Group refused entry to NZ

Tyler, the Creator' (back right) and the Odd Future at VGX 2013 in Los Angeles, California. Photo by Getty.
Tyler, the Creator' (back right) and the Odd Future at VGX 2013 in Los Angeles, California. Photo by Getty.
Hip-Hop group Odd Future has been refused entry into New Zealand after being deemed a threat to public order.

The group were meant to be playing at the Rapture hip-hop festival this Saturday.

Group member Tyler the Creator this afternoon tweeted the news:  "OF IS BANNED FROM NEW ZEALAND, AGAIN. THEY SAID WE WERE 'TERRORIST THREATS AND BAD FOR THE SOCIETY' OR WHATEVER. SICK. THEY ARE ANTI GOLF"

Manager Christian Clancy expressed his dissatisfaction at the immigration decision on Twitter.

"Sorry New Zealand apparently this group of kids that have inspired the shit out of me for the last few years are a threat to society,'' Clancy said.

"And thanks for the hour before flight heads up. After approving and issuing visas.''

The immigration ban comes days after sexual violence advocacy group Stop Demand emailed Auckland councillors, criticising the decision to allow the group to perform at the Western Springs event.

The email quoted several lyrics from Odd Future referencing rape.

Founder Denise Ritchie said yesterday, before the ban, the council should have made a stand against allowing the group to perform.

"It is astonishing that, in light of the nationwide outcry and soul-searching that arose over the Roast Busters' incident, and the sexual callousness of some young men towards women, Auckland Council is about allow a group that glorifies rape and rape culture to perform on Council-owned property and at an `all ages' event.''

Immigration NZ confirmed in a statement that it refused to allow members of the group to travel to New Zealand.

"The Immigration Act 2009 provides that entry permission may not be granted where there is reason to believe there is, or is likely to be, a threat or risk to public order or the public interest.

"Odd Future has been deemed to be a potential threat to public order and the public interest for several reasons, including incidents at past performances in which they have incited violence. In one instance, a police officer was hospitalised following a riot incited by Odd Future,'' the statement read.

The incident Immigration NZ appears to be referring to was at a Boston comic shop autograph signing session in 2011.

It was described in local news reports at the time as a '"near-riot'" with the injured officer treated and released from hospital for minor injuries after slipping and hurting his back.

One 13 year-old female was arrested for disturbing the peace after waiting fans became rowdy.

Tyler the Creator has had run-ins with American police since, being arrested for vandalising a Los Angeles venue's sound equipment during a show in late 2011.

Odd Future were replacing Kendrick Lamar at Eminem's Auckland concert set to be held at Western Springs this weekend.

The bill also includes J Cole and David Dallas. Lamar was unable to make the show, due to an "unavoidable scheduling conflict''.

Odd Future - which includes a revolving cast of up to nine rappers - was meant to include feature founding member Tyler, The Creator, and fellow rappers Hodgy Beats, Domo Genesis, Left Brain, Mike G and Taco Bennett. Earl Sweatshirt, who was just here for Laneway, wasn't expected to make the trip.

Odd Future were last here in 2012: they were set to perform at the Big Day Out, but had their performance axed after complaints their homophobic lyrics encouraged "bullying and violence''.

They denied they were homophobic, came anyway and performed an incendiary sideshow at Auckland's Powerstation the night before the Big Day Out, before performing all of the Australian dates without incident.

Complaints about hip-hop acts being homophobic are nothing new - Rapture's headliner Eminem has faced criticism throughout his career, most recently for the song Rap God from last year's album The Marshall Mathers LP II.

 

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