Oakland, Calif., headbangers Machine Head are raging against their own machine these days — Disney.
The Mouse started the fight when it put the kabosh on the first night of the group’s Black Tyranny Tour from the House of Blues site at Disneyland in Anaheim, Calif., at the last minute — part of a blanket ban of all heavy metal shows at the venue. A subsequent show was similarly called off at the Disney World House of Blues in Orlando, Fla. — possibly as retaliation for the group’s public complaints about what happened in Anaheim.
“We’re all pretty shocked, really, about everything,” says Machine Head frontman Robb Flynn. “The most disturbing thing to me is this wasn’t a House of Blues decision. It wasn’t a promoter decision. This was the property owner’s decision, people ... who have nothing to do with running the venue.
“That’s kind of troubling, y’know?”
Flynn’s concern falls in line with Machine Head’s latest album, “The Blackening,” which was named album of the year in the European hard rock publications Kerrang! and Metal Hammer. The set is heavy on socio-political, including issues that speak to the kind of censorship Flynn, 39, feels the band encountered in September.
“The House of Blues on (Disney) property in Orlando has every violent rap record, every violent metal record for any kid to buy,” he notes. “There’s a movie theater there that plays every violent movie ever released. So where are you drawing the line?
“Can you imagine something like this happening pre-9/11? People would be up in arms. It’s like we’ve just been beaten into this sense of ... acceptance. This isn’t about safety measures; it’s about our lyrics and what we’re singing about — in America.”
The Black Tyranny Tour, featuring Machine Head, Arch Enemy, Throwdown and Sanctity, plays Friday (Oct. 5)at Harpo’s, 14238 Harper Ave., Detroit. Doors open at 5 p.m. Tickets are $20. Call (313) 824-1700 or visit www.harposconcerttheatre.com.
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