Written by James Arnold-Garvey on 22nd February, 2014
Australian deathcore act Thy Art Is Murder have been kicked off this year’s Soundwave tour and labelled “disrespectful arseholes” by festival promoter AJ Maddah after encouraging punters to rush the stage and attack security personnel at the festival’s Brisbane leg.
Maddah announced his decision to boot the band, who hail from Blacktown, NSW, via Twitter. According to him, the band told the crowd, “There are thousand of you and dozens of security. Smash them. All of you get on the stage.” A security guard working the stage told Music Feeds photographer Rebecca Reid that the band also announced, “We wanna see someone put in hospital.”
According to Music Feeds contributor Shanahan Flanders, after the directive, up to 100 people rushed the stage in the crescendo to what he describes as one of the rowdiest sets he’s ever experienced. “They basically said, ‘Fuck security, get up here.’ … [Organisers] cut their sound right at the very end of the set, for about 20 seconds,” he elaborates.
Maddah claimed that the stage-rush threatened the continuation of the Brisbane event. “We nearly had police cancel the show,” he stated, saying that after the event security wanted to leave which would have forced police to shut down the show.
Addressing the band, Maddah also said they risked the “lives of my staff, the police, security and injuring your own fans”. Despite being “angry”, Maddah said he is “really bummed” about the band’s behaviour.
“That is why we do not have many Australian bands on Soundwave. Disrespectful arseholes,” the promoter stated in the early stages of the aftermath. The festival has long been criticized for preferring to book international artists over local acts on the tour.
“Soundwave is an international festival. We book international bands,” the promoter told Andrew Haug Radio last year. “What happened during the early days of Soundwave is that we did put on a lot of Australian bands and we ended up paying a price because a lot of those guys thought, “This is our chance to party”, rather than treating it professionally.”