Friday, July 16, 2010

Rockin' Out: Heartless Bastards @ Bowery Ballroom 07/15/10

A crappy picture to accompany a review of a crappy show.

I've seen the Heartless Bastards multiple times. Twice in Austin and twice in the New York City area. They are a fine band and always put on a quality performance. I suspect that they might have done the same last evening, but it was hard to tell because I couldn't hear the band over all the meaningless drunken conversations happening while the band was playing. I might be old fashioned, but I am of the opinion that one goes to a rock show to watch and LISTEN to the band. I don't understand the point of paying for the ticket (and Ticketmaster's obnoxiously high service fees) to stand around and have a drunk conversation that you could have with your friend at a bar before and/or after the show. Sure, of course you are going to talk a little bit when you are watching a band because you want to share opinions on the show and/or band or simply say "I LOVE THIS SONG". A show doesn't demand complete silence like a trip to the movie theater does, but chit chatting through an entire show disrupts the people around you and their enjoyment of the show.

The worst part about last evening was the drunk hipster in his trucker hat intentionally bumping into people with (I presume) the hopes of getting into an altercation. After he tried to provoke me three times, I had to go to the downstairs bar and call it quits on the evening. Missed the last eight songs of the set.

So, in closing, great band, but this show was ruined by a rude, inconsiderate audience. And this is the third time I've had a similar experience at Bowery Ballroom this year. I am done with this venue. The good news is that their sister venue in Brooklyn, Music Hall Of Williamsburg, usually books the same bands that play Bowery when they come through town, so I will simply go there to enjoy a show.


LG said...

I got there a damn hour early to get in front of the stage. Once the Heartless Bastards went on, my friend and I got pushed out of the fucking way. Trying to push back was met with resistance and extremely pissed off people, so we backed off. I'm tall, but my friend isn't and now she couldn't see the stage.

So, we went up to the balcony. Better view, better sound, and the people didn't talk.

I think the secret to enjoying the Bowery is getting there early, and getting a spot on the balcony. Also, the people up there spilled their beer a little less.

Seriously though, what the fuck is up with these drunk assholes spilling beer all over everyone? Not even Terminal 5 was as bad as this show.

Anonymous said...

Funny thing is I had a similar experience at the Music Hall in Williamsburg at Delta Spirit. Same type of atmosphere with frat boys who think they are cool acting like asses. One of them pushed me out of the way without seeing who I was. I am a fairly mean looking older guy so that shit was tamed very quickly.

I actually prefer the Bowery over the Music Hall for shows. But either way, there are a lot of assholes attending shows.

Derek said...

I feel your pain - had a similar experience at Bowery when My Brightest Diamond played there. When I asked the flock next to me to quiet down because "they may not have noticed we're at a concert" a dude with them started screaming as if he was being assaulted. I don't understand, especially at Bowery, just hang out in the bar downstairs if you don't care about the music...

Anonymous said...

I have had this experience WAY too many times in NYC. One particular memory from the Bowery Ballroom was during a Hope Sandoval show. FUCKING MAZZY STAR and some jackass wants to fight me when I politely asked him to stop bumping into me. And as for the talking, I agree. Twinemen played a show at Mercury Lounge and they actually ended their set early because half of the audience was talking louder than the band was playing - and they were the HEADLINERS! SHUT UP OR STAY HOME!

DICK TUDOR said...

I saw Warren Zevon at Bowery Ballroom in 2001 or 2001 maybe and a fight broke out during his set. He stopped the show and was like "Really?!?!? A fight at one of MY shows?!?!? Really?!?!?!?" It was funny how he handled it and he lightened the mood pretty quickly. But still, a fight at a Warren Zevon show (just him solo, no backing band nonetheless) is just ridiculous. Must be something in the beer they serve there that gives people a jerk complex!

D.Proper said...

I can't agree with these comments enough. So many NYC concert-goers behave as though the artists on stage are background music to their inane (and uninteresting) conversations. It's as if they're just at the show so they can brag to their friends the next day, "I was at the [insert cool band here] show last night and it was so awesome!" So sick of these d-bags.

On a positive note, the good people at NYCTaper recorded both nights and have them up on their website. Not quite the same as being there, but it's a good listen.

Music Hall -

Bowery -