NewsAugust 22, 2023 8:07 PM ET21,569 views

Blackbraid's clash with Midgardsblot security: Video emerges offering more perspective


Dylan Tarre

Over the weekend there was controversy surrounding the band Blackbraid and their experience at the Midgardsblot festival. The dispute occurred a day after Blackbraid's headline performance at the festival on Friday night, and before a planned flue set by vocalist Sgah'gahsowáh (Jon Krieger) at the festival bonfire on Saturday. 

The incident revolves around claims of discrimination against the band members by festival security. These allegations prompted an emotional response from both Blackbraid and their fans, leading to a flurry of online posts. As screenshots and videos have been shared online, things became clearer as to what happened, and the band later apologized for "the spitting situation" while agreeing that "the situation was handled poorly on all sides."

Initially, the band arrived at the festival enjoying the atmosphere, stating:

Midgardsblot we have arrived! Day one was already such a beautiful experience and the hospitality here has been amazing. We have already had the pleasure of meeting a lot of blackbraid fans. We play tomorrow night, headlining the kaupanger stage, and couldn't be more excited. See you there!

The next day, the band was grateful for the opportunity and promised to be back, saying:

Midgardsblot! Last night was beautiful, it has truly been an honor. We hope you enjoyed yourselves as much as we did, we love you Norway and we shall definitely return! 

At some point later in the evening, before the vocalist's special flute set at the bonfire, things took a turn, as the band members began making public statements of discrimination and racism.

The crux of the band's issue with security was summed up in a comment made by the official Blackbraid Instagram account:

They mistook me for another brown person at the festival that they didn't like, that's the whole issue 

All the guards see is a brown guy with long black hair and they want them gone. I posted exactly what happened, there's no way I could be any clearer. Racial profiling [a]t it's finest on behalf of the security staff

Blackbraid's guitarist shared on his now-private Instagram account:


As much as I was enjoying my experience towards the end they decided to show their true colors. Remember you wanted us here. Tag them and let my voice be heard.

The fans and everyone attending have been lovely but the production and security have been harassing me this all night so f*ck them. Apparently laying down is a crime. I was kicked out for "sleeping" on a hill. They can f*ck off for all I care. I will never play this festival again.

Blackbraid Instagram

Some tense words were shared by the guitarist with the festival organizers:

F*ck the coward of Midgardsblot who would not show their face so we can have direct communication about the events that transpired f*ck you!

The Blackbraid member shared further:

If you're looking for an "explantation" you can seriously f*ck off just know that you you don't understand and will probably never understand what it feels like to be discriminated

I am so pissed off if you wanna f*ck with me white people do better

However, the situation's complexity emerged as further details were examined, as a video of interactions between the band and security revealed a dialogue that suggested a more nuanced scenario. Accusations of racial profiling were countered by security voicing concerns involving public intoxication and Norwegian policies about sleeping in concert areas. The security guard also mentions the incident where a band member spat on the head of security personnel, further adding to the boiling point that led to the band's removal. 


Blackbraid confront security at Midgardsblot in Norway

♬ original sound - Lambgoat

After everything was said and done, the band is not willing to overlook the discrimination they faced, and the security team at Midgardsblot stood by their policies for public intoxication and sleeping on festival grounds. Poor communication seems to have led to a bad situation all around, and the band ultimately apologized for their actions.

"I apologize for my behavior in the situation, especially the spitting situation, and to the fans who have been upset by the situation, and to the festival staff who tried to handle the situation with security before it got out of hand. I was livid with the treatment we were receiving, and did not handle myself in a responsible way whatsoever. I let my anger get the best of me and my actions were out of line. We are grateful for any opportunity to play in Norway and hope to return one day under different circumstances."

Read the full quote and apology from Blackbraid here.

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