In a candid, no-holds-barred interview with Rolling Stone, Hoppus and Barker called their former bandmate “disrespectful and ungrateful” for backing out of Blink-182’s upcoming commitments, which included the recording of a new studio album and an upcoming festival appearance at Barker’s Musink Tattoo and Music Festival.
Hoppus reiterated that DeLonge broke the news to he and Barker via an email sent by his manager.
We booked January 5th to go into the studio. On December 30th, we get an e-mail from Tom’s manager saying that he has no interest in recording and that he wants to do his other, non-musical stuff and that he’s out indefinitely. There’s a flurry of e-mails going back and forth for clarification about the recording and the show and his manager sends [an e-mail] back saying, “Tom. Is. Out.” Direct quote. This is the exact same e-mail we got back in 2004 when Tom went on indefinite hiatus before.
Barker hammered DeLonge for not having “the balls to call your bandmates and tell them you’re not going to record or do anything Blink-related.” He also questioned DeLonge’s commitment to reuniting Blink in 2009, saying “We only got back together, I don’t know, maybe because I almost died,” a reference to the plane crash that nearly killed Barker. “But he didn’t even listen to mixes or masterings from that record. He didn’t even care about it. Why Blink even got back together in the first place is questionable.”
When Blink-182 first split in 2005, Hoppus and Barker continued to work together as +44. This time around, however, the pair say they are “intent on protecting the legacy of Blink-182 and continue to do what we’ve been doing for the past two decades: continue playing the songs.” Hoppus added:
There are legalities involved with this. As Tom pointed out, he technically didn’t quit the band. Then it gets all lawyer-y, which I will leave to the attorneys and managers. I just want to go out and play Blink songs. I want to go out and play the songs that we’ve been spending the last 20 years of our lives writing. That’s what Travis and I want to do. If Tom doesn’t want to do that, which obviously he doesn’t, that’s OK. He doesn’t have to be embarrassed or try to claim that he’s secretly really working on Blink. People know what’s up. C’mon, man.
On several occasions during the email, Hoppus and Barker accused DeLonge of being dishonest with the band’s fans. They said the Instagram posted by Hoppus in which he disputed the news of his departure was a “lie.” Barker added, “It’s just funny to me. I think he’s just in shock that he’s finally been exposed. The truth is out.”
Asked if they would even be open to DeLonge returning, Hoppus responded, “I’ve done everything that we could to give Tom what he says he needs. It’s been years of pushing back and I have to tell you: It feels humiliating to be in a band where you have to be apologizing for one person all the time. That’s how it’s felt for a long time.”
Below listen to Blink-182’s “Stay Together For the Kids”.