Name change: Viet Cong is now Preoccupations
The torches and pitchforks can finally be put away.
Calgary band Viet Cong has announced they have officially retired the divisive name and will move forward with the new moniker Preoccupations.
“After finishing our latest record and taking some time off, we are excited to announce that we will be performing and recording as Preoccupations going forward,” the band said in a statement.
"We will be previewing new material from a forthcoming record in a series of festivals and shows in North America and Europe in the coming months.
"We apologize to those who were adversely affected by our former band name. This was never anticipated nor our intent. We are artists and not politicians, we understand that the name reflected pain to some individuals and we are happy to change it and move on and focus on our music.
“Thanks to all our friends and fans. See you all soon.”
The move comes after months of controversy that saw shows cancelled, protested, online petitions, debates and criticism from peers and fans who said the original name represented everything from cultural appropriation to flat- out insensitivity on the part of the quartet. Even a promise to change their name didn’t put the dispute to rest, when summer festivals prematurely announced Viet Cong on their bills.
Not that it adversely affected how the foursome’s music was received — the band’s 2015 self- titled debut was one of the year’s most acclaimed, earning them a spot on the Polaris Music Prize’s shortlist and a Juno nomination for Alternative Album of the Year, which they eventually lost out to former local act and fellow labelmates Braids.
In one final bit of sass, their of- ficial Twitter handle, @vietcongband, is now a Drake Fanpage
Here’s the list of summer dates that will help in the rebranding of Preoccupations: May 28: Sasquatch Festival — George, Wash. June 13: Baby’s All Right — Brooklyn, N.Y. June 17: Best Kept Secret Festival — Hilvarenbeek, NL June 18: Out Loud, Beursschouwburg — Brussels, Belgium June 22: Shacklewell Arms — London, England June 23: Old Blue Last — London June 28: Olympic Cafe — Paris June 30: Urban Spree — Berlin July 2: Castle Palooza — Tullamore, Ireland July 9: Ottawa Blues Festival — Ottawa Aug. 27: FYF Fest — Los Angeles, Calif. Oct. 8: Danforth Music Hall — Toronto