The Black Lips Get Kicked Out Of India
Like the Sex Pistols’ January ’78 tour of the Deep South, The Black Lips recent expedition to India was marked by a series of fairly seismic culture shocks. Everything from bottle-throwing fans at a gig in Pune, to livid show promoters in Chennai, all in response to a bunch of full-frontal punk rock provocateurs from Atlanta. For those that still haven’t heard the story, the band was booked to play on India’s equivalent of American Idol, The “Campus Rock Idol” Tour, a big-ticket televised series with large corporate sponsors. Last Saturday, in Chennai, the band entertained the crowd with what stateside fans would consider a typically raucous Black Lips show, replete with intra-band lip locking, and Cole de-pantsing, mooning the crowd, and attempting to play his six-string with, well, his privates. Barely okay in America, definitely NOT okay in India, the band was subsequently chased out of the country and the sponsors pulled the plug, effectively canceling the rest of the tour and the television season. The events have caused an international wave of news coverage, rounded out by everything from defensive “It’s only rock n roll” stories to meatier pieces that tease out the more nuanced concepts at play here, namely artistic freedom versus cultural respect.
Considering the wealth of information – some accurate, some not so much – that washed up on American shores after the event, it’s fortunate that VBS.tv cameras were there to document what transpired. Over the coming weeks, VBS will be running a series entitled “The Black Lips in India,” which faithfully documents the band’s turbulent experience before and after the Chennai gig, their escape to King Khan’s pad in Berlin, and beyond. The (100% NSFW!) trailer for the series — which captures every bit of Cole — is now available on VBS.tv.
Watch The Trailer For Black Lips In India:
Read The Letter Cole Alexander Sent After The Escape
Read The Vice Interview With Drummer Joe Bradley
The Lips are currently gearing up for a multi-month North American tour in support of their forthcoming third Vice release, 200 Million Thousand. Last week, amidst all the hubbub, the band offered up the single “Short Fuse” for free to fans. The album is due February 24th, and is now available for pre-order through Amazon at the link below.
Download And Share “Short Fuse” From The Black Lips’ 200 Million Thousand [Vice Records; February 24th, 2009]