Iranian Shooter Massacre ‘The Yellow Dogs’ Indie Rock Band In New York

Hm… sounds like a tall story: fellow musician massacre his band members for getting into trouble with them for stealing and selling their equipment? A search shows that Raefe Akhbar, the shooter, is not a band member like the article claims. The band had just recently been granted asylum. Iranian government tend to follow their people far beyond their homes country and spy on them. In an interview with the band from2011 they said, “No, it’s really dangerous [to play this music]. First of all, our space was in a really traditional neighbourhood, all the neighbours were really religious.” Their lyrics were “offensive” to the government.

Wonder what the real reason behind this mass murder could be. These musicians had just recently been granted asylum in the U.S. and wanted to tour the U.S., Europe, Israel and Asia.
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East Williamsburg gunman identified in quadruple murder-suicide reportedly surrounding indie band 

The victims were reportedly part of an Iranian indie rock band, The Yellow Dogs, which left the totalitarian state for Brooklyn. The conflict allegedly escalated after the gunman started selling off the musicians’ equipment.

By , AND / NEW YORK DAILY NEWS

Monday, November 11, 2013, 12:54 PM

Members of the band The Yellow Dogs left Iran where they were attracted too much heat for Brooklyn.

Danny Krug/Danny Krug

Members of the band The Yellow Dogs left Iran where they attracted too much heat from Islamist hardliners and decamped for Brooklyn.

The rock and roll dream of an indie band that fled repressive Iran became a bloody nightmare Monday when a gunman armed with a semi-automatic rifle invaded their Brooklyn crash pad and started shooting.

Three members of The Yellow Dogs were killed in their East Williamsburg digs by another indie musician from Iran who had a beef with the band, police said.

The gunman, tentatively identified as Raefe Akhbar, then went up to the roof, shoved the barrel of his .308-caliber rifle under his chin and killed himself with a single blast, sources said.

Early reports said the motive was because Akhbar was furious at being kicked out of the band after he was caught selling off their equipment.

Police investigate the scene after a bloody shooting spree just after midnight.Anthony DelMundo/New York Daily News: Police investigate the scene after a bloody shooting spree just after midnight.

But Bushwick music maven Danny Krug said while Akhbar played the bass – and had close ties to the band – he wasn’t a member of The Yellow Dogs.

“I never thought he was violent, but he was weird,” Krug said. “He didn’t seem to fit in with the rest of the guys. The Yellow Dogs were fun party guys, but he was not that. He was quiet.”

The dead were tentatively identified by police as: Soroush (Looloosh) Farazmand, 27, who played guitar; drummer Arash (Sina) Farazmand, no age available; and Ali Eskandarian, 35, the band’s singer.

Friend of the band Ali Eskandarian performs in 2008 at Joe's Pub's 10th Anniversary Gala and tribute to Judy Collins at the Public Theater in New York.Henny Ray Abrams/AP:  Friend of the band Ali Eskandarian performs in 2008 at Joe’s Pub’s 10th Anniversary Gala and tribute to Judy Collins at the Public Theater in New York.

A fourth man, 22-year-old Sasan Sadeghpourosko, was shot twice in his right arm and survived the massacre. He was listed in stable condition at Elmhurst Hospital.

It was not clear if Sadeghpourosko was in the band. And the names police released did not all match those that appear on the band recordings.

That lineup identifies the singer as dreadlock-wearing Siavash (Obash) Karampour.

Police say the gunman shot the men and then headed to the roof where he turned the .308-caliber rifle on himself.Anthony DelMundo/New York Daily News: Police say the gunman shot the men and then headed to the roof where he turned the .308-caliber rifle on himself.

The slaughter began shortly after midnight at 318 Maujer St.

The gunman had reached the building by hopping from roof to roof and then scaled down the side where he claimed his first victim by shooting him through the window, Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly said.

In the struggled that followed, the gunman’s magazine popped out but he still had enough ammo to kill the other men, Kelly said.

Police investigate a shooting involving members of an Iranian indie rock band, The Yellow Dogs, in East Williamsburg on Monday. Police said a gunman killed three bandmates before going to the roof and shooting himself. Anthony DelMundo/New York Daily News: Police investigate a shooting involving members of an Iranian indie rock band, The Yellow Dogs, in East Williamsburg on Monday. Police said a gunman killed three bandmates before going to the roof and shooting himself. 

Then the gunman fired at a man and woman – both members of the U.S. Coast Guard who were in New York City for Veterans Day events – who had locked themselves in another room.

Neither was hurt, Kelly said.

The gunman used a rifle that was purchased in 2006 somewhere in upstate New York, the commish added.

Soroush (l.) and Arash Farazmand (r.) of the band The Yellow Dogs were found dead Monday morning.Facebook: Soroush (l.) and Arash Farazmand (r.) of the band The Yellow Dogs were found dead Monday morning.

Police converged on the building after receiving reports of a man with a rifle. Once inside, they found a home transformed into a shooting gallery with shell casings everywhere, cops said.

On the second floor, Soroush Farazmand, was found lying face up, dead from a gunshot wound to the chest.

Arash Farazmand, who appears to be related to Farazmand, and Eskandarian were found dead on the third floor, both from gun blasts to the head.

The Yellow Dogs were formed in Tehran and, influenced by everyone from The Kinks to Joy Division, they rose to the top of the underground music scene in a country where the Muslim mullahs have condemned rock music.

Band members in an undated photo. Cops said a gunman shot and killed three others in an East Williamsburg building early Monday. Danny Krug:  Band members in an undated photo. Cops said a gunman shot and killed three others in an East Williamsburg building early Monday. 

The quartet was featured in a documentary about the Tehran scene called “No One Knows About Persian Cats” that went on to win a prize at the Cannes Film Festival in 2009. But that made Iran too hot for The Yellow Dogs, who fled to the U.S. and resettled in Brooklyn.

There the band thrived, landing gigs at hipster havens like The Knitting Factory in Williamsburg and the Bushwick venue Shea Stadium.

“You don’t feel like a foreigner in New York City at all,” lead singer Obash said in April 2012 interview.

Police converged on the East Williamsburg building after receiving reports of a man with a firearm.Anthony DelMundo/New York Daily News: Police converged on the East Williamsburg building after receiving reports of a man with a firearm.

Martin Greenman, 63, who works around the corner at 406 Maujer St., said he’d seen the band members as recently as Friday.

“I see them almost every day,” Greenman said. “It’s just unbelievable. To see somebody on Friday and on Monday you’re telling me there dead.”

“They seem like really nice guys,” he added. “They didn’t seem to be in anyway to be violent guys. They weren’t rabble rousers or anything like that.”

With Ryan Sit, Joe Kemp, Chelsea Rose Marcius and Thomas Tracy

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