A long weekend, and a good thing too. I spent Sunday evening at Dublin Castle, trying to see Muse in concert, with The Hives and The Revs. I won’t be going to one of these “festival” type concerts again. Why? Read on:
- Prices: After €25 to get in, they still wanted €2 for bottled water and €4 for a plastic glass of Heineken, which was a bloody cheek, since the whole event was sponsored by Heineken – they had a captive market.
- For safety reasons, the whole arena was divided down the middle. Given the amount of moshing that went on, it makes sense in retrospect. However, the front enclosure was allocated on a first-come first-served basis, using wristbands. Had I known this, I would have got there earlier, rather than be jammed into the “second class” section. By the time Muse hit the stage, there was a huge gap at the rear of the front section, and no attempt to fill it. This just angered the people in the front of the rear section, where I was…
- I spent most of Muse’s set playing impromptu bouncer, stopping various girls from getting crushed by the moshers. It’s not as if Muse play punk or heavy metal – they cover a wide dynamic range with some loud bits. So, why was I slammed from all sides by drunken louts, who could clearly only hear the bass, and nothing else? This moshing link leads to a funny site on the topic, which states, among other things, that getting hurt (or hurting others) is not the idea. The girls said “thank you”, but no more.
On the plus side, the sound wasn’t at all bad for an outdoor gig – loud and clear, not deafening, I could hear the bands well, yet still hear afterwards. I’m also pleased at the way I stood up to the whole experience – the worst I had was sore feet. Even my bladder played nice – over 5 hours without complaint.
Those of you who went to Woodstock or Glastonbury are probably going “what are you complaining about? We paid $10 for bottled water!” Sure, you’re right, but I’ve never seen such behaviour before, not even when I saw Black Sabbath at Sun City (in South Africa) 15 years ago, a concert which I think permanently damaged my hearing. On that occasion, I was carried from the middle to the front, without my feet touching the ground, but it was still safer than the moshing.