Hookworms: abuse allegations against ex-frontman Matthew Johnson withdrawn

The musician Alanna McArdle has formally withdrawn allegations of sexual and mental abuse made against former Hookworms frontman Matthew Johnson in October 2018 on behalf of another woman, known as L.

He in turn has withdrawn his libel lawsuit against McArdle.

In a statement posted to Twitter, McArdle wrote:

Johnson has not published any comment.

McArdle had alleged that L suffered abuse from Johnson during a romantic relationship they had in 2016. Johnson denied the original allegations.

Court documents from March 2020 show that Johnson was suing McArdle and L for libel and malicious falsehood, claiming serious injury to reputation and “personal injury, distress and humiliation, along with loss and damage”.

After the allegations became public, the other four members of Hookworms announced that the band would cease to exist, and cancelled all their upcoming shows.

The Leeds-based five-piece psychedelic rock band were signed to Domino. Their third and final album, Microshift, peaked at No 18 in the UK albums chart.

Johnson has also worked as a producer for artists including the Ordinary Boys, Frankie and the Heartstrings, Eagulls, Martha and Menace Beach and ran the now-defunct Leeds recording studio Suburban Home.

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