Ariel Pink’s Haunted Graffiti sued by former drummer for $1 million

Aaron Sperske claims cult lo-fi favourite violated their 'oral partnership'

Ariel Pink’s Haunted Graffiti are being sued by their former drummer for $1 million (£635,000) after he claimed he was illegally “squeezed out” of the band, according to reports.

According to details of a lawsuit published on Entertainment Law Digest, former sticksman Aaron Sperske is seeking punitive damages and has filed a claim in a federal court in Los Angeles in which he accuses the band’s other members of violating their “oral partnership”.

Sperske claims he helped write songs for the band’s new album ‘Mature Themes’, which is released on August 20, and is entitled to 25 per cent ownership of the tracks along with the band’s three remaining members. The drummer, who also said he was axed from the band despite performing “diligently and completely”, is now demanding that he receives “profits from royalties and future shows”.

‘Mature Themes’ will be the second studio album from Ariel Pink’s Haunted Graffiti after their debut LP, ‘Before Today’, was released in 2010. Previously, Pink – real name Ariel Rosenberg – released a glut of albums for Animal Collective’s Paw Tracks label before signing to 4AD in 2009.

In an interview with NME magazine earlier this month (August 11), Pink claimed that music needed more “weird” characters, declaring: “We have a lot of self-haters, a lot of fragile souls, but no-one to look up to. I’m dying for a rock star I can really get behind. I like Charlie Manson, because he’s weird. We need more psychopathic rock stars.”