Photo via @GlasgowBDS / Twitter
Next week, Radiohead are due to take the stage in Tel Aviv, Israel. The performance has drawn controversy from Palestinian activists, who’ve called for a cultural boycott of Israel until Palestinians are granted greater equality under Israeli law. A group of musicians including Roger Waters, Thurston Moore, and TV on the Radio’s Tunde Adebimpe recently signed an open letter calling on Radiohead to cancel the concert, and last night a protest was held during Radiohead’s concert at the TRNSMT Festival in Glasgow, Scotland.
Activists from Glasgow Palestine Action, Glasgow Palestine Solidarity Campaign, and Radiohead Fans for Palestine demonstrated outside the festival prior to the band’s performance. Once they took the stage, they were met by a sea of Palestinian flags and signs.
Radiohead frontman Thom Yorke appeared agitated by the protestors, according to fans in attendance. Prior to the band’s performance of “Myxomatosis”, he repeatedly exclaimed, “Some fucking people!” while staring out into the crowd. He was also caught giving the middle finger.
It’s unclear whether either action was in response to the protestors, but he previously voiced his annoyance over the uproar. “I’ll be totally honest with you: this has been extremely upsetting,” Yorke admitted in a recent interview with Rolling Stone. “I don’t agree with the cultural ban at all.”
Yorke also noted “how offensive” the boycott is to Radiohead guitarist Jonny Greenwood, who is married to an Arab Jew. “And imagine how upsetting that it’s been to have this out there. Just to assume that we know nothing about this. Just to throw the word ‘apartheid’ around and think that’s enough. It’s fucking weird. It’s such an extraordinary waste of energy. Energy that could be used in a more positive way.”
As of now, Radiohead is still scheduled to perform the concert, scheduled to take place at Park Hayarkon on July 19th. The band will be joined by the Jewish-Arabic band Dudu Tassa & The Kuwaitis.