The Chemical Brothers say touring in the US is “not really viable at the moment”
The Chemical Brothers have shared their concerns about the rising costs of touring, revealing that they aren’t planning any US shows in support of their new album because it’s “not really viable at the moment”.
Speaking to Billboard, the electronic duo’s Ed Simons said: “The costs have gone up so much. It’s just not really viable at the moment…
“I’m apologetic to the people who do want to see us that it is increasingly difficult for us to get to America because we have had the times of our lives playing there.”
The pair also commented on the state of touring post-pandemic and how they attempted to lower costs of their live touring production to make touring the US more affordable.
“[The production] originally came from the fact that we didn’t want to inflict [audiences with] just the two of us awkwardly standing with the synthesisers,” Simons said.
““So we wanted a big back job, but it’s just grown and grown, and now we’ve got these 40-foot clowns voicing the words.”
Earlier this year, it was revealed that the US Department of Homeland Security (DHS) was planning to raise touring visa fees for foreign acts by more than 250 per cent – laying out that the cost of acts arriving in the US to perform temporarily, would increase from the current rate of $460 (£375.23) to $1,615 (£1,317), with a longer term work visa jumping from $460 (£375.23) to $1,655 (£1,349).
The news was met with widespread uproar from the international music scene – with the new measures proving preventative for both new and established artists.
However, the plans were delayed in July for fears over the negative impact it could have on artists coming over to the States to tour.
Despite this change in plan, the costs of touring have still prevented several big name artists from being able to play shows in the US in recent months.
Santigold also had to cancel her Holified tour, citing difficulties with the inflation costs of touring and describing them as unanticipated and specifically citing the “skyrocket[ing]” price of “gas, tour buses, hotels, and flight[s].”
“We cannot get insured and most of the big bands doing arena shows, by the time they do their first show and rehearsals and get the staging and crew together, all the buses and hotels, you’re upwards $600,000 to a million in the hole,” he said back in April.
“To earn that back, if you’re doing a 12-show run, you don’t start to earn it back until the seventh or eighth show. That’s just how the business works. The trouble now is if you get COVID after the first show, you’ve [lost] that money.”