Foals‘ Edwin Congrave has revealed that his concerns over climate change led him to question “whether [he] should be in the band”.
Appearing on the BBC Radio 5 Live’s What Planet Are We On? podcast, the keyboardist discussed his reluctance to tour countries such as Australia and Asia due to its impact on the environment.
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“I think that it would be quite easy for us and a lot of bands to tour differently,” Congrave said. “I don’t want to fly ever again.”
He went on to say that he had been suffering from eco-anxiety after becoming more educated on the issues of climate change.
“This year I’ve had to kind of look at the question of whether I should be in the band – but if I didn’t go on this tour this summer then the obvious point comes up that someone else would do it,” Congrave added.
“So it’s not like I’m going to stop the flying and I’m just not quite ready to walk out of my job.”
No Music On A Dead Planet
— FOALS (@foals) September 20, 2019
The musician suggested that Foals, who’ve previously supported the No Music On A Dead Planet campaign and Extinction Rebellion, could avoid “certain types of tours” in the future as a means to lessen their carbon footprint.
“It wouldn’t affect our business particularly, but it would mean that we are not freighting two tonnes of gear halfway across the world and back,” Congrave said. “So, for me, that seems like quite a clear case of something we shouldn’t do.”
However, he explained that frontman Yannis Philippakis may hold a different view: “He just wants to make music and that’s his whole reason of being, so to suggest to him that we cannot tour is kind of like an affront to his identity.
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“He wants to communicate his music to fans and to not be able to do that means stripping away his life.”
Speaking to NME last year, Foals said that they would be discussing “how we tour, how often we tour and where we tour” before heading out on the road again.
“Things are going to change very dramatically, very soon, and that’s inevitable, but there’s change with a capital C which is what’s needed and that’s something else,” said Congrave at the time.
“You can see it in small groups of people, and that’s one of the great things about Extinction Rebellion: you hang out with a small community and the change is already there. There are a lot of forces of darkness to get past.”