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Montreal black metal fest canceled after Antifa riots

Posted by on November 29, 2016

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Photo: Montreal Gazette

Another weekend, another metal festival canceled following a demonstration. This past weekend black metal fans from around the world traveled to Montreal for the Messe Des Merts festival. One of the headliners, however, was Graveleand, whose vocalist, Robert “Rob Darken” Fudali considers himself a National Socialist (aka a neo-Nazi). Darken has said that Graveland itself is not an NSBM band, and while the Polish band, who have been around since 1991, have song titles like “White Hands Power,” they’ve moved away from lyrical content like that in recent years, and haven’t played those songs likve. That’s not to discount Darken’s personal beliefs, and we’re certainly not sticking up for them. However, a group of about 30 anti-fascist demonstraters (aka antifa), showed up and resulted in the festival being cancelled. They’d sent an email to fest organizers promising that they’d be protesting, according to the Montreal Gazette

“A band with racist and anti-Semitic ideas has no place in Montreal,” wrote Karine Fortier in the alert. “Montreal must remain a safe place for everyone and where racist people who think they have an opening to express their discriminatory ideas must meet with resistance.”

Among those there to support the protesters was Alexandre Boulerice, federal MP for the New Democratic Party. While there weren’t that many protesters, they clashed with police, and smoke bombs were thrown. It’s alleged that some of the antifa were attacking fans leaving the festival, who left in peace. It’s unfortunate that the organizers had to pull the plug, and ironic that the protesters were the ones that incited violence. There are certainly ways to peacefully protest, as we’ve been seeing this past month. And as noble as antifa’s anti-fascist/anti-racist etc., ideas are, they’ve protested violently in the past as well. We’ll be following this up with some reports from show attendees. Here’s a short video of the protest:

[via Metal Injection]

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Categorised in: Cancellations, Festivals, News