[rumori] Fwd: Shelter from Helter Stupid....Negboy confronted by friends of David Brom

From: Vicki Bennett (peoplelikeusATmistral.co.uk)
Date: Sat Mar 17 2001 - 22:54:12 PST

Forwarded from Mark Hosler:

>Feel free to post this to Snuggles or Rumori or anywhere else you want to -
>Tonight I was rather aggresively confronted for 2 hours at a party in
>Olympia by a guy who went to school and was good friends with DAVID BROM
>and his brother ( who wasnt killed as he was at a friends house).
>Remember our CD "Helter Stupid" and the hoax it was all about?? We blamed
>our cancelled tour on a real quadruple ax murder In Rochester Minnesota in
>a fabricated press release that claimed that our song "Christianity Is
>Styupid" somehow caused the murders. Teenager David Brom committed the
>actual murders, our hoax grew to epic proportions in the media, and we then
>made a record exposing the truth behind our prank.
>Anyway, this guy at the party was telling me how horrible we were for
>exploiting the murders and how our hoax affected their town. Wild....very
>difficult conversation . What I found out was that our rumor made it back
>to that town as THE TRUTH in a big way we never knew about!
>Here, after much questioning and endlessly trying to explain what we did
>and why to this guy, is what I was told -
>Rochester MN is a very small, very cut-off, very religiuos town. A week
>prior to the killings there had been a local story about murder and music
>and the connections between the two, and it was being discussed quite a bit
>already amongst worried parents. But get this - Davids brother Joe
>actually sold indy punk records out of their basement (!!!) and the guy I
>met at the party claims he actually *was* selling our records!! No kidding.
>David Brom was a straight arrow "GQ" kid, very very normal and nice,
>who , for some strange reason, happened to let a friend cut his hair into a
>mohawk the week before the killings. David did NOT like punk rock either.
>The Brom family was FANATICALLY religous, making David go to church
>literally almost every day.
>So when our story came out, you can imagine how it all "fit" together!!
>Crazy punk rock kid from good Christian family listens to crazy music and
>kills family, just like the mass media has been telling us all along. . It
>slipped perfectly into this stream of things in a town that was looking
>for an explanation of why something like this could happen in such a nice
>place. Tthe official story in town *literally* became that it was OUR
>RECORD ( Escape From Noise) that was on his record player when the
>killings happened! So our hoax succed in ways we could never have
>guessed! And our prank fueled the town and the parents fears that MUSIC
>was making thier kids crazy and violent. This lead to weird kids being
>kicked out of school ( including the guy who was confronting me) , being
>persecuted, beat up, etc.
>Incredible. Far weirder than anything we could ever make up!! I did mention
>to him that as much as we always realized that we WERE exploiting a real
>human tradegy, we were interested in dealing with how the media works and
>the medias *representation* of the events. Not " the truth". And that good
>art doesn't have to be "nice" to be good art. But apparently our rumor
>actually made things WORSE in the town for all the punk rock misfit
>kids.... it fed into all the fears already there.
> I am still very proud of that record we made, but this whole discussion
>was unsettling, to say the least! Did we cross a line we now wished we
>hadn't? If not, did we come close? I kept trying to explain to him that it
>was all an EXPERIMENT in the media to see what would happen- and then when
>it blew up into something bigger than we imagined, we tried to do something
>creative and responsible with the unexpected direction the whole thing
>took. This guy thought we should have known *exaclty* what was going to
>happen and we were bad for going ahead and doing it.
>And one more thing - David's brother Joe Brom was widely believed to have
>been the mastermind behind the killings as he was far more deranged than
>David ( and I have heard that he was quite crazy from other sources as
>So...there are apparently 3 different folks living in Olympia now who all
>knew Brom and they sure dont like Negativland...

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