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Royal Blood’s Mike Kerr didn’t “mean any offense” with viral BBC Radio 1 Big Weekend festival performance

2022 Lollapalooza Day 2
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Royal Blood frontman Mike Kerr says he “meant no offense” with the band’s performance at the BBC Radio 1 Big Weekend festival last week.

As previously reported, Kerr took a moment during the duo’s gig to ask if anyone in the crowd of the mostly pop event was a fan of rock music. When met with a tepid response, Kerr commented, “Nine people, brilliant.”

“We’re having to clap ourselves because that was so pathetic,” Kerr said, before imploring one of the camera operators to clap for them. When Royal Blood’s set ended, Kerr walked off the stage with both middle fingers raised to the crowd.

Reflecting on his band’s viral-for-the-wrong-reasons performance, Kerr tells BBC Radio 1 he’s “amazed, honestly, at how that escalated to that kind of size.”

“Walking off from that show, I felt I was being entertaining in a way of trying to make light of the situation,” Kerr explains. “Perhaps I was doing a performance where I felt a little bit out of place. I expected to be a little bit bemused and maybe confuse a few people, but not to that kind of scale.”

Kerr adds that he “actually really enjoyed playing” the set and that his middle finger salute to the crowd was supposed to be more of a “pro wrestler” move.

“I felt like a sort of pantomime villain,” Kerr says. “I didn’t feel like I’d done anything morally wrong. I felt like a bit of a wind-up, honestly.”

“I don’t mean any offense,” he continues. “My intention is never to alienate anyone or push anyone away.”

Royal Blood will release a new album, Back to the Water Below, on September 8. They launch a U.S. tour in the fall.

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