Hawthorne Heights have left their record label, Victory Records, and have filed a suit against CEO Tony Brummel, claiming the label “severely damaged the band’s reputation and relationship with their fans,” according to reports. The suit, filed on Monday (August 7) in the District Court of Northern Illinois, said Brummel’s “overly-aggressive, unethical and illegal schemes and tactics” hurt the band’s standing among fans. Among the issues that solidified the band’s decision to leave the label is the debacle that occurred surrounding a letter Brummel sent to fans on the eve of the release of the band’s album, If Only You Were Lonely, suggesting fans buy HH’s album instead of rapper Ne-Yo’s to help save “ROCK” (read more).
In a post on the band’s official site, HH called Brummel “a man whose greed knows no bounds,” and said the letter he sent to fans was “greed driven” and resulted in the band being “branded as racists by some.” As for why they didn’t say anything earlier about the treatment they were allegedly receiving from Victory, the band wrote, “like being in an abusive relationship, we let certain things slide as we were afraid, as many of the bands on Victory are, to stick our neck out for fear of being ‘beaten,’ in this case represented by the threat of not being promoted, as has been the case with certain bands on the roster. We’re done being abused.”
The band might have to endure life at the label a little longer, though, according to a statement from Victory’s litigation counsel, Robert Meloni. “The lawsuit filed by Hawthorne Heights have no merit whatsoever,” the statement read. “Victory Records fully expects Hawthorne Heights to honor their commitment to deliver two additional studio albums to Victory pursuant to their recording artists agreement with Victory.”
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