Blink-182 fans have had a whirlwind 24 hours.
Early Monday, bandmembers Travis Barker and Mark Hoppus issued a statement announcing they had drafted Alkaline Trio’s Matt Skiba for their headlining performance at an Orange County Festival after guitarist/vocalist Tom DeLonge was sitting out “indefinitely.”
“Actually, I was on the phone discussing a possible Blink-182 event in New York City when I heard the ‘news.’ The ONLY truth here is that I have commitments that limit my availability this year,” his statement read. DeLonge called the earlier announcement “weird” and questioned its legitimacy on social media.
And then things got messy. After DeLonge’s rebuttal, Barker and Hoppus pulled the trigger and did an interview to Rolling Stone – and it wasn’t pretty.
In the interview DeLonge is blasted as “ungrateful and disingenuous” and Barker went as far as saying the band only reunited from its previous hiatus because of the 2008 plane crash that he survived.
Barker and Hoppus also detail the lengths they went to try to satisfy DeLonge in order for him to commit to making new music and blew the lid off a number of deep rifts with DeLonge that seemingly stretch back to their hiatus a decade ago.
Among the revelations: Neither had spoken to him personally in months, with all communication going through e-mail; DeLonge would record the album only if they landed a major deal (he didn't want to spend his own money to record); Barker and Hoppus have been trying to record an album for the better part of two years.
They also confirmed that DeLonge didn’t technically quit the band, but they were tired of covering for him.
“It's hard to cover for someone who's disrespectful and ungrateful,” Barker said. “You don't even have the balls to call your bandmates and tell them you're not going to record or do anything Blink-related. You have your manager do it. Everyone should know what the story is with him and it's been years with it.”
Blink is headlining the final day of the three-day MusInk Tattoo & Music Festival, which Barker co-owns. The festival is set for March 20-22 at the Orange County Fair & Events Center in Costa Mesa.
"When Tom finally said, 'I'm not going to go into the studio or play this show,' it was kind of a gigantic relief because at least he finally said it. But to then say, 'I didn't quit the band,' it's just not true. It's disingenuous," Hoppus added. "I just wish Tom does whatever makes him happy and stops holding Blink-182 back from what we all agree that we're going to do: play shows, record music, continue this legacy and have a good time doing it."
Read the rest of their interview here.
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