Sometimes I wonder why I buy concert tickets. I’m not a “band follower” in the sense that I don’t love any band per se. Well, not really, until I actually go to their concert. When someone tells me so-and-so band is performing at this-and-that venue, I don’t know how many albums they have, or more than 5 songs that they’ve performed, who their frontman is. I go to a concert to get converted I guess. I’ve been to concerts by Death Cab, Stars, Broken Social Scene (thanks Ying/Marcus/Yongzouk for your recommendations) as a complete noob and ended up well and truly inspired by their music. Stars especially, but that’s another story.
So… Came back from Metric last night. Until now I’m not even sure what the chain of events were that led me to buying the tickets. I think Marcus mentioned it over Facebook group chat and in predictably over-enthusiastic fashion I was like YES OF COURSE LET’S FREAKING DO THIS. I guess the relatively cheap price was a draw. 20 pounds for a ticket… They’re going to Singapore too and the best seats in the house are like, what, S$150?
I only knew three songs prior to this concert: Grow Up & Blow Away, Soft Rock Star, and Help I’m Alive. The first two they didn’t play because it’s really, really old and they’re in some new phase of electropop. The last I thought was actually entitled “Beating Like a Hammer,” until I checked the setlist at the end of the concert. So yes, I know, I’m a music noob. I listen to an eclectic range of bands but I can hardly be considered a music guru’s apprentice’s minion.
Well, as Stars sings, write what you know. This post is instead about my concert-going experience, though it’s probably applicable to all short people.
I constantly meet variants of the different groups I list below. Maybe that’s why I’m not so keen to go for mash-y concerts these days. I was perfectly keen to sit at the back of the O2 Empire to just listen and chill. I feel too… tired for the jumping and crowding these days. After a frustrating first-half of the concert, I was inspired to list all my pet peeves so I can weigh the pros and cons of dropping megabux on tickets next time.
In every concert you’ll find:
- The Tall Guys Coalition, who will always make it their top priority to stand in groups of 4-5 right smack in all corners of your peripheral vision. In today’s case, I didn’t even get to glimpse Emily Haines’ hand/foot/thigh till I decided to walk out of the crowd. Sometimes the TGC is made worse with the Jumping Bug, because what is even better than watching a sea of heads bop up and down continuously for 1.5 hours?
- The Drinker, who annoys the shit out of me because WHY MUST YOU BRING AN OPEN CUP TO A CLEARLY OVERPACKED FLOOR? WHY CAN’T YOU DRINK IT AT A BAR? OR AT LEAST SIP HALF YOUR DRINK SO YOU DON’T SPILL EVERYTHING ON THE FLOOR OR PEOPLE.
- The Fat Girl with a Backpack who is also a Camwhore. This is a little mean but well I was standing next to two of them today… Just imagine as you’re being pushed to the side by the jumping TGC and closer and closer to the Girl’s raised arm… THIS IS MEAN BUT THIS IS TRUE 🙁
- Hot Lesbians at the back of the theatre. Which is nice because they’re always the chillest and most well-dressed of the lot.
- Annoying Security Men (and Women). Aka Anti-Fun Police.
- TALKERS. For the first 10 minutes I’ll find their analysis of x-and-y’s band super interesting and indie then they’ll start talking about their law degrees and how much they want to be a barrister cos it’s such a challenging thing to do and I’m like, shut up shut up shut up. This situation is exacerbated when you realize said aspiring-barrister is actually a Singaporean with a convincing but still fake British accent, which is another one of my top pet peeves.
- Racist Nationalists. True story. On the way to the bar I missed a guy in my blind spot who was apparently waiting his turn for a long time. I’m not afraid to apologize if I’m in the wrong but this asshole turned to me and said the following (all of it true):
RN: There’s a line here, hello.
Me: I’m sorry, I didn’t see–
RN: In the UK, it’s called a queue.
Me: Really, you’re going to use that line now?
RN: You should thank me. I taught you something about the British today.
This is essentially an updated version of the “go back to where you came from” shit my dad dealt with occasionally when he was studying here. Last I check there weren’t any colonies left… Thankfully most of the Brits I’ve met here are super super nice, and do things like stop so I can take my photographs or help me carry my luggage up the Tube stairs. 🙂
Later I had a whole bunch of espirit d’escalier things going about but since my wits weren’t about me at the same time, I did what the natives ought to do and showed him what real shoving and pushing is about. Not proud of myself but dude, what an asshole.
- Sticky Pool of Death. Hopefully it’s just beer…
So Metric didn’t get off to a good start. But at least I really enjoyed the opening band, Chew Lips. I don’t know much about the band members per se, but their frontwoman, Tigs, is awesome and cute and has really funny dance moves. You can download a remix of “Do You Chew?” by Nick Zinner (of the Yeah Yeah Yeahs, another band I came to love after going to their show) here.
Just before the very last song, Emily Haines said something that stuck with me:
Well peeps, what do you think is gonna happen in the next 10 years or so? There’s an encroachment on our souls, but maybe that’s just me. Just remember, keep the love in your heart no matter how much mercury there is in your salmon.
So yeah, I’ll bear that in mind. I’m already starting to forget the idiot, haha.
And then they played this, except it was even more touching cos everyone sang along and it was like church, but not really.