Saturday, September 16, 2006

Tiny Leaders of Today -or- Why I Hate People

I went to a concert in Hoboken, New Jersey, last night where three bands, The Tiny Leaders of Today, Coyote, and Man Man, played. I had never been to Hoboken before, and I have to say that I was pleasantly surprised with what I was able to see of it. My friends and I even got free samples of frozen custard while walking the twelve or so blocks from the PATH station to Maxwell's, where the concert took place.

Doors weren't open until 9, and we got there at like, maybe 9:30 ish. As you can imagine, it was a late show. I mean, a late show is a standard thing to have on a Friday night, but this particular show featured a band of which two-thirds was comprised of eleven year old kids. To their credit, they didn't seem at all phased by the late hour of their performance.

The Tiny Leaders of Today were a pretty great band. They had their own songs which, though I don't know any titles, featured lines like "Baghdad, Brooklyn, Boise, Buffalo/Riot, riot, riot on the radio," and "Disco bomb [my friend Craig thought they were saying mom - who can be sure] has got it going on," which are better than most of the shit you hear people saying in music these days. They were entertaining, they had a good proto-punk wecan'tplayourinstruments kind of vibe, which suited them fine.

What bothered me was the fact that I was going to go home and write about them. As much as they probably think that that's cool and that's what they're going for by being in a rock band, it is kind of scary to me how much influence random computerized people can have these days in shaping what happens to people who are trying to make music. And bands like the Tiny Leaders of Today are especially vulnerable because, first off, they're eleven, and secondly, because they are essentially a novelty act. It will be so easy for the ruthless hype-mongers to say, "hey look at these kids! they sound like the Thermals! i love the Thermals! these kids are great!" only to realize a little later that they've sort of fucked with these kids lives. Basically, I hope these kids are ready to deal with some adult size bullshit.

Coyote sucked. I don't want to explain it.

More important than Coyote and how much I didn't like them was the fact that after their set this group of three guys showed up next to me in the crowd and started talking way way too loudly about stupid shit and yelling at Man Man as they set up.

Every single time it never fails it never fails. Why is it, when I go to a concert, especially a concert on the weekend in the New York area, I find myself holding in the anger I feel towards much of the rest of the audience rather than feeling the anticipation, excitement, and joy that's supposed to be the whole point of this thing called live music? C'mon man. Funk Dat!

I realize I'm becoming an old man, and sort of have been an old man for a few years now, but drunk/drug addled people at rock concerts have really begun to make me hate people. In my mind there is some sort of social contract, the kind you feel when you walk into a symphony or opera, I suppose, with rock concerts. Of course, there isn't actually any sort of social contract with rock concerts, which is one reason I like them, but still. I can't help but feel offended every single time I go to a concert and see people who are there solely to a) socialize (christ! could you find a worse place to try to have a conversation?!) b) get drunk (it's cheaper and a hell of a lot less annoying to buy a 30 pack of Coors Light, take it back to your apartment and throw it down your mouth there rather than scream like a fool and fall over on me in a crowded room while I'm trying to listen to something) c) be hip.

Funk Dat.

Man Man was good nay great, I got to utilize my basketball skills by boxing out some tripped out idiot who was trying to push to front of the stage and having no success, and the guys who were being assholes in between sets turned out to just be big fans who were a little drunk and loud and harmless.

I guess that isn't as much of a concert review as it is me bitching about what going to concerts has become in this country, but really, by the time Man Man's set ended I had pretty much forgotten about being mad. Take that as a compliment, Man Man.

Also, on my way back to the train I got to see a guy get pissed for no reason and tear down a banner in front of the frozen custard place that had given us free food on the way into town. Assholes, as it turns out, are all around us. I just sometimes tend to forget that.

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