while, dodging the authorities.

And the music they create finds unlikely inspiration from the Koran and revered mystical poets and philosophers from Persia's golden age.

Copyright 2022 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

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