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Wax Idols & King Woman explain their decision to drop off Pentagram tour

Wax Idols at BVCMJ 2015 (more by Amanda Hatfield)
Wax Idols at BVCMJ 2015 (more by Amanda Hatfield)

Wax Idols and King Woman dropped off their tour with doom metal legends Pentagram last month and released a statement via Instagram saying they made their decision due to “an overload of bullshit” and then tweeted about being treated poorly and experiencing harassment throughout the tour.

Today in an interview with Noisey, Hether Fortune and Kristina Esfandiari, of Wax Idols and King Woman respectively, shared details about their experiences with Pentagram lead singer Bobby Liebling during the tour.

Hether said:

Bobby made several absurdly gross, inappropriate comments to all of the women on the tour, but the worst thing was that a fan told us that she left the Pentagram show and was super disgusted because he was making rape jokes onstage. And he was. He did. He makes jokes onstage about how the legal age of consent is only 16, and I don’t know what the rape joke was this time, because I wasn’t even watching them. At that point, I didn’t watch them anymore. But people were writing to us and King Woman expressing their disgust with the shit that he was saying onstage about rape. So I was like, “Alright, I can’t do this. It’s just too much.”

Later in the interview, she expanded on why she decided to leave the tour:

I’ve gotten extremely used to being discredited, scoffed at, made fun of, told that I’m a bitch, that I’m crazy, that I’m delusional, that I’m a nobody, that what I think doesn’t matter, that my band doesn’t matter—I’ve been told all of these things by so many people, and I’m used to it. But I don’t believe it. So I refuse to allow myself to be treated that way, no matter what people say to me and how people treat me. And I’m not going to let my bandmates get treated that way. Absolutely not. I’ll never sit back and watch people that I care about get disrespected and treated like shit, and watch them feel bad and uncomfortable, and not do anything to help them. It’s just not going to happen.

After Noisey reached out to Pentagram, their manager shared a statement given by the band defending Bobby, saying:

We’ve been professionally performing and recording music for close to 50 yrs and this is one of the most unfounded and grossly opportunistic situations that we’ve ever encountered. These bands didn’t communicate to Pentagram or the tour manager about wanting to leave the tour. A few nights into the tour, they simply disappeared, posted negatively about us on social media and then headed over to the show that was previously set up for them that very night.

Our mutual agent had set up a separate deal with the promoters for the opening acts. Pentagram’s contract and all inclusions / exclusions were between Pentagram and the promoter.

Bobby Liebling offended someone from one of the opening bands. He said something to the effect of, “I approve of you being on the tour because I want options”. Pentagram as a band sincerely apologized for Bobby’s comment. Bobby verbally hit on this girl, that’s as far as it got. It’s no secret that he’s attracted to women and that’s not a crime. He’s a single man. He may have been uncouth but there was no touching. We tried to be nice but these openers gave us no real chance to interact, avoided us at all costs and made us feel uncomfortable on our own tour.

Drummer Peter Campbell also shared his own views in a comment on Wax Idols’ Facebook post, apologizing for Bobby’s behavior (and Wax Idols responded):

As mentioned, King Woman and Wax Idols are currently on their own co-headling tour, which stopped by NY for a show at Saint Vitus last Saturday (6/4). Remaining dates are listed below.

King Woman/Wax Idols — 2016 Tour Dates
June 7: Philadelphia, PA – Boot & Saddle
June 8: Washington DC – Songbyrd DC
June 9: Richmond, VA – Strange Matter
June 10: Chapel Hill, NC – Local 506
June 11: Atlanta, GA – The EARL
June 12: New Orleans, LA – Siberia
June 14: Dallas, TX – Red Blood Club
June 15: Austin, TX – Mohawk
June 17: Tucson, AZ – Club Congress (free show)
June 18: – Fullerton, CA – The Slidebar (free show)

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