Animosity grows in series of stinging attacks from band
Guns N’ Roses have labelled Reading Festival director Melvin Benn a “cocky… money grabbing prick” who pulled the plug on the band on Friday (August 27) because he had a grudge against them.
Ashba was the most outspoken. In his post he wrote: “Apparently the promoter has had a personal grudge with GN’R stemming from eight years ago, if this was the case why book the band? He knows our show. Let me guess… To take our fans money and then not allow us to give them a show that they payed for. This was clearly not a curfew thing because after cutting our power like a selfish money grabbing prick, he allowed music blasting through out the venue till the early morning.”
There is an implicit suggestion in his extended tweet that the band went on late to spite Benn, who earlier in the week had been bullish insisting Guns N’ Roses would have to stick to the curfew or face the consequences.
“The promoter was already being a cocky f$#k in the press before we arrived, so yes we went on a little late, and for this we apologies [sic],” added Ashba.
He then went on to say the band were disappointed because they felt the fans were let down.
Meanwhile, Fortus defended the behaviour of Axl Rose and the spirit of the band. Guns N’ Roses led a sit-in after the plug was pulled, performing ‘Paradise City’ acoustically.
“I don’t think there is another band out right now that has the balls to do what we did last night,” wrote Fortus. “Axl insists on doing things his way and not playing by the fucking rules. You can love him or hate him for it, but the fact of the matter is…. he’s the real fucking deal. skin, blood and soul. Deal with it or not, but it won’t ever change.”
The band started their set at 10.30pm (BST), an hour late, and had their curfew extended by half an hour. They staged the sit-in when the power was cut at midnight.
NME will be speaking to Benn later today (August 29) for his reaction. Organisers maintain the band will play Leeds Festival this evening and that the sound was only cut at Reading to comply with the event’s license.