Believe it or not, Ai Weiwei’s set to release an album – of heavy metal music no less. The idea came to the artist during his detention in 2011 when bored prison guards would ask him to sing songs. “I felt so sad I couldn’t sing any except the revolutionary ones we had to learn when we were growing up” he said. “After I came out, I realised I had never really listened to music or sung, so I decided to make an album”.
Weiwei has collaborated with his rock musician friend Zuoxiao Zuzhou (who was briefly questioned during the artist’s detention) and contributes lyrics and vocals to the as yet untitled album. Needless to say he’s designing the cover art too. The 9 track LP is currently being mixed and Weiwei is seeking advice from his good pal Elton John on how best to distribute it. And what do the songs themselves sound like? Weiwei says; “Some are like heavy metal, some are more punkish, and some are more pop.” He’s even started working on a second album as well, an altogether ‘softer’ affair involving a suite love songs.