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Friendly Fires hit out after their track is used at start of ‘Boris’ Johnson speech

By | Published on Thursday 7 October 2021

'Boris' Johnson

It’s party conference season in the UK at the moment, with members of the Conservative Party gathering in Manchester this week for some delusional back-slapping. As is customary, this led to another music-maker having to take to the socials in order to post their variation of the oft spoken line: “Some Tory cunt used my music and I’m really fucked off about it”. This year it was Friendly Fires.

It’s usually the headline act at these party conferences that earns the ire of at least one musician, it being the only aspect of the proceedings that the wider world actually tunes into. And, in these particularly crazy times in which we live, the headline act at the Conservative Party Conference is, of course, one ‘Boris’ Johnson.

By the way, for all you British readers out there, here’s a quick observation that will help you understand ‘Boris’ Johnson’s speeches. Never forget that, in order to gain power, Johnson created an entirely fictional version of the United Kingdom to sell to the voters. And since gaining power, it’s that fictional version of the United Kingdom that he’s been running. Remember that and his speeches make far more sense. I’m not sure who’s running the actual UK just now. A team of hamsters, maybe.

Anyway, while Johnson’s speech was all about and entirely aimed at the fictional country that only exists in the heads of him and the mediocre minds that make up his shit show of a cabinet, one thing that happened in the real world was that the Bullshitter In Chief walked on stage to Friendly Fires’ 2011 track ‘Blue Cassette’. Not sure why. ‘Blue’ is the colour of the Conservative Party I suppose. And like cassettes, I guess they are basically obsolete and never really worked.

As those paying attention will know, when music is played at political conferences, and when those political conferences are broadcast on the telly, that music is generally covered by the blanket licences issued to event organisers, venues and broadcasters via the collective licensing system. This means that there’s not much artists can do about having their music played out as some odious bullshitter walks to a podium to bullshit out some of his odious bullshit. Nothing except complain about it on social media, of course.

“We do not endorse the Conservative Party’s use of our track ‘Blue Cassette’. Our permission was not sought and we have asked our management to make sure it isn’t used again”, the band declared in an Instagram story. “If we’d have intended them to use it, we’d have named the track ‘Blue Bunch Of Corrupt Wankers'”.

They then added that if Johnson “needed something uplifting to walk on to” then he could have used “the sound of a busy food bank”, also posting a 2017 report of Conservative MP Jacob Rees-Mogg remarking how uplifting it was that so many British people now rely on food banks for survival.

And that brings to an end the 2021 edition of ‘Some Tory Cunt Used My Music And I’m Really Fucked Off About It’.