Nearly a dozen leading Danish media outlets have penned an open letter to VOLBEAT explaining why they have decided to boycott the band's new album, "Rewind, Replay, Rebound". When the disc is officially released tomorrow (Friday, August 2) none of these publications — including newspaper Politiken, tabloid Ekstra Bladet and metal site Devilution — will review or write about the LP.
The controversy first arose when VOLBEAT allegedly refused to accredit Ekstra Bladet and Devilution for the band's homecoming Copenhagen concert in Telia Parken in August 2017. Every other Danish media outlet was reportedly allowed to cover the show. No explanation was given for the ban, but both of these outlets had previously written negative reviews of the group. VOLBEAT then allegedly blocked the same two publications when the band performed in Denmark this past June. Again, no reason was given for the move.
Now, VOLBEAT apparently also instructed its label, Universal, to refrain from sending out promotional copies of "Rewind, Replay, Rebound" to the same two media outlets, thereby giving them no time to listen to the album and have a review ready in time for the release date. As a result, nine publications — Devilution, Ekstra Bladet, Information, Politiken, Berlingske, Jyllands-Posten, Poplish, Blastbeat and Gaffa — have chosen not to cover the album. Together, they have written an open letter to VOLBEAT, explaining that the band's apparent lack of respect for a free and independent press will not be tolerated by the Danish media. The letter states that none of these media outlets will write about VOLBEAT again until either the group, its record label, promoter Live Nation or management Q Prime lifts this perceived press ban.
In the letter announcing the boycott, the aforementioned publications quoted Lars Ulrich of VOLBEAT's management stablemates METALLICA. The drummer, who made a guest appearance with VOLBEAT at the Telia Parken concert, reportedly once told Ekstra Bladet that METALLICA has always intivited the media to review the group's albums and concerts and that he and his bandmates have never tried to interfere with what has been written about them.
Photo credit: Ross Halfin
(Thanks: Mathias Nielsen)