REEF were left red-faced following a dressing down by police on Tuesday (November 7) after a publicity stunt they were pulling backfired.
The band had planned to ‘kidnap’ a student radio presenter during his show and have the incident filmed for a later broadcast on ChannelFly TV in the UK. Things went wrong shortly after the four-piece, wearing balaclavas and carrying imitation pistols, stormed the radio station’s office (the former home of Creation Records) near Primrose Hill in north London. A passer-by noticed what was happening and called the police. Several local policemen and one ARU (Armed Response Unit) usually made up of two officers arrived within minutes.
After discovering the whole thing was a stunt they gave the band a severe ticking off, and left.
However, the band claim that 10 ARU policemen arrived initially and were soon joined by a phalanx of fellow officers both in cars and on motorcycles. They also claim to have been cautioned over the incident. When NME.COM contacted the Metropolitan Police for confirmation, it emerged that Reef had embellished the truth somewhat.
“Police were called by a member of the public at 7.50pm when they saw someone enter the premises on Regent’s Park Road wearing a balaclava and carrying what appeared to be a gun,” a police spokesperson said. “Local officers and an ARU attended the scene. When it was established the gun was imitation and being used for a film, the band were given words of advice and the officers left. No arrests were made and no cautions issued.”
The band had planned the stunt as the radio show, presented by Craig Pilling for Student Broadcast Network was called Fly Jack. Band members usually show up and ‘highjack’ the mics, saying and playing whatever they want. It seems the West Country rockers fancied taking things a little further.