Hoops Break Up, Citing Sexual Abuse

The Bloomington indie rock band Hoops have broken up. In a statement on Instagram, frontman Drew Auscherman cites sexual abuse allegations against a former member of the band, as well as his “own personal issues of emotional abuse towards partners and friends.” Auscherman writes, “We have come to the conclusion that it is no longer acceptable for us to continue as a band with this sort of platform.”

Hoops released their debut album Routines in 2017, and they went on hiatus shortly thereafter. Last year, the band returned — as a trio, rather than a four-piece — and released the single “They Say.” The band had a sophomore album called Halo set to arrive in October, and they just shared a new single last week. According to a representative for the band, the album is no longer scheduled for release.

Here’s the full text of Auscherman’s statement:

CW: Sexual Abuse

This is Drew speaking.

We’ve been seeing some pretty terrible things on Twitter over the past week involving a former member of the band. I feel it’s necessary to say that we as people and as a band abhor that kind of behavior and do not tolerate sexual abuse in any form. To the victim, we offer our sincerest apologies, and welcome any discussion needed to sort through this traumatic process.

The former member in question has been out of the band since 2017, and as we understood it, their decision to leave was for reasons unrelated to this situation. A while after the band had broken up, I was made aware of this former member’s actions. I made the mistake of not pursuing the matters further with the band and the former member, which i now realise only extended and amplified the victim’s suffering.

Additionally, I think it is worth adding that I have not been transparent enough in the reasoning behind the band’s initial breakup. I think that Hoops came back too soon while I was still working through my own personal issues of emotional abuse towards partners and friends. These are things I’m still working through and at the moment takes precedence over all things music related. That being said, we have come to the conclusion that it is no longer acceptable for us to continue as a band with this sort of platform.

It’s been made clear to us that we need to step it up in terms of accountability, to each other in the band and to the people around us. We have a responsibility to be honest and call out toxic behavior where we see it. We’ll continue to work at improving ourselves, but clearly in these cases we fell short. We’re grateful to those who have helped us understand that more fully, and remorseful that it took us this long to reexamine how we communicate with one another.

And here’s Fat Possum’s statement about shelving the new Hoops album:

In light of Hoops’ announcement regarding allegations against a former member, Fat Possum will not be releasing their album “Halo”. Refunds on album pre-orders will be issued as quickly as possible. The label does not tolerate sexual abuse of any kind and stands with all victims.