There were a lot of people surprised last week when Van Halen postponed a large chunk of their summer tour dates. Former frontman Sammy Hagar isn’t one of them. “I’m surprised it took this long,” he told the Associated Press. “I predicted this was going to happen a lot sooner. I lost money on that bet!” Yet if the cause of the tour delay is acrimony within the band, that’s not the public stance they’re taking. In fact, the band sent frontman David Lee Roth and his dog Russell to do some damage control. In a video titled “Public Relations,” Roth explains that while the band is “winning, but our schedule has been sidelined for unnecessary roughness.” He further explains that with their touring cycle set to last 2 years, the band doesn’t want it to turn into the “robot zombie” tour.
Whether you believe Van Halen’s official statement or Rolling Stone’s sources that claim the band hate each other, at least they’re getting out in front of the story. But if the source of the postponement is friction within the band but they’re still putting on a brave face and claiming exhaustion, then their current album title could be an apt description of what’s going on.