Manic Street Preachers and Fun-Da-Mental have publicly condemned Blaggers ITA following last week's Maker story detailing how their singer Matty and other members of the band set upon and beat up Maker journalist Dave Simpson two weeks ago. Simpson, who was left with a broken bone beneath his eye and severe haemorrhaging following the unprovoked attack, was still receiving medical attention this week. He has reported the matter to the police who are expected to open investigations.
Fun-Da-Mental have cancelled their planned gig with the Blaggers at Mansfield Town Hall on August 21. A spokeswoman told The Maker on behalf of the band: "Due to the unprovoked attack by Blaggers ITA, which is totally unjustified, we feel we cannot share the same stage with this band. Dave is harmless, two inches tall and four foot wide. If the attack, made by Blaggers personnel, was made on a racist organisation, we would applaud it, but it wasn't. It was a difference of opinion between Dave and Blaggers and the reaction of Matty was deplorable. We, as Fun-Da-Mental, have to justify ourselves and our actions to journalists, media people etc: We as a band, and as human beings, have to put up with aspects of everyday life and we would not, and could not, physically attack people because our opinions differ."
Manic Street Preachers, who were headlining the Blaggers/Credit To The Nation show the night of the attack, echoed Fun-Da-Mental's sentiments.
James Dean Bradfield told The Maker: "I just don't believe in bullying, full stop. I don't agree with their means to an end at all. I didn't know the extent of what had happened until the morning after, and I said, 'I disagree with what you do, and I don't believe in bullying.' No matter what they think, this is a different kind of fascism. I've been a connoisseur of violence in my younger days, and I know that if I had indulged in it much more than I did, I would get to enjoy it. I don't think it's a bad thing to admit. I think an intelligent person steps back from something he can potentially enjoy doing. It's that foresight that a group like that needs to learn."
"In the end, this is the worst thing they could have done. It's probably the single biggest mistake they'll ever make.
The Manics' Nicky Wire added: "There's nothing good or brave about violence. It's sad. We use violence with our words, which is the best way. We could get really wound up with reviews that we've had, like that one by Chris Roberts - but at the end of the day it doesn't bother us."
As The Maker went to press, we were contacted by a spokesman for Blaggers ITA's record company, Parlophone. The spokesman read out a carefully worded statement. It read: "While Blaggers ITA can make no specific comment at the moment due to possible legalities, singer Matty would like it known that he strongly disagrees with the events as described in Melody Maker last week and will prepare a statement in response after legal advice."
Manic Street Preachers release a single from their 'Gold Against The Soul' album next week. It's 'La Tristesse Durera' and it's backed by the much talked about 'Patrick Bateman'. Bateman is based on the central character in Brett Easton-Ellis' book 'American Psycho. The single also features two live tracks: 'Slash 'N' Burn' and a version of The Clash's 'What's My Name'.