Thursday 27 October 2016

Massive Attack hit back at 'racists and bigots' during London festival set

Published 01/07/2016 | 22:36

Massive Attack perform at the British Summer Time festival
Massive Attack perform at the British Summer Time festival

The fallout from the EU referendum continued to stretch far beyond the political and economic arenas, as trip-hop pioneers Massive Attack hit back at the "racists and bigots" during a historic London festival set on Friday.

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Frontman Robert Del Naja lamented last week's public vote during a headline slot at Hyde Park for the opening night of the 2016 Barclaycard presents British Summer Time festival.

Playing Eurochild, a song they wrote in 1993 and had not performed for two decades, the vocalist said: "We didn't expect to be singing this 20 years later as a requiem (for Britain's membership of the EU).

"As sons of immigrants, we (Del Naja and fellow band member Grant Marshall) are both very disappointed with the situation.

"We can't allow ourselves to fall victim to the populist bullshit going on at the moment.

"We can't let the bigots and racists back into this situation. It's bullshit."

Massive Attack were backed by much-hyped Mercury Prize-winning collaborators Young Fathers, who dedicated song Shame to "Boris Johnson and Michael Gove - the lying f****** bastards".

Performing in front of several political motifs emblazoned on a large screen, including "We're in this together", #WithRefugees and recent tabloid newspaper headlines, the rap veterans dipped into an extensive back catalogue spanning three decades, including best-known works Safe From Harm and Unfinished Sympathy.

The set was billed as one of the live collaborations of the year, with vocalist Tricky performing on the same stage as the Bristol musicians for only the second time.

The acclaimed artist cut his teeth collaborating with the rap and dance pioneers in the late 1980s but did not share a stage until this year in Berlin.

They were also joined by TV On The Radio vocalist Tunde Adebimpe - whose band performed on the same stage earlier in the bill - for Pray For Rain, which opened 2010's Heligoland.

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