Slovenian band Laibach play in Pyongyang as the first western band performing in North Korea. Rollo Ross reports.
Slovenian rockers Laibach may have had some success in Europe, but now the band have branched out further and become the first ever Western rock band to play in the secretive state of North Korea. The country's news agency KNCA released footage of the band performing at the Ponghwa Art Theatre in Pynongyang to an audience of North Koreans experiencing live European rock for the first time. They first announced their plans back in July, with band member Ivan Novak saying that it was proof that the isolated state is changing. SOUNDBITE Laibach band member, Ivan Novak, saying (English): "The result of getting Laibach into North Korea is basically one of those, one of those showmarks that they are actually opening." The band, who have played down accusations of being both far left and far right politically, admit that they do have their own reasons for performing. SOUNDBITE Laibach band member, Ivan Novak, saying (English): "We do go to North Korea also to support their idea of unification with South Korea, so unification of the Korean peninsula, that's a on symbolic level. We also don't go to North Korea to provoke North Koreans and North Korean authorities, we are actually going there to provoke everybody outside (of) North Korea." Laibach were playing two concerts in North Korea, which they called their 'Liberation Day Tour' - marking the 70th anniversary of the Korean peninsula's liberation from Japanese colonisation and subsequent division into two enemy states. Whether their performance created better bonds between North Korea and Europe remains to be seen.