Skip to main content

Massive Attack cancel Liverpool gig in protest of weapons fair in venue

The concert was due to be a trial event to allow the group to test methodologies to reduce their carbon footprint when playing live

Massive Attack has cancelled a gig at ACC Liverpool to protest an electronic arms fair, which is also being held at the venue.

The concert had been due to go ahead as a 'super-low carbon' event in order to allow the group to trial methodologies that would allow themselves and others to play environmentally friendly gigs, with help from researchers at the University of Manchester.

"The one-off testbed show planned for Liverpool involved design, planning and relationship building on a scale that dwarfs any conventional tour, so it's really disappointing that for reasons way beyond our control we can't pull it off," said Robert "3D" Del Naja. "But showing solidarity with the people of Liverpool at this crucial moment supersedes that."

While opposing the arms fair, Massive Attack also expressed solidarity with the group Liverpool Against The Arms Fair, which organised a demonstration that took place on Saturday, 11th September at Liverpool Metropolitan Cathedral.

"We can rearrange a testbed show, but applying a wider focus, I can't imagine a more graphic example of the psychosis of the systems we live by than what’s playing out in Liverpool," Del Naja added.

"On the eve of a global event that's totally critical if we're to avoid a catastrophic extinction event, arms barons are shop-windowing technologies that inevitably harm and incarcerate people; often in the hands of states already acknowledged to be human rights violators.

"The International Red Cross says that the impacts of climate emergency seriously increase the risks of armed conflict, by exacerbating existing social, economic and environmental factors. In what world is that an 'opportunity' worth promoting? As artists, we cannot travel along with that."

Earlier this month, Massive Attack called on the UK Government and music industry bodies to come together to do more to help reduce the carbon footprint of live music and touring.