Justin Broadrick Explains Reasons Behind Godflesh U.S. Tour Cancellation (and It Rhymes with Government Buttdown)
Major boners were deflated when last week’s news broke that the entire Godflesh U.S. tour was likely coming down on account of — what else — visa problems. But don’t put this one on Justin Broadrick, whose past skittishness and publicly stated distaste for long tours has fans jumping on his back: this one’s all on — who else — the U.S. government. Professional visa agents and lawyers were hired well in advance but our dumb government still couldn’t push it all through the bureaucracy in a timely manner, and, this next part is not confirmed, but the current government shutdown might have something to do with it.
Here’s Broadrick’s official statement on the matter:
Unfortunately we have to now officially announce that the GODFLESH mini tour of the US is now postponed, the rescheduled dates will be announced shortly, the dates will now be in April 2014, we cannot yet confirm if tickets can be retained for the new dates, but we have information that this is in the process, the venues are the same besides one show, this will be confirmed over the next few days, we also hope to have exactly the same roster of supports – Prurient, Nails, and House Of Low Culture.
The reason for all this is once again visa issues; as is often the case with UK and European artists wishing to work/perform in the US, it is a laborious process, and it was stalled by the US immigration office, the USCIS, that reviews and processes these visas. Clearly, and before the accusations come in, and I have already been made aware of several kneejerk reactions to this news, we, as a band, are not at the helm of this process – we have an reputable and professional agency in the US that worked this tour, and an US based legal team who work on achieving the visas, in tandem with our agency, all done within an extended timeframe which allows for any such problems, the issue here is quite simply that the USCIS stopped responding entirely to our legal team, regardless of how much our team relentlessly taxed the body for the petition/visa response, no response was forthcoming, irrespective of all efforts; the process had ground to a halt – they would not respond to us at all anymore, we had reports that the US govt. closedown was the final nail, but this is unconfirmed. So, once again, we are now going through the process, with even more time at our legal teams disposal to go through this all again and hope for the best.
Please, understand this – it’s bureaucracy to blame here, not the band or it’s agent / legal team, we all wish for the band to perform, otherwise why indeed would we even bother to invest time, energy and money into establishing this tour? Nor is it related to the ridiculous suggestion/assumption of my not wanting to tour; I do not wish to do large extended tours, I already am, and have been doing small tours, this was a small tour; Godflesh did a small tour of Europe earlier this year, and we, and I, have performed consistently throughout the world this year, I, as both jesu, Godflesh andJK Flesh have performed twice in Moscow in the last six weeks, for example, besides countless other performances in many countries globally. So, please do not be ignorant and narrow minded about this situation, and understand that we obviously want to perform, and will perform. We will announce the new dates within the next few days, the tour will be followed by the new GODFLESH album in May 2014. Thank You.
Big bummer, but Broadrick certainly seems genuine in his desire to make good on the band’s U.S. touring commitment. Stay tuned for those April 2014 dates when our government can get its act together (lol as if).