jump to navigation

Stupidity piled on stupidity… February 9, 2019

Posted by WorldbyStorm in Uncategorized.

This is almost unbelievable, a report how:

The shadow justice secretary, Richard Burgon, has told a court there is no justification for linking his decision to record a track with a heavy metal band that allegedly used Nazi-influenced fonts and claims of antisemitism in the Labour party.
The Labour MP, who would become lord chancellor and be placed in charge of the legal system if the party came to power, is suing the Sun newspaper for libel after it published an article entitled “Reich and Roll: Labour’s justice boss ridiculed after he joins a heavy metal band that delights in Nazi symbols”.
Burgon launched the libel action against the Rupert Murdoch-owned newspaper and its political editor, Tom Newton Dunn, after it reported on his guest appearance with the Leeds band Dream Tröll.


The article, published in April 2017, claimed the typeface used for the letter “S” in a Dream Tröll social media post entitled “We Sold Our Soul For Rock N Tröll” paid homage to the logo of Adolf Hitler’s SS paramilitary organisation, which played a key role in the Nazi Holocaust.

Check out the rest of the report which notes that:

At one point proceedings paused briefly while lawyers explained the identity of the singer Lemmy from Motörhead to the high court judge, amid lengthy discussions over the current popularity of Black Sabbath in the United Kingdom and Burgon’s views on the use of gothic typography by the band Kiss.

Poor old Kiss. They’ve danced this dance before.

The letters happened to look similar to the insignia of the Nazi SS, a symbol that is outlawed in Germany by Section 86a of the German criminal code. Since 1979, most of the band’s album covers and merchandise in Germany have used an alternate logo, in which the letters “SS” look like the letters “ZZ” backwards. This logo is also used in Austria, Switzerland, Poland, Lithuania, Hungary and Israel to avoid controversy

That two of their original members were Jewish, indeed that Gene Simmons was born in Israel before going to the US, must have blunted the momentum of the Sun’s attack.

As to Sabbath or Motorhead (umlauts or not and putting Lemmy’s fascination with militaria aside, which it should be stressed does not indicate identification with Nazism) the idea they were Nazi is absurd. That heavy metal has played with Gothic (rather than Nazi) imagery is unquestionable – and there’s interesting and intriguing aspects to that. Arguably it locks into a different tradition which was almost proto-Gothic (in the musical sense as well as thematically concerning itself with death, decay, the occult, etc) as well as efforts to visually signify heaviness by a fairly crude and clunkingly literal recourse to heavy lettered style type.

There was, and perhaps to an extent is, a sub-sub-genre of black metal entitled national socialist metal that is indeed fascist but that’s a different matter entirely and not pertinent to this given that it appeared long after the groups mentioned above.

And the outcome?

Burgon has won £30,000 in libel damages in a 
high court action against the Sun over claims a heavy metal band he performed with used Nazi imagery, the Press Association reports.

Good for him. It would be interesting to go back though the Sun’s previous editions across the years to see if they ever picked up on this before. They’ve had fifty odd years to do so in regard to Sabbath, Kiss and Motorhead and given their evident concern about supposed Nazi aspects one has to presume they’d have been strongly publicising this previously.


1. 6to5against - February 10, 2019

Extraordinary story, and evidence surely that even the centre left cannot get fair coverage in the British press – and they should give up trying.

By way of contrast, I don’t recall any horror when it was revealed Gove is a Wagner fan.


Liked by 1 person

WorldbyStorm - February 10, 2019

The political aspect of this is fascinating isn’t it? As you say, they hammer him simply because he’s Labour. Of course they know he’s not anti-semitic or Nazi and neither is the band or the music but still they went all the way to court.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: