Tuesday, February 28, 2006

Belle & Sebastian at The Docks - Feb 25/06

Let me say some positive things first - I really enjoyed the band, they sounded great and played a nice long show, and New Pornographers (what I heard of them) were good too. The acoustics were good there too. Also, I do like the new album - not as much as previous ones, but then it's had only a week to grow on me so far. I know some people really don't like the new one, but I do, and they played a good mix of good and old, so yay.

But now on to the bad - the venue.

I had been to the Docks once before, but to be honest I had very little memory of it - Sisters Of Mercy five or six years ago - but what I did remember was it being standing only, concrete floor, and that was it.

No memory of it being crowded like a cattle stampede, so it must not have been a well-sold show! Also no memory of it being such a huge LONG BOX!

And how many tickets did they sell? I'm sure it was oversold - seemed like at least 500 more people in there than was legal or safe.

So yes, stupid.

Also, the most idiotic and dangerous thing: every other all-ages show I've been to, they give you a bracelet if you are 'of age' - here, though, they thought perhaps erecting METAL FENCES throughout the venue would be a good idea. Excuse me? Surely this was a SERIOUS SAFETY ISSUE! The tension this created due to pushing and shoving was on the verge of causing a riot - this could have easily ended up like that Who show in Cincinatti in '79, if someone had yelled 'fire' people would have died for sure.

Now, the Docks have set up video screens at the very back of the club, and they display the stage on them, if you're way in the back you can still see them - but back there the music is much quieter, so essentially you've paid $40 or so to WATCH TV - I mean, the screens are a good idea, without them lots of people might never even know there were live performers, but come on. And for those of us who actually braved the ridiculous crowds to get to the middle where the sound was really good, and were shorter than, say, 5'6", there was no chance of even seeing a single band member - so they could have used the big screen idea up there too.


I feel very badly for the people who made a big trip to come to this gig, at least I live here. One of my friends came in from south of Buffalo, AND he's in a chair, so he spent the whole gig at the back of the room watching TV.

So, B&S, I think you were wonderful, and the next time you tour I'll DEFINITELY go to see you - as long as you're not playing the Docks. If you are, I'll sadly have to pass.

(geez, I'm so glad I didn't get tix for Franz Ferdinand)

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