Music group OneFour seek legal advice after gig 'shutdown'
Controversial Sydney rappers OneFour claim their Melbourne show was cancelled after NSW police put pressure on the venue.
"Pressure from NSW Police has seen one concert cancelled," the group's management said in a statement today.
"OneFour management were informed shortly before the band's Melbourne show that despite there being no previous incident at a band concert, it would not proceed.
"Management believe this was at the request of NSW Police."
The statement added: "NSW Police have not provided any written reasons for why they have taken these steps. They have not engaged with or contacted OneFour management."
OneFour, from Mt Druitt in Sydney's west, was scheduled to play a sold out show at 170 Russell on Sunday night.
But, at the weekend, the rappers said the show was "cancelled at short notice … due to issues beyond our control."
The rappers said they were "devastated" by the decision. OneFour also claimed NSW had shut down three of their shows in Sydney this year.
The band fears their Adelaide show, set for Wednesday night, might also be in jeopardy.
OneFour performs so-called drill rap, a hardcore hip hop offshoot that originated in Chicago, and has been adopted by British rappers.
The band has released a string of singles and videos, racking up over 30 million streams, with raps including The Message and Ladz in the Hood.
Last year, the UK drill scene made headlines when police said it incited violence.
In a statement today, OneFour's management said: "OneFour's songs depict a life of adversity and conflict that few outsiders have access to but that has connected them to a wide and growing fan base.
"They have come out of one of the most disadvantaged postcodes in Australia and are on the
verge of being the first rap band to break into the US and UK music scene. That opportunity to transform their lives is now being denied."
Management said OneFour believes the safety of fans at their shows is "paramount importance."
The statement added: "That should not extend to police adopting a singularly youth-focused, fear-based censorship strategy. This sets a dangerous precedent in police ultimately determining which artists can and can't play at music venues in Australia."
It also raises "the issue of improper pressure from police to venue owners nationally as to the consequences if they don't agree to cancel shows."
Management said OneFour has sought the legal services of Simpsons Solicitors.
"The band is determined to seek a resolution of this issue," the statement said.
Confidential has sought comment from OneFour's tour promoter Live Nation, 170 Russell and NSW police.