Scowl, Glare, Tomato Flower Among Latest Bands To Drop Off SXSW In Protest Of Army And Defense Contractor Sponsorships

Scowl, Glare, Tomato Flower Among Latest Bands To Drop Off SXSW In Protest Of Army And Defense Contractor Sponsorships

Earlier this week, Chicago indie rock artist Squirrel Flower announced she was pulling out of next week’s SXSW Music in protest of the festival platforming the US Army and defense contractors supplying weapons used against Palestinians in Gaza. Other artists like Eliza McLamb, Shalom, Mamalarky, and Merce Lemon followed suit. Since then more bands — including Scowl, Glare, and Tomato Flower — have canceled their official SXSW showcase appearances as well.

On Friday, Santa Cruz hardcore crew Scowl shared a statement to X, saying they “refuse to be complicit in the face of genocide in Palestine.” Read it in full:

Scowl is no longer performing at any of our previously scheduled “official” SXSW showcases.

We came to this decision in protest of the U.S. Army’s sponsorship of SXSW. As well as the involvement of RTX (formerly Raytheon), Collins Aerospace, and BAE Systems whom have direct ties to the manufacturing and supplying of weapons used against Palestinians.

We refuse to be complicit in the face of genocide in Palestine. We refuse to participate in the war machine.

We will still be performing at our scheduled unofficial showcases.

Around the same time, the New Jersey hardcore band Gel posted:

“We will be pulling out of all official SXSW shows next week. There’s no reason for @sxsw to involve the music of our peers and music at large with the US Army and defense companies that are actively committing and/or complicit in genocide. Free Palestine 🇵🇸”

And Texas shoegazers Glare posted their own update on Instagram, writing, “We will be dropping off all official SXSW shows effective immediately. Updated schedule drops soon. Free Palestine. 🇵🇸”

Scowl, Gel, and Glare were all on the lineup for Flatspot Records’ March 16 event, which is now removing its official affiliation with SXSW entirely: “We will not support the involvement of the U.S. Army and defense companies at SXSW,” the label announced. “Flatspot World is still a go, now at The Little Darlin – Free and All Ages. Doors will now be at 4pm.” That showcase also includes Buggin, End It, Kharma, and others.

Today Tomato Flower, Lambrini Girls, and Lip Critic dropped off SXSW too. “We are withdrawing from SXSW official showcases in support of the movement against the festival’s ties to the military- industrial complex,” Tomato Flower write.


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UPDATE: Squirrel Flower has shared a larger list of bands who have dropped out of SXSW. It has Horse Jumper Of Love, They Are Gutting A Body Of Water, This Is Lorelei, Buffalo Nichols, The Curls, Joyer, Greg Freman, Fantasy Of A Broken Heart, and more. See it below.

UPDATE 2 (3/10): Kneecap, Omni, Sprints, the Armed, Allegra Krieger, Fust, Glixen, Yaya Bey, Cumgirl8, and Frances Chang are among the latest to drop out of SXSW. That brings the total number of bands that have disassociated from the festival up to more than three dozen.

“That the organisers of SXSW have taken the decision to mix the arts with the military and weapons companies is unforgivable,” Kneecap wrote in their statement. “That they have done so as we witness a genocide facilitated by the US military and its contractors is depraved.”

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