Over the past decade and a half, Bring Me the Horizon have established themselves as a household name within the heavy music community, but they haven’t always been so respected. Oli Sykes recalled that when the group first gained popularity, they were described “as a bunch of Motley Crue-style fucking assholes”.
The discussion came in a thoughtful interview with Kerrang!, where Sykes explained that BMTH was portrayed negatively by the media – even though he felt they didn’t deserve such respect.
“Our band was kind of called a band of Mötley Crüe-style fucking assholes,” the frontman said. “One of the first interviews I did, the guy twisted every word. Things that were said as a joke were presented as if I was saying it in anger, and it was just a huge shock to me. that we were portrayed as those people. I thought I was a nice guy, and there were all these magazines that said I wasn’t. It was amazing how twisted your words could be in some way. something you didn’t want to say, and I had a hard time with that.
Sykes added that he has become a polarizing figure due to his reputation.
“People painted me like an idol or I was fucking hated. You’re the guy on the cover and it’s photoshopped and put in the best light, but you can never look like that. And you’re not no longer that horrible, evil person, you’re just an ordinary person who makes mistakes like everyone else – but no one thinks you’re an ordinary person. You’re either a c–t or a god. He’s a real head-turner.”
Despite the criticism the band endured in its early years, the singer admitted that he felt really bad for new artists trying to establish themselves now, not least because of the role social media played in the success of somebody.
“Most labels want you to do sketches for TikTok, or think about your social media presence, and that alone is a full-time gig. I can’t imagine what it would be like to be a new artist and have that responsibility,” Sykes said. “It’s not just about making music, it’s also about being an actor, almost. I watch it with my wife [Alissic] now, and it’s crazy.
Bring Me the Horizon will spend the summer touring Europe, then head to North America for a fall tour, kicking off with a performance at the Louder Than Life festival in September. Joining them as openers throughout the race will be Knocked Loose, Grandson and Siiickbrain. See dates here.