"So, what, we're just casually accusing people of being a paedophile now for entertainment?": The 1975's Matty Healy rages against TikTok conversation before his band have festival set shut down for "non-compliance"

The 1975's Matty Healy
(Image credit: Kristy Sparow/Getty Images)

The 1975 had their set at the Good Vibes festival in Kuala Lumpur shut down on Friday (July 21) after frontman Matty Healy labelled the Malaysian government "retards" for upholding strict laws banning same-sex relationships, and called out TikTok users who engaged in an online conversation as to whether it was "appropriate" for him to be holding a close friend's child in a certain way.

"So, what, we're just casually accusing people of being a paedophile now for entertainment?" an understandably enraged Healy asked the Malaysian festival crowd. "Is that what we're doing? No? Well it fucking looks like it."

The 1975's set was subsequently curtailed, and after Healy's angry speech went viral, the rest of the festival was cancelled, with a statement from the organisers saying that the decision came as the result of an "immediate cancellation directive" from Malaysia's Ministry of Communications and Digital, based upon its "unwavering stance against any parties that challenge, ridicule or contravene Malaysian laws."

Healy's onstage speech began with an attack upon Malaysia's anti-LGBT laws, and an admission that, in accepting an invitation to play the festival, the band had made an error of judgement.

"I made a mistake," Healy admitted. "When we were booking shows, I wasn’t looking into it. I don’t see the fucking point, right, I do not see the point of inviting the 1975 to a country and then telling us who we can have sex with.

"I am sorry if that offends you and you’re religious and it’s part of your fucking government, but your government are a bunch of fucking retards and I don’t care anymore. If you push, I am going to push back. I am not in the fucking mood."

"If you're filming this on TikTok, I'm not in the fucking mood anymore," Healy continued, changing tack. "There was some TikTok the other day, where [after] I picked up a child that I love, who's a friend of mine, a friend of mine's child, and I put them down, and there was a TikTok conversation as to whether my finger placement was appropriate.

""So, what, we're just casually accusing people of being a paedophile now for entertainment? Is that what we're doing? No? Well it fucking looks like it."

"I'm not having a go at you," Healy said, pointing at the audience, "it's people filming this: it fucking looks like it. You don't casually insinuate that shit, I'm not in the fucking mood anymore.

"Unfortunately," the singer continued, "you don't get a set of loads of uplifting songs because I’m fucking furious. And that’s not fair on you because you’re not representative of your government. Because you are young people and I am sure a lot of you are gay and progressive and cool. So I pulled the show yesterday and we had a conversation and we said, ‘You know what? We can’t let these kids down because they’re not the government'."

Healy went on to kiss bassist Ross MacDonald as a protest.

Shortly afterwards, The 1975 quit the stage, with Healy telling the audience, "Alright, we just got banned from Kuala Lumpur, see you later."

The festival organisers subsequently put out a statement saying that the band's set was cut "due to non-compliance with local government guidelines."

Watch Healy's speech below:

Paul Brannigan
Contributing Editor, Louder

A music writer since 1993, formerly Editor of Kerrang! and Planet Rock magazine (RIP), Paul Brannigan is a Contributing Editor to Louder. Having previously written books on Lemmy, Dave Grohl (the Sunday Times best-seller This Is A Call) and Metallica (Birth School Metallica Death, co-authored with Ian Winwood), his Eddie Van Halen biography (Eruption in the UK, Unchained in the US) emerged in 2021. He has written for Rolling Stone, Mojo and Q, hung out with Fugazi at Dischord House, flown on Ozzy Osbourne's private jet, played Angus Young's Gibson SG, and interviewed everyone from Aerosmith and Beastie Boys to Young Gods and ZZ Top. Born in the North of Ireland, Brannigan lives in North London and supports The Arsenal.