Interpol frontman Paul Banks is claiming to have been misquoted in regards to his comments about Morrissey.
Banks’ new statement has been released after murmurs of criticism from their fans after they announced plans to tour with the former Smiths frontman Morrissey, a man who has confirmed his controversial political stance in favour of the far-right.
Last week Far Out Magazine ran the story ‘Interpol decide to ignore Morrissey’s controversial stance on racism in favour of self promotion,’ after Banks was quoted in an interview with Hot Press, saying: “We thought it would be a good show for our band,” in answer to questioning about the decision to tour with Morrissey. “That’s how I’m looking at it. I don’t get too much into the other stuff,” he supposedly added in reference to the political debate.
However, in a statement issued on social media, Banks’ has claimed to be misquoted. “The actual quote that I gave regarding the upcoming Morrissey tour was ‘we thought it would be a good show for OUR FANS.’ Not ‘for our band,’” he posted.
He continued, “I do not always hold the same beliefs as artists I work with, and I do not consider that to be a requisite.”
In addition, Banks addressed the racism issues: “I abhor racism, homophobia, and any form of prejudice based on a person’s nationality, race, ethnicity, religion, gender, gender identification, or sociecomonic status.”
While Morrissey’s political stance has been quietly discussed for decades, his recent decision to publicly support far-right political movement ‘For Britain’ has edged pushed fans of The Smiths into the abyss. The ‘For Britain Movement’ is a political group—often described as extremist—founded by the anti-Islam activist Anne Marie Waters after she was defeated in the 2017 UKIP leadership. Morrissey was asked outright if he supported the party to which he answered in no uncertain terms: “Absolutely, yes.”
This clear position comes after months of flirting around the conversation. After wearing the badge of For Britain while performing live on US television, defending the likes of Tommy Robinson, suggested that Hitler was left-wing and hitting out at London mayor Sadiq Kahn in a slur about his speech, Morrissey has been letting his feelings known to full effect.
The final straw however, if we haven’t experienced the final one already, came when Morrissey emphatically branded the term racism as “meaningless” and claimed that people generally prefer their own race. “If you call someone racist in modern Britain you are telling them that you have run out of words,” he said in a recent interview. “You are shutting the debate down and running off. The word is meaningless now.”
He added: “Everyone ultimately prefers their own race… does this make everyone racist? The people who reduce every conversation down to a matter of race could be said to be the most traditionally ‘racist’
“Diversity can’t possibly be a strength if everyone has ideas that will never correspond. If borders are such terrible things then why did they ever exist in the first place? Borders bring order.”