According to the Star Online, Lamb of God's previously announced September 28 performance in Kuala Lumpur has been canceled after the band's concerts were deemed to be infringing on the religious sensitivities and cultural values of Malaysian society.
As Blabbermouth notes, the Department of Islamic Development of Malaysia (Jakim) last month raised objection to the show, claiming that Lamb of God's music is a mix of metal songs with the reading of verses from the Quran. The decision to cancel the concert was made Wednesday by the Communications and Multimedia Ministry at a meeting of the Central Committee on Applications for Filming and Performances by Foreign Artistes (Puspal).
Lamb of God, which was originally known as Burn the Priest, sparked controversy in the Christian community by "incorporating evil and anti-divine spiritual elements in its performance," Jakim's director-general, Datuk Othman Mustapha, said. Othman said the objection was in accordance with the decision of the Fatwa (Edicts) Committee that the practices and acts of black metal groups were misguided and contrary to the true teachings of Islam. Minister in the Prime Minister's Department, Datuk Seri Jamil Khir Baharom, also demanded the concert be banned, claiming that Lamb of God could cause "untold harm and moral decadence" among young people.
Former Perlis mufti Dr. Mohd Asri Zainul Abidin disagreed, telling the Star Online that "the people raising the objections should provide proof, such as lyrics, to show that the musical acts are truly objectionable and will negatively impact our society and culture."
He added: "A performance can be banned if proven to be unsuitable but not just because you don't like it."
Lamb of God was famously banned from playing the church-owned Forum in Los Angeles in 2005 because church leaders were offended by the group's previous name (Burn the Priest).
Photo is courtesy of Marc Nader