Polish death metal giants Behemoth have been detained by Russian authorities while touring the country in support of their newest album The Satanist.
The band started their Russian Satanist tour in St Petersburg on May 10 and have taken in seven dates since, presumably without a hitch. However, frontman Nergal released a statement (in Polish) via the band’s Facebook page earlier saying they’ve been halted by the country’s immigration services while travelling to their next gig in Yekaterinburg.
Nergal says: “We’ve been stopped by the immigration services for ‘wrong visas’. When I said that we will not move an inch from the club without someone from the Polish embassy, they threatened to force us out. They took us in a bus, accompanied by ten officers, to the building of Federal Migration Service.
“We tried to reach the Polish embassy in Yekaterinburg but no one is answering the phone. If possible – please copy this message and pass it everywhere you can. We may expect a multihour (?) hearing. The concert is off for sure. The only thing we want is to get back to the hotel safely and then – to Poland. No matter how hard we try – we cannot pass at all.”
It would therefore appear the rest of their Russian dates are likely to be cancelled. This could just be a misunderstanding but in Putin’s Russia, who knows? Already some are claiming the band have been picked out for their ‘Satanist’ qualities and with Putin’s intolerance of anything that scares him (homosexuals, opposition, not being a murderous dictator) let’s just hope Behemoth are safe.
Behemoth will be headlining the third stage at Download Festival on the Saturday and appearing on the second main stage at Hellfest a week later.