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Istanbul Listening Party for Radiohead’s ‘A Moon Shaped Pool’ Reportedly Attacked

Video footage and witnesses suggest that 20 men stormed the record store with metal pipes and glass bottles

Update: Radiohead have responded to the attack on their Istanbul listening event:

Our hearts go out to those attacked tonight at Velvet IndieGround in Istanbul. We hope that someday we will be able to look back on such acts of violent intolerance as things of the ancient past. For now, we can only offer our fans in Istanbul our love and support.

Today across the world, Radiohead held a series of record store listening events for their new album A Moon Shaped Pool, including specially curated playlists, games, and limited-edition vinyls. However, reports out of the one event held in Turkey — in Istanbul, to be specific — suggest that things took a violent turn when the event was stormed by angry men who attacked those in the record store. Warning: The footage below may be difficult to watch.

According to the video’s uploader — who ripped the footage from a Periscope of the event — it occurred at the “promotion event at Velvet Indieground in Istanbul Turkey. June 17, 2016, around 21:00 (local time) a group attacked and beaten up the shop owner, manhandled the visitors and vandalized the store.”

A Reddit thread about the attacks suggests that the attackers may have been motivated by strict religious beliefs: “Just because of Turkey is in Ramadan (fasting) month and that crowd drinking beer, having fun around the store and it’s forbidden to drink alcohol and stuff in Ramadan time for f**king muslims!” One commenter claims he was the attendee Periscoping at the time of the attack, and says the following:

i was one of the hosts. i am the person that’s speaking in that video. i am the owner of that periscope account. they were determined to kill us. we were beaten by more than 20 men with pipes in their hands, beer bottles were broken on our heads, i don’t even know how we made it out. i will share the details later guys. just hoping that noone will die

Another commenter on the Istanbul event’s Facebook page offers the following information:

The store manager Seogu Lee and many guests including young women have been injured, some seriously. Seogu, the Korean store manager, has disappeared and his whereabouts is unknown. Around 10 pm, between 20 and 25 men all of a sudden started beating up the guests, some of whom had been standing inside and some outside the Velvet Indieground music store, drinking beer and other refreshments. Then the thugs entered the store kicking and punching the guests and destroying the records and the equipment. There was at least one ambulance, but no police. It is rumoured that one person is dead.

SPIN has reached out to an attendee of the event for further information and will update as we learn more. At publication time, Radiohead’s representatives had no comment on the matter.

Tags: radiohead