Coldplay frontman Chris Martin has addressed the recent calls for the band to cancel their upcoming concert in Malaysia. ICYMI, the band’s promotion of a “culture of hedonism and perversion,” according to Malaysian Islamic Party (PAS) chairman Nasrudin Hassan, was what prompted the call for the show to be cancelled here.
Martin reacted to the incident in an interview with Malaysian national radio station HITZ, praising the friendliness and hospitality of the Malaysian people. He emphasised that Coldplay invites everybody to their concerts, regardless of faith or other differences. Martin’s message was one of inclusivity, encouraging each person to be their authentic selves and to tolerate the same qualities in others.
He extended love to those who might not be pleased with their arrival, emphasising that Coldplay loves them as well.
Watch the full clip here:
With regards to Malaysians as a whole, the reaction has been split, with many locals criticising PAS’ actions, while another handful has expressed agreement with the party, citing concerns of homosexuality and “extreme liberation”.
Notably, Prime Minister Anwar Ibrahim showed his open support for Coldplay’s concert by sharing a video on Instagram specifically to welcome the band:
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Many netizens linked Anwar’s support to the fact that Coldplay sponsors Interceptor 005, a cutting-edge boat made with the intention to clean Malaysian rivers.
The project, which was undertaken in partnership with the Dutch NGO The Ocean Cleanup, was initiated in efforts to combat water pollution. Following the initial model positioned in the Klang River in 2019, Malaysia was the first nation to acquire this improved version.
This episode involving Coldplay is not the first time a musical act has faced calls for cancellation in Malaysia.
Previously, Muslim preacher PU Syed demanded that BLACKPINK’s concert be postponed due to a lack of religious benefit. He also claimed the band’s presence would invoke the Dajjal, and some netizens also pointed out similar instances where BLACKPINK has openly portrayed support towards the LGBT community during their shows by flaunting the popular rainbow flag onstage.
In a similar vein, PAS has threatened to hold protests while calling for restrictions on internationally concerts, including Billie Eilish’s show from the year before.
Either way, Coldplay remains steadfast in spreading their message of love and inclusivity in spite of the controversy and hostility, intending to provide its Malaysian fans an unforgettable and welcoming experience.