Artist Ai Weiwei to release heavy metal album

The artist will be asking Elton John for his opinion on the record

The artist Ai Weiwei is set to release a heavy metal album.

The Chinese installation artist and sculptor has collaborated on the nine track LP with rock musician and friend Zuoxiao Zuzhou, writes The Guardian.

Ai Weiwei sings on the tracks and also wrote the lyrics. He has said of the content of the record: “Some are like heavy metal, some are more punkish, and some are more pop.”

He went on to explain that he became interested in music during his 81-day long government detention in 2011, saying: “To tell you the truth, I never listened to music. Then, during my detention, the guards were so bored they kept saying to me, ‘Can you sing a song?’ I felt so sad I couldn’t sing any except the revolutionary ones we had to learn when we were growing up … It would have made the time seem much shorter.”

He continued: “After I came out, I realised I had never really listened to music or sung, so I decided to make an album. I know so many artists and musicians and they were really supportive.”

Ai Weiwei has said that he will be sending his album to Elton John – who last year dedicated a concert in Beijing to the artist. “I was impressed by his very warm heart and passion and the expression of the music, so that gave me a clear push for making my own album. I will send it to him and ask his opinion. I haven’t asked him for advice – I will surprise him.”

Ai Weiwei is already working on his debut album’s follow-up. “It’s more like love songs; it will be softer than the first. There’s no heavy metal on that one.”