The 1975 Singer Jabs at Muse for Malaysian Setlist Change After His Group Was Recently Banned
The 1975 are still feeling the repercussions of their recent onstage same-sex kiss at the Good Vibes festival in Malaysia that led authorities to shut down the remainder of event, but where they dared to challenge the country's anti-LGBTQ laws with a public display, they're now calling out Muse for allegedly bowing to a setlist change.
As a refresher, during The 1975's July 21 set at the Good Vibes festival, singer Matty Healy decided to use the stage as a platform to speak out against the country's stance on LGBTQ+ rights.
“I’m fucking furious, and that’s not fair on you because you’re not representative of your government,” said the singer during his onstage rant. “Because you are young people, and I’m sure a lot of you are gay and progressive and cool. So, I pulled the show yesterday, I pulled the show yesterday, and we had a conversation and we said, ‘You know what, we can’t let the kids down because they’re not the government.’ But, I’ve done this before. I’ve gone to a country where it’s — I don’t know what it fucking is. Ridiculous. Fucking ridiculous to tell people what they can do with that and that. If you want to invite me here to do a show, you can fuck off. I’ll take your money, you can ban me, but I’ve done this before and it doesn’t feel good, and I’m fucked off.”
After his rant, he then kissed bandmate Ross McDonald onstage in front of the audience. Not long after, the band's set concluded, an estimated 30 minutes ahead of schedule. Healy told the crowd as they walked off the stage, "Alright, we just got banned from Kuala Lumpur, see you later.”
Per Billboard, Healy has a history of advocating for the LGBTQ+ community, previously breaking an anti-LGBTQ law in the United Arab Emirates during a show in Dubai while kissing a male concert goer.
After Healy's onstage commentary and same-sex kiss at the Good Vibes festival, organizers then canceled the remaining festival performances, with festival organizer Future Sound Asia reportedly considering legal action against the group over the financial losses incurred by the cancellation of the remainder of the weekend.
Now, a week-plus removed from the ban, Healy briefly drew attention to the band Muse changing their setlist for a show in Kuala Lumpur, The band had been performing the song "We Are Fucking Fucked" in their sets, but in its place was the previous Muse hit single "The Resistance." Per NME, Healy shared Muse's change in a since-expired Instagram Story.
First, the singer posted a screen shot of a Muse pre-order message that stated, "Join the Resistance." The singer underlined the last two words of the message in red and added his own commentary "Sick" above it.
After that, Healy posted a story about Muse's setlist change based on an interview with one of the show's promoters.
Muse, after the incident with the 1975, had reportedly reached out to make sure their performance would meet the country's guidelines, as they were the next international act expected to play the country.
“They called us shortly after the incident went global. After discussions, they decided to pull one song out of the setlist due to the title of the song. It’s nice to know they’re eager to entertain while also respecting the guidelines,” Hello Universe founder Adam Ashraf said in a statement.
For their part, Muse drummer Dom Howard later shared in an Instagram post, "Side note: We chose to play Resistance over WAFF in Malaysia. A more poignant message given the circumstances."
The Muse song "We Are Fucking Fucked" contains the lyrics, “We’re at death’s door / Another world war / Wildfires and earthquakes I foresaw / A life in crisis, a deadly virus / Tsunamis of hate are gonna drown us/ Ah, we are fucking fucked / Ah, we are fucking fucked.”
Though it's not clear why the song change was needed, Section 14 of the Malaysian penal code does state that anyone using “indecent, threatening, abusive or insulting words… [with] intent to provoke a breach of the peace" could be subject to fine.
In addition to the remainder of the Good Vibes Festival being canceled, the 1975 also had their shows in Indonesia and Taiwan called off soon after. The 1975 will continue their touring this week, partaking in the Lollapalooza Festival in Chicago and playing a show in Hawaii this weekend.
Muse, meanwhile, are on a bit of a touring break before resuming their touring in late September in Dublin, Ireland.