Blackbraid Say They Were Racially Targeted Last Weekend When They Were Ejected from Midgardsblot
Some major drama unfolded during this year’s Midgardsblot Festival in Norway, as an altercation between Native American black metal outfit Blackbraid and festival security resulted in the band’s expulsion from the event.
According to Midgardblot Festival representatives, the band were kicked out of the event for allegedly being way too drunk and causing problems. However, shortly after being removed from the premises, band leader Sgah’gahsowáh took to social media to blast organizers by suggesting they were treated that way because of their race.
“We have been asked to leave @midgardsblot early because of the color of our skin. I am so sorry to the fans that came here to see us. I was really looking forward to playing a flute set at the bonfire tonight. I have been forced to cancel it unfortunately. I hope our fans can understand. Thank you to everyone that came here to see us from the bottom of my heart. I wish the staff here shared the same values as the beautiful people that have attended the festival. I promise we will return to Norway one day, to a festival that can appreciate blackbraid for our true worth, regardless of our nationality. We shall return.”
Such a charge against event organizers is a big deal and somewhat confusing, considering if they had a problem with an indigenous black metal band on racial grounds, you’d think they wouldn’t book Blackbraid in the first place. Still, it’s important to recognize that any perceived slights are still valid concerns to bring up so that sort of shit doesn’t happen in the future.
As it turns out, however, cooler heads ended up prevailing as Sgah’gahsowáh issued another statement the following day. And while he toned down his rhetoric a bit, blaming the incident on “some unfortunate miscommunication,” he remained firm that he and his bandmates experienced “continious negative interactions with both the security and a handful of festival goers.” That all boiled over, he said, to the point where tempers flared and they were told to leave the concert.
“Regarding the situation at Midgardsblot last evening.
Unfortunately there was some unfortunate miscommunication between the festival organizers at the security regarding the actions of one of our band members, whom momentarily laid down in a sitting area.
While the festival organizers of Midgardsblot were helpful in handling this situation peacefully at first, unfortunately the company handling the security re-escaled [SIC] the situation a couple of hours later in the evening and this is when the band was officially removed from the festival.
While were originally informed following the initial incident that we could overlook the situation and that the band was still welcome at MgB; this sentiment was seemingly not communicated to the security staff elsewhere in the festival.
It was also at this time that the other native members of the group who were unaware of the situation were being told they need to leave by security as well. At multiple times yesterday, security was not able to the difference between the native band members, leading to further confusion and misunderstanding both sides.
While we have wanted to give the benefit of the doubt in terms of racism, we have unfortunately had continious negative interactions with both the security and a handful of festival goers. The anger which negatively impacted our actions in the moment of this altercation was fueled by many different interactions which finally got a tipping point here.
The situation was handled poorly on all sides.
I apologize for my behavior in the situation, especially the spitting situation, and to the fans who have been upset by the situation, and to the festival staff who tried to handle the situation with security before it got out of hand. I was livid with the treatment we were receiving, and did not handle myself in a responsible way whatsoever. I let my anger get the best of me and my actions were out of line. We are grateful for any opportunity to play in Norway and hope to return one day under different circumstances.”