I had every intention of seeing the keyboard-and-drums indie-rock duo Matt & Kim Thursday night (June 14) at Subterranean. I was on the guest list. I had my camera at the ready… But a mosh pit intervened. That is to say, I felt so roughed up by the pushing, shoving fans in the Subterranean audience during the two opening bands that I just had to get out of that place and take a walk in the fresh night air. And so, I bailed out on this concert before Matt & Kim even took the stage.
And what about those opening bands? Well, first there was Dynamite Arrows, which played pretty straight-up punk rock. Seemed pretty good. The lead singer jumped out into the audience within seconds of starting the first song, and thus the moshing began. Things were not too bad from my vantage point during the Dynamite Arrows set, because all of the singer’s forays into the audience took a few feet to my right, keeping me out of the line of fire, so to speak. Still, there was a lot of body movement going on, and I just started to think, “Man, I’m too old for this…” A little bit of moshing goes a long way with me.
Some DJ’s were playing music between the sets, and a makeshift screen hanging above the Subt stage showed projections from a computer … most of which were annoyingly repetitious displays of the words “Dynamite Arrows” on top of a picture of Rambo. Stupidest concert visual effects ever?!?
And then came Hyper Viper, a more dance-oriented rock band (featuring at least one member of Dynamite Arrows). I think I liked some of the music, but I’m really in no place to judge because I was so distracted by the fact that I was caught up in a melee of people pushing one another. I spent most of the show with my body pinned against a stage monitor. After a while, I gave up on taking photos – after my camera got bumped into the side of my face as I was trying to take a shot. After that, I was mostly concerned about protecting my camera and lenses from getting damaged, and protecting myself from breaking some ribs or spraining some muscles. At one point, a guy (a photographer, for crying out loud!) decided to surf the crowd, and his move to ascend onto the crowd included kicking me in the face. That was about when I decided to leave. Did I mention people were also tossing full cans of beer at the stage?