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catch viral Mongolian folk metal band The Hu on N.A. tour, including Riot Fest

The Hu
photo by E. Altankhuyag

Are you familiar with Mongolian folk-metal band The Hu? If you aren’t, you may be surprised at how many people are. Articles about them have headlines like NPR’s “How A Mongolian Heavy Metal Band Got Millions Of YouTube Views” and Vice’s “This Insanely Popular Mongolian Metal Band Makes Music Using Traditional Instruments,” and, via that Vice article, here are some of the things that people are saying:

“I never knew I needed Mongolia folk metal in my life, until now.”

Another comment echoed the same sentiment: “Yuve Yuve Yu is the best random YouTube suggestion I have gotten in the last few months.”

And still another user: “In a world full of Taylor Swifts. Be a Mongolian Metal Band.”

The comments sections on the Yuve Yuve Yu music video on YouTube are a stream of positive responses. As of publication time, the video has garnered almost 17 million hits in just 8 months, since it was published in September 2018.

NPR interviewed members of the band, and here’s some more background on them from that article:

The Hu call their style “hunnu rock” — from the Mongolian root word for human being: “hu.” The band spent seven years putting together its first album, which it expects to release this spring. They plan to call it Gereg, the name for a diplomatic passport used during the time of Genghis Khan. For the album, the idea was to find, study and incorporate as much of Mongolia’s musical culture as they could into a rock style, says the band’s 52-year-old producer and songwriter, B. Dashdondog, who goes by “Dashka.”

Mongolian musical culture is tied up with their pastoral way of life. The two-stringed horsehead fiddle is shaped to resemble a horse and includes the carving of a horse head and strings and bow made of horsehair. It produces a sound similar to a violin and can be used to imitate the sound of a herd of horses. In throat singing, associated with pastoral herders in Central Asia, the singer produces a low constant sort of drone at the same time as a series of higher tones.

“We wanted to come up with our own thing that we can offer to this big music family. Make something new,” says Dashka, who spoke through a translator via Skype.

That debut album, The Gereg, gets released this Friday (9/13) via Eleven Seven, and it includes viral singles “Yuve Yuve Yu” and “Wolf Totem,” along with the more recently released singles “Shoog Shoog” and “The Great Chinggis Khaan,” the former of which has already passed a million views in the three weeks the video has been up and the latter of which is almost there too.

The Hu are beginning their first-ever North American headlining tour tonight in Minneapolis (9/11), and then hitting Chicago’s Riot Fest this Saturday (9/14). They’re first up on the Riot Stage’s all-metal Saturday lineup which also includes legendary bands GWAR, Testament, Anthrax (playing an all fan-request set), and Slayer (final Chicago/Milwaukee show). If you’re going to Riot Fest for those four bands, it’s very worth getting there early to see The Hu at 1:05 PM too.

After Riot, The Hu’s tour continues and hits Brooklyn’s Warsaw on September 24 (tickets) and Asbury Park’s Stone Pony on September 27 (tickets). They also return to NYC to play Bowery Ballroom on November 17 (tickets). They have dates in several other cities too, all of which are listed below.

Their Seattle and Portland shows are with Babymetal, whose upcoming NYC show we’re giving away tickets to.

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The Hu — 2019 Tour Dates
Wednesday, September 11, 2019 Minneapolis, MN Fine Line Music Café
Friday, September 13, 2019 Milwaukee, WI The Rave
Saturday, September 14, 2019 Chicago, IL Riot Fest
Sunday, September 15, 2019 Detroit, MI El Club
Tuesday, September 17, 2019 Cleveland, OH Grog Shop
Wednesday, September 18, 2019 Toronto, ON TheOpera House
Thursday, September 19, 2019 Montreal, QC L’Astral
Saturday, September 21, 2019 Quebec City, QC Le D’Auteuil
Monday, September 23, 2019 Boston, MA Paradise Rock Club
Tuesday, September 24, 2019 Brooklyn, NY Warsaw
Thursday, September 26, 2019 Washington, DC Black Cat
Friday, September 27, 2019 Asbury Park, NJ TheStone Pony
Saturday, September 28, 2019 Baltimore, MD Baltimore Soundstage
Wednesday, October 2, 2019 Salt Lake City, UT The Complex -TheGrand
Thursday, October 3, 2019 Denver, CO Oriental Theater
Saturday, October 5, 2019 Santa Fe, NM Armory for the Arts
Tuesday, October 8, 2019 Phoenix, AZ Crescent Ballroom
Thursday, October 10, 2019 San Diego, CA TheObservatory North Park
Friday, October 11, 2019 Joshua Tree, CA Joshua Tree Music Festival
Saturday, October 12, 2019 Los Angeles, CA Teragram
Sunday, October 13, 2019 Sacramento, CA Aftershock
Tuesday, October 15, 2019 Portland, OR Roseland Theater
Wednesday, October 16, 2019 Seattle, WA Paramount Theatre
Saturday, October 19, 2019 Las Vegas, NV Las Rageous Rock Festival
Monday, October 21, 2019 El Paso, TX Lowbrow Palace
Tuesday, October 22, 2019 San Antonio, TX Paper Tiger
Thursday, October 24, 2019 Dallas, TX Trees
Friday, October 25, 2019 Houston, TX Warehouse Live
Sunday, October 27, 2019 Austin, TX Emo’s
Monday, October 28, 2019 Fort Smith, AK Temple Live
Tuesday, October 29, 2019 Lawrence, KS Granada Theater
Wednesday, October 30, 2019 St Louis, MO Firebird
Saturday, November 2, 2019 Nashville, TN Exit/In
Sunday, November 3, 2019 Atlanta, GA Terminal West
Tuesday, November 5, 2019 Orlando, FL TheSocial
Wednesday, November 6, 2019 Fort Lauderdale, FL Culture Room
Thursday, November 7, 2019 Tampa, FL The Orpheum
Sunday, November 10, 2019 Charlotte, NC The Underground
Monday, November 11, 2019 Richmond, VA Broadberry
Wednesday, November 13, 2019 Philadelphia, PA Theatre of Living Arts
Sunday, November 17, 2019 New York, NY Bowery Ballroom
Monday, November 18, 2019 Pittsburgh, PA Mr. Small’s Theatre
Tuesday, November 19, 2019 Columbus, OH TheBasement
Thursday, November 21, 2019 Cincinnati, OH Taft Theatre
Friday, November 22, 2019 Louisville, KY Zanzabar
Saturday, November 23, 2019 Indianapolis, IN Hi-Fi Indy
Monday, November 25, 2019 Des Moines, IA Wooly’s
Tuesday, November 26, 2019 Omaha, NE The Waiting Room Lounge
Wednesday, November 27, 2019 Colorado Springs, CO Black Sheep
Sunday, December 1, 2019 San Francisco, CA Independent
Monday, December 2, 2019 San Jose, CA The Ritz
Wednesday, December 4, 2019 Ventura, CA The Majestic Ventura Theatre
Thursday, December 5, 2019 Santa Ana, CA The Observatory OC
Friday, December 6, 2019 Pomona, CA Glass House
Saturday, December 7, 2019 Las Vegas, NV Brooklyn Bowl

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