In 2008 an intiative of musicians called zero dB formed as protest against the use of music as sonic torture in Guantanamo Bay. Many musicians were upset about the fact that their music was played blaringly loud at detainees in freezing cold rooms as interrogation tactics. In this video filmed inside Cambridge University’s anechoic chamber, former Guantanamo Bay detainee Ruhal Ahmed speaks about his experiences being interrogated and subjected to high-volume music. His testimonial is cut against typical sound art icons like vibrating chladni plates and loudspeakers placed horizontally to move fluids while a narrator reflects on the acoustics and physics behind the loudness tolerance of the human ear. Excerpts of Massive Attacks beautiful “Saturday Come Slow” sung by Damon Albarn is interwoven in this remarkable video shot by Adam Broomberg and Oliver Chanarin. For more advanced reading about sonic torture there is this article written by Suzanna G. Cusick and a book by Steve Goodman (a.k.a. Kode9) called Sonic Warfare (in his blog there are more findings related to the same subject).
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