I'm used to having my hopes and dreams crushed by rappers' live performances. I'm also aware of MF Doom's notoriety for sending impostors to his PAs, in the tradition of many great musicians before him, such as, erm, Saddam Hussein? But when he pulled that shit on my buddies – the guys who run London's Livin' Proof – rather than getting angry, I was just kinda underwhelmed.
Having agreed and been contracted to appear for a DJ set, he got his management to hold them ransom for more money at the last minute. He then requested for the funds to be put directly into his bank account (LOL, what a scrounging wino). You can read their full statement here. I tried contacting a representative for Doom who refused to comment. Weird right?!
This is the generic black guy in a really big jacket they sent to press play on a pre-mixed set. For context's sake, I noticed that the guy with glasses on the left of the photo is known dick Naheem Kassam-Bey, who already has a healthy reputation for swindling money from promoters.
Well, at least the mask is real! Hey, remember when he sent his mate, DJ Wesu to do a couple of shows too?
Obviously I'm going to be bias 'cos they're my friends, and maybe they were a little naive to hope that Doom wouldn't be a cunt, but am I the only one who doesn't think any of this is "villainous" in the slightest? It's just kinda lame. Like, look old man, if you genuinely have agoraphobia problems, maybe you should have some counselling, instead of not being able to operate on a basic level of human decency.
Doom's defended not bothering to turn up to shows before, in a ~rare~ interview:
"Everything that we do is villain style. It might've seemed like it didn't go well, but how do we know that wasn't just pre-orchestrated so that we're talking about it now?
I tell you one thing: People are asking more now for live shows and I'm charging more, so it must've worked somewhere...I tell you one thing: when you come to a Doom show, come expecting to hear music, don't come expecting to see."
OK, adorable cover story, we get you. I can already hear a million backpack-rap nerds spunking their pants to defend him with, "ANYONE WHO PUTS ON THE MASK BECOMES DOOM!" but, it's like, really, though? 'Cos here's another Doom stand-in getting booed off stage and having shit thrown at him at Rock The Bells in 2008.
I'm pretty sure you can't "come expecting to hear music" when the audience is hurling abuse over the speakers of the laptop your impostor pressed play on, no? It doesn't look like that amazing of an aural experience.
In short, I think you forfeit the right to sticking-it-to-the-man glory when you're just fucking with peoples' livelihoods for pocket money. These guys aren't Pitchfork festival, they're a group of friends who finance and organize shit off their own back to put on a fun night. There's zero integrity in making a habit of disappointing the people who love your music. It's not enigmatic, it's just sad and weird and we all know you live on some guy's sofa in south London.
After all, what's the point of an artist that can't perform their own music?
Follow Jo on Twitter @FUERTESKNIGHT
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