Not to dredge up this topic, but I've been processing since the news came out and just need to join in the collective venting. I'm in a similar situation as you, Graham. Matt's music was a fundamental part of my teenage years and beyond. Each album release has somehow come along at the perfect point in my own life, giving me the perfect thing to relate to and reflect upon at the time. My father liked to say MG was "the soundtrack of your life." He passed away back in May.
I've been to practically every show he's done in my town over the years - with my brother mostly, once with my dad, other times with friends. For the solo acoustic tour in 2006, my best friend and I missed out on tickets as cash-strapped pre-university students; we found tickets being scalped for a ridiculous markup on eBay, so my friend emailed him to highlight this to his management and dash the opportunistic jerk's schemes. Matt thanked us and, despite there being no request or insinuation to this effect, he had us put on the guest list for the show. We waited around to see if he would come out after the show but ultimately left without giving our thanks (and days later I heard about the hospitalization that would go on to inspire Hospital Music). I did eventually meet him at a VIP experience during the LOES tour and got to utter an awkward "thanks, you had such an impact etc" speech to him.
Another beloved artist in my life has been in a much more cut-and-dry situation. They owned up to the allegation, and it's honestly still hard to listen to most of their band's music, especially older and more sophomoric songs, and when I do listen to it, there are new meanings that denigrate what these songs once meant. That same best friend was much more attached to this band, and it took them years to be able to stomach listening to them again.
(Pausing here to add, none of this is to paint myself or other fans as any sort of victim, because that's absolutely not true. The victims here are the people who were harassed. The rest of us are just reckoning with our connection to an artist whose reputation has been tarnished. Any discomfort we have listening to the harassers' art pales in comparison to the pain caused by the actual crimes.)
My gut, knee-jerk reaction here was that "it couldn't be Matt." After years of reading his various writings - his manifestos on politics and the nature of the world, and his work with Amnesty International, helped open my eyes and make me a better citizen - I thought he wasn't capable of the heinous acts he was accused of. And it still doesn't seem like the best version of himself... but he's not. At the end of the day he's a rock musician who came up in the 90s. I've seen his own longtime bandmate leaving a show with a woman under each arm. His own words are right there in the threads of accusations, and I can see how this is the worst parts of him coming out. (Had it only been the cringey pick-up talk about orgasms, I would have thought the simplest explanation was that his account was hacked, but unfortunately it's so much more.)
When it comes to his exes, there is always some he-said-she-said element. There are undeniably some mental health issues at play (thanks to @daniel_v for that well-written post on that matter). But ultimately there were wrongs done that need atoning for. And I also don't want this to be the end of his career and legacy, as that "living ghost" tweet brought to mind.
I had stopped listening to MG when the news broke, mainly because I currently rely on online streaming services these days instead of my carefully curated physical or MP3 collections. I had to break that stance and listen to comfort songs when my dad passed in May, but beyond that I'm only just starting to get back to a place where I can throw on his music for background noise. And that's what prompted this self-indulgent post.