Tonight’s (7th) Watain show in Singapore has been cancelled by the Infocomm Media Development Authority (IMDA) due to “security concerns” raised by the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA). Channel News Asia has reported a statement by IMDA was made on Thursday afternoon to allow the concert with a restricted 18+ entry originally scheduled to be held at EBX Live Space at Pereira Road.
IMDA’s initial statement addressed the following restrictions from the Swedish black metal band:
“Given the band’s history, IMDA imposed further stringent requirements including the removal of songs which are religiously offensive, that the band cannot make references to religion or use religious symbols and that no ritualistic acts are performed on stage.”
An online petition was launched to “Ban satanic music groups Watain and Soilwork performing in Singapore.” This Change.org campaign has over 17,000 people that signed to warn the “Ministry of Culture, Community, and Youth,” of Watain’s show as the MHA has taken action to make sure the show would be called off.
IMDA later issued the following statement on cancelling the show:
“MHA has expressed serious concerns about the concert, given the band’s history of denigrating religions and promoting violence, which has potential to cause enmity and disrupt Singapore’s social harmony. Watain is known for its Satanist views and some of their previous controversial performances involved animal carcasses and throwing pig’s blood on its audience. The band also espouses anti-Christian views and advocates Satanism through their songs and endorses violence. MHA has therefore asked IMDA to consider cancelling the concert for reasons of public order, and IMDA has agreed.”
For those who are curious, The Change.org campaign described Watain as:
“These heavy metal bands do not represent the culture which we want in our youths. Their subliminal messages in their songs include death and suicide. Sign this petition to get our lawmakers to ban these bands from performing in Singapore. “
As the event has officially been cancelled, fans have mentioned there will be a meet and greet.
Meanwhile, the campaign is still fighting against Soilwork’s scheduled performance scheduled for October at the same venue.
Fans have expressed their disappointment to Channel News Asia as they feel they’ve been stabbed in the back:
“We are just disappointed, that’s it … Their music changed my life. I wake up in the morning and I have new spirit for working,” he said. “It’s like somebody stabbed me in the back.”
Watain’s new album Trident Wolf Eclipse was released last year and we thought it was one of the best records of 2018. We’ve also seen them live a few times as they deliver unforgettable performances. As far as Soilwork is concerned, we enjoyed their new album, Verkligheten and loved seeing them perform with Fear Factory back in 2016.