Entertainment

Mystery Jets forced to postpone album release and tour

Lead singer Blaine Harrison, who has spina bifida, was rushed to hospital on Saturday morning.

The Mystery Jets have been forced to postpone the release of their new album so their lead singer Blaine Harrison can undergo emergency surgery.

The tour in support of the British indie band’s seventh album, A Billion Heartbeats, will also be rescheduled for the start of 2020.

Harrison, who has spina bifida, was rushed to hospital on Saturday morning after suffering swelling in his thigh and a high temperature.

Doctors diagnosed an infection close to the bone which was at risk of spreading across the rest of his body, and scheduled him for an emergency operation.

Spina bifida develops during pregnancy when the bones of the spine do not form properly, creating a gap that leaves the spinal cord unprotected.

It can cause paralysis of the lower limbs.

In a statement Harrison, 34, said that when a similar incident occurred earlier this year he “made a plan to charge on” with the Mystery Jets’ summer schedule, but underestimated the toll that would take on his body.

Kai Fish and William Rees of the Mystery Jets
Kai Fish and William Rees of the Mystery Jets (PA)

He said: “It is with a lump in my throat that I bring you the following news from my bed at Chelsea and Westminster Hospital, a place that has been something of a home from home to me over the years.

“Early on Saturday morning I awoke with a swelling in my thigh and a temperature in the high 30s. Upon arrival at A&E I was put straight onto the emergency operation list to halt an infection close to my bone from spreading around my body.

“As some will know, I was struck down at the beginning of the summer under similar circumstances. Upon my release, I made a plan to charge on with our summer shows as well as in-stores around the album release and go in for follow-up surgery straight off the back of the November tour.

“In retrospect, perhaps I hadn’t taken into account how demanding the past couple of months would be on my body. This industry is not one that runs from 9-5, and as anyone trying to get their art out into the world will know, when it’s your baby, it is all-consuming and takes all that you’ve got.”

The Mystery Jets perform in St Thomas’ Hospital in Central London
The Mystery Jets perform in St Thomas’ Hospital in Central London (Alex/PA)

He concluded: “God bless the NHS.”

The band are vocal advocates of the National Health Service and recently performed for around 120 patients, doctors and nurses at St Thomas’ Hospital in central London, where Harrison has received treatment.

Synth-pop band Bastille were among those sending their best wishes to Harrison.

“Take care of yourself dude, us lot are very excited for the album when it comes,” they said on Twitter.

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