Animal Collective have been touring the United States in support of their recently released Painting With, and most recently they stopped in Asheville, North Carolina. There, the group decided to go forward with their show rather than cancel it in protest of the recently passed anti-LGBT House Bill 2. Instead, they chose to use their platform (the stage!) to speak out about the bill, and have now released two live albums to benefit Progress NC, a charity that hopes to keep North Carolina progressive and is actively working to have House Bill 2 reversed.
All of this was announced by the band in a statement this afternoon, and the two albums are available on Bandcamp on a pay-what-you-want model. The band’s decision to carry on with the show and to turn the performance and their music into a platform for change is similar to what was done by Cyndi Lauper, Father John Misty, and Mumford & Sons, who donated proceeds to North Carolina charities.
North Carolina now faces having federal funds withheld due to the discriminatory nature of the law, which states that transgender people must legally use the bathroom that corresponds to the sex that is found on their birth certificate. The law also states that LGBT folks can’t take legal recourse if they’ve been fired from their job/withheld services because of their sexual orientation. The NC government is suing the U.S. Justice Department, saying that the decision to withhold funds is an “overreach.”
More on the HB2 situation as it develops, but, for now, read Animal Collective’s statement below.
Last night, Animal Collective performed at The Orange Peel in Asheville, NC. For those who were at the show, you may have seen a table set up for Progress NC, who we were introduced to by NC Needs You (ncneedsyou.com). They (progressnc.org) are an organization ‘dedicated to being a voice for forward-thinking North Carolinians who want to protect the balanced approach to government.’ Recently, North Carolina passed a law, known as HB2, that dictates which bathrooms transgender people are permitted to use and attacks the rights of LGBT citizens to sue when their human rights are violated in the workplace. We felt that canceling our show, like many others have done in protest of this law, would be a disappointment to our fans and decided to go on with the performance. That being said, we don’t condone or agree with any type of bigotry or discrimination. This year, we’ve been recording and mixing some of our live shows. In an effort to raise awareness and help those fighting for equality, we are making two of our favorite recent shows available for download in a ‘pay what you want’ model. To listen to/download shows from March 9, 2016 at The Fonda in Los Angeles, CA or April 13, 2016 at The Ritz in Manchester, UK please visit anmlcollectve.bandcamp.com and donate what you’d like to contribute to Progress NC. All proceeds from these downloads will go to that organization. Thanks!