Lostprophets Scandal & Spotify Controversy Explained

By Nathan Johnson Posted:
Lostprophets singer Ian Watkins

Years after the rock band's initial scandal, the band Lostprophets found themselves in the spotlight of controversy once again, this time concerning Spotify.

Lostprophets was a rock band from Wales that was formed in 1997 by lead vocalist Ian Watkins and lead guitarist Lee Gaze.

The band saw decent success throughout the 2000s and won six Kerrang! Awards before controversy struck the band, centered around Watkins.

Lostprophets Controversy Explained

Lostprophets Last Train Home Music video

In December 2012, Lostprophets lead singer Ian Watkins was arrested, and the details of what took place would go on to make up one of the most disturbing and horrific crime sprees in history.

Initially brought in for drug possession, Watkins' charges quickly became more sinister after Welsh police conducted a search of his home and his computer.

According to the police report, they found multiple indecent images of children stored on his computer. This led to Watkins being officially charged with conspiracy to engage in sexual activity with a one-year-old female, possession, creation, and/or distribution of indecent images of children, and extreme pornography involving animals.

Watkins' trial began on November 26, 2013, where the Lostprophets lead singer pleaded guilty to attempted rape and sexual assault of a child under the age of 13, three counts of sexual assault involving children, six counts of taking and/or possessing indecent images of a minor, and one count of possession of an extremely pornographic image involving a sex act with an animal.

According to the transcript of the court hearing during sentencing, authorities found roughly 90 indecent photos of children ranging from ages 2 to 14.

Shockingly, Watkins was only sentenced to 29 years in prison and will be eligible for parole in 2031.

What may be just as shocking and disturbing as the controversy caused by Watkins is that the Welsh police department was made aware of Watkins' actions as early as 2008.

This means that the Lostrophets lead singer was abusing minors for at least three years after reports were first given to authorities. According to higher-ups in the Welsh government, the figures involved who chose to not take action or investigate have been disciplined since.

Was Lostprophets' Music Removed (and then Added Back) from Spotify?

In the 2010s after Watkins' conviction, many fans noticed that Lostprophets' entire library (aside from one album) had been taken off of Spotify.

Fans didn't know if Spotify had taken the band's music down due to the controversy surrounding Watkins or if it had to be taken down based on some legality, but it was gone nonetheless.

As of May 12, 2024, only one song ("Prior Talk") appeared under Lostprophets' official page on Spotify.

However, sometime recently, nearly all of the band's music was mysteriously added back to the platform, only furthering the controversy surrounding the band and Watkins.

Many believe that since Watkins committed such horrific crimes, some of which while he was writing and recording music for Lostprophets, the platform should not support and/or promote the band's discography.

However, others voiced that the other members also worked extremely hard on the music and they don't deserve to be blacklisted because of one person.

It is important to note that the other band members claimed to have absolutely no knowledge of Watkins' actions.

While impossible to know if they are totally telling the truth, it has been documented that Watkins, especially from around 2007 until his arrest, wanted nothing to do with the other band members.

He reportedly always stayed in a different dressing room than the others, did not travel with the band, and went back to Wales while the others lived in Los Angeles.

The true reason why Lostprophets' music was pulled from Spotify has never been revealed to the public, but it was documented that music under the Visible Noise label (Lostprophets' recording label) was not licensed to be streamed in the United States for some time.

So, it is possible that the licensing issues are why Lostprophets' music was not on Spotify for a long time and the fact that, at one time, only a six-song album was on Spotify only furthers that theory.

To explain, the rights to the six-song album (titled Weapons) that was on the streaming platform were not owned by Visible Noise, but rather Sony. Sony decided to renew the rights, which is why it remained on Spotify, and it is likely that Visible Noise did not renew the rights to the other music from Lostprophets.

It is worth noting that, as of writing, Weapons is no longer on Spotify while all of Lostprophets' other music is.

- About The Author: Nathan Johnson
Nathan is a writer at The Direct where he covers Star Wars, the MCU, and DC news. He joined The Direct in April 2021 and currently writes news and feature articles about all three brands mentioned above, but his main specialty is his knowledge about anything and everything Star Wars.