Danny McNamara speaks out against the inclusion of the far right Freedom Party in the Austrian government in an nme.com exclusive...

EMBRACE have boycotted Austria on their forthcoming European tour, in protest at the inclusion of JORG HAIDER’S far-right Freedom Party in the Austrian coalition government.

The band, who release their second album ‘Drawn From Memory’ on March 27 through Hut, were due to play Vienna during their April tour but have now pulled out. The rest of the European tour goes on as planned.

Embrace frontman Danny McNamara told nme.com: “We cancelled the show so that we could assess the situation. We’re not saying we’ll never play Austria again but if the Freedom Party was still part of the government there we’d only go at the invite of an opposition group or as part of a protest.”

“We’re sorry for the people who came to see us last time we played in Vienna and we apologise to the 73% of Austrians who didn’t vote for the Freedom Party.”

“It’s a shame we had to pull the show, but the people of Austria have to understand how the rest of the world are going to view their country if people like Jorg Haider are connected with their government.”

“I’m sure our fans in Austria feel the same way we do, I’m sure they understand and we hope other bands will follow our lead.”

Already, Bush and Lou Reed have protested against the Freedom Party. At a recent gig in Vienna Bush frontman Gavin Rossdale sang a Jewish prayer in protest against the party while Lou Reed’s just cancelled a show in the city.

The ex-Velvet Underground singer told an Austrian radio statio that people were free to elect parties like the Freedom Party: “but that doesn’t mean other people have to go near them.”