Sometimes an artists takes it upon themselves to give voice to the voiceless. Those without a voice are sometimes furry, sometimes not, sometimes on four legs, and sometimes not.
Sometimes, a whole group of artists come together to collectively lend their voices to those who have none. Flaex and Flo Hillen have made such a tour in the new year and its something you don’t want to miss if you like great music and animal rights activism.
Dogs. They are incredible creatures. All animals are fascinating but personally I have a deep connection with dogs. I have two dogs in my life. One has been my best friend for almost 13 years. His name is Prestur and he used to be a tour guide in an Icelandic lava cave and a welcome host at an artist residency in the highlands of Iceland. He has lived a full life and made tons of friends, from around the world, both human and canine.
The other one is Atlas, a Border Collie and Boxer mix, who came into my life 6 years ago. My partner and I found him in Iceland when a woman with three ‘accident’ puppies was about to give them away or take them to be euthanized.
These two creatures are now nomad dogs. In April 2018 we set off in our jeep with all our most important things and set course for Europe. During our travels we always contact dog shelters and spend a good time of every week volunteering and helping out.
It’s been a year and a half now and we have all seen unbelievable nature, stunning structures and met wonderful people. We have also seen the lack of care and empathy for domestic animals and in many places it is a grave problem. I recommend to anyone who feels love for animals to help out at animal shelters. The connection felt and the unconditional love received is beyond words.
I figured it seemed only right on World Animal Day to share some of the animal rights albums I have found as well as three dog shelters in Europe that I have worked with.
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3 ANIMAL RIGHTS ALBUMS
Let’s Talk ABOUT IT by IFEEL
IFEEL could possibly be the most empathetic rapper coming out of Croatia these days. In an interview with Shouts he explained his mission:
“I tell stories about animals’ lives. A lot of songs are from animals’ point of view, because they cannot talk and tell us how they feel. We have all been cleverly and systematically lied to and desensitized to ignore violence around us. My mission is to bring this to light and inspire people to have a better life and help animals have better lives. I do this with music and activism.”
WE.ANIMALS. by ANIIML
This concept album is a rare gem in the animal rights music genre. More commonly one finds punk and hardcore bands protesting through their music. ANIIML’s electro pop is an extremely fresh breath of air. Although not as literal as some other protest music ANIIML makes it clear from the start that this album is all about the earth, its creatures and her plea for a better harmony between us all.
FIGHT/RESIST by Wake of Humanity
The heaviest band on this short list comes out of Seattle, USA. This young band states that they exist “For the animals. For the environment. For human justice.” and from there the blast begins. This is proper, straight edge, vegan hardcore.
3 DOG SHELTERS WE RECOMMEND
The Souda Shelter Project is a very well maintained and organized animal shelter on the Island of Crete. The knowledge and ideas some of the residents of this stunning island have of animal welfare is extremely old school and broken and tossed puppies and poison on the street is a regular thing.
This shelter in Bulgaria exists under tremendously difficult situations. The country is the poorest within the EU, in last place regarding press freedom and absolutely full of stray dogs and misinformed people.
Spain might be more well known for its ignorant torture of bulls but there are quite a few strays on its streets as well. This shelter is one of many shelters working to fight that ignorance and help both dogs and cats.
Halldór is the managing editor of Shouts – Music from the Rooftops!, an investigative journalist, audio engineer and an animal rights activist on a nomad journey through Europe – still without a definite destination.
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