No Devotion bassist Stuart Richardson says the band’s recent troubles are nothing compared to what he went through with Lostprophets.
No Devotion have endured a week in which their label Collect Records – owned by frontman Geoff Rickly – parted company with main financial backer Martin Shkreli, the pharmaceutical magnate who became public enemy no.1 after raising the price of an AIDS drug by 5000%.
That was followed by an attack on Rickly in a Hamburg street during which he was robbed and poisoned, leading to the cancellation of a show and a night in hospital.
No Devotion were formed form the ashes of Lostprophets after that band’s frontman Ian Watkins was revealed to have committed a string of horrifying sexual offences against children and was jailed for 29 years. Richardson says the abuse directed at No Devotion for their links to Shkreli pales into insignificance in comparison.
He tells Alternative Press: “Trust me, I’ve seen worse, I’ve had worse said of me. I have a family and kids and I’ve been called everything. I don’t feel betrayed by Geoff at all. It’s just bad luck. Really bad luck. I don’t think Geoff didn’t dig hard enough on this guy, I don’t think he’s to blame at all. Shkreli seemed like he just wanted to put his money out there.”
Rickly admits he feels a responsibility towards his bandmates, as well as all the other acts on Collect. He says: “When this happened, it was like a double tragedy for me because once again the brilliance of their music and their hard work has been compromised by a scandal that is none of their doing. For me, that’s pretty hard. These guys are pretty cool about it. They’re like, ‘We’ve been through worse.’
“Collect have one more record that’s in the pipeline. It’s been manufactured already, it has a street date, it has everything going already so no matter what, you can’t say, ‘Stop’. It’s Wax Idols’ American Tragic, it’s coming out on October 16
“From there, I get to stop, reset and decide – do I have a future doing this label? Or do I need to get a job? You know, that was my job. So first of all, I need to find a new job. Also I have to place my employees somewhere because they quit other jobs to work with me.”