Melb Band Kicked Off M83 Tour: ‘It Was Humiliating And Unfair’
News posted Tuesday, February 7 2012 at 04:00 PM.
Related: Teenage Mothers, M83.
Melbourne rock band Teenage Mothers have hit back at M83 after being unceremoniously dumped as support for their tour.
The band, who have been recording their debut album with Bad Seeds drummer Jim Sclavunos, were set to play three dates in Melbourne and Sydney with the French electro outfit. However, the tour has been cut short following an incident at the first show at Melbourne’s Prince Bandroom on February 2.
Guitarist Raph Brous claims the band’s management were unhappy with the antics of lead singer James “JK” Kennedy who, among other things, inhaled nitrous oxide in the form of over-the-counter bulbs during the gig. There were also reports of an on-stage fire ignited by an errant sparkler, but it was put out and the show continued.
Brous said M83 frontman Anthony Gonzalez and management were made aware of Kennedy’s preference for inhalants (which he says are legal) prior to the show, but booted them off the tour during soundcheck the following afternoon.
“Thirty minutes before our set, we were suddenly kicked off the entire tour,” Brous told M+N. “Under orders from M83’s tour managers, the venue staff literally pushed us onto the street. Our guest list was cancelled and our friends were kicked out too (some of them had travelled a long way to the gig). Security guards barred us from entering the building. It cost us hundreds of dollars. It was humiliating and unfair.”
He said M83’s tour manager branded Kennedy’s conduct as “disrespectful”, while Gonzalez allegedly labeled Kennedy a “junkie”; a claim Brous flatly denies. "James Kennedy is not a heroin addict. He has never been a heroin addict. He’s a fit young man. How many junkies can do backflips off a stage?” he said. “Anthony Gonzalez makes stupid assumptions based on appearances. In his arrogant bubble, individuality is condemned as ‘disrespect’.”
Brous said attempts at a compromise were denied. “I promised that in Sydney, JK would not bring any nitrous oxide onstage. But that wasn’t enough for M83. They wanted to punish us. So M83 kicked us off the Sydney show too. They knowingly made us waste 10 airline tickets (return airfares for five people). We had been advertised on the Laneway Festival website and streetpress. A lot of people were expecting to see us.”
As for why he decided to take the incident public, Brous said he wanted to expose what he terms “abusive conduct” from M83’s tour manager and Gonzalez himself. “I truly respected Anthony Gonzalez,” he said. “M83 should have chosen a boring DJ as their support. Playing with them is our worst experience as a band.”
M83’s tour continues in Sydney on Thursday (February 9). M83's tour manager has declined to comment.
To read Brous’ full account of the incident click here. The post has been temporarily removed.