I was at a gig the other night.
First time in a long time actually. I haven't been to a concert since Faith No More at a guess... that was quite a while ago. Generally there aren't a whole lot worth going to these days. I mean there are good bands playing and all, but it's just such an effort getting tickets now that it can all seem rather daunting, unless the band is somewhat obscure. There's never really "enough" tickets going about for gigs and I don't want to buy tickets off a scalper or someone who has just bought eight and only wanted two to begin with, just because they want to make a few quid off them. It's sad... people really are that pathetically greedy. So I guess they are scalping tickets too.
When you arrive at these concerts now, there are generally a bunch of motionless individuals who light up only for the band's one or two most popular songs... in which case the chorus of these songs fill the air. Then it's just the band for the verses. These are the "band-wagon" punters. I'm not sure this is a problem in bigger countries, but here in Ireland, chances are that a band will only play one show in Dublin and one show in Belfast before moving on, if we're lucky. There is fuck-all chance of catching a second or third night in most cases. So one must travel up from the country to see a show in Dublin or up to Belfast to catch the next. When someone goes to Aerosmith, say, just to hear "I don't wanna miss a thing" because it was popular for about five minutes and nothing else, real fans are left in the lurch because this band wagon fan just couldn't wait to hear their "favourite song" played on something other than a jukebox. Hey, I'm not against new fans going to gigs, but they gotta be singing along to at least one or two more songs at least, I feel.
Finally I would like to discuss my biggest gripe with gigs as I approach an age where ranting is justified. I used to be all for getting hammered when going to gigs, drinking while there or even smoking a joint or two in order to heighten the mood. But now I just think "What's the point?" or "what's the pint" even :P yeah yeah, bad joke. But anyway, I was at a really great gig the other night. The band was Band of Horses and it's my second time seeing them. The first time, they really did a fantastic gig. My friend and I were sitting on the balcony for that one, as luck would have it. I would definitely recommend sitting in balcony seats for the It's a great view and there is nothing between you and the musicians as it were. However... This time we were unfortunate enough to be standing in the crowd for this show. The band were still awesome... the set was flawless and the crowd sang along for most songs too. The band were in high spirits and joked about a bit too. It really was great...
apart from the nudging...
the relentless to and fro of the drinking crowd.
the splashing of booze all over my clothes.
Honestly... what a useless waste of time going to and from the bar at a concert. You spend ten minutes waiting to be served. Ten minutes trying to painfully ease through the crowd back to your mates to give them their drinks. The whole time trying to prevent others from spilling it and about another ten minutes or so trying to get through the crowd again to go to the bathroom because you need to pee after having so many drinks. So that's at least a half an hour of the gig spent on drinking alone and general time-wasting. Incidentally, I decided a long time ago that I wanted to actually remember any concerts I went to and fully enjoy them, So I no longer drink at gigs. Neither my friend or I drank at this one. The people we were standing beside even... you could see how irritating it was for them to have people shoving through every few seconds carrying beers around. It even got to me eventually and I had to move a few feet away. There should be a drinking section in concerts... a drinking section, a standing section and a seated section. I would go for the seating every time now, I have to say.
But all in all, it was a great concert excluding the folks who decided to waste thirty quid to push through the crowd and spill beer on everyone, spend their time pissing or queueing and irk the hell outta everyone else.
Incidentally, you don't need to spend thirty quid to have a shit time fighting through crowds to get drinks... just go to The Foggy Dew or Bruxelles for that.