The pop rock band ‘The 1975’ are now taking a break after finishing their world tour. A tour, with performances which caused very different reactions in Denmark and Malaysia to the singer Matty Healy’s ‘affectionate’ stage behavior.
When Healy performed at the Northside Festival in Denmark in June this year, the singer shared a short kiss with a security guard. The guard smiled and raised his hand in the air after the kiss, and the crowd cheered. That was really it.
But the reaction was a bit different, when the band performed in Malaysia a month later. In Kuala Lumpur, the 34-year-old singer kissed his bandmate on stage during a song. A kiss which resulted in an immediate ban from performing.
Different cultures, different responses
Important to understand is the difference in LGBTQ+ policies within the two countries. Before the kiss, Healy had already criticized Malaysia for its anti-queer policies. But it escalated when he then kissed his male bandmate on stage afterwards.
“Okay, we have to go, we just got banned from Kuala Lumpur,” Healy said before hurriedly exiting the stage.
In Malaysia, the act was seen as ‘provoking and indulging in an indecent act.’ People on Twitter blamed Healy for his insensitivity to the country.
“Wow, thanks a lot, The 1975. You have officially made it very difficult for Malaysia to have anymore international concerts,” read a post on X, previously known as Twitter.
The singer regrets – not the kiss, though
Healy admitted he didn’t do enough research on the field before booking the shows. But still expressed dissatisfaction with the response.
“I made a mistake when we were booking shows. I wasn’t looking into it,” Healy told the Malaysian festival audience. “I do not see the point of inviting The 1975 to a country and then telling us who we can have sex with.”
The band is now done with their tour, and will be taking a break from performing.