As a music lover, I've been to A LOT of shows - huge sold out stadium shows, tiny bar shows with a handful of people, awesome shows that lived up to and exceeded all expectations and shows that were great but for a reason I never could have anticipated. But this isn't about those shows...this is about the AWFUL shows. The shows that make you feel like you wasted your time and money...the ones that leave a pit in your stomach and may even make you dislike a band that you used to love. Sometimes its the band, sometimes other factors but no matter what the cause these shows were terrible. These are my top 10 horrible shows.*
3. Guns N Roses - Hilton Colosseum, Ames 2006
With the loss of Izzy as a member and song-writer the band and Axl specifically continued to decline. You just knew something was wrong when Axl started wearing a kilt and an umpire's chest protector. I never understood this...I think he was trying to be a trend setter or something even through his style of leather and a t-shirt was already awesome. I mean you knew he was kind of a vain douche when he walked out of the St Louis show because someone had a camera and the Montreal show after Hetfield was burnt...but his outfits and behavior just became bizarre. I saw Guns N Roses a couple times on the Use Your Illusion tour and each time it was a very good show. I'm not sure if they are in my top ten favorite shows, but they are close (especially Omaha). And then there was The Spaghetti Incident. What a piece of shit. When the band claims it to be not a real Guns N Roses album, you know it is going to be bad.
|Seriously? Everyone knows you are|
balding, just accept it.
|So close but so far...it was much colder than the day this was taken.|
|Didn't really say rock show to me. |
The show has been going on the third hour and the crowd is getting restless and drunk. Another lengthy stage switch over and up next was Sebastian Bach. I was very glad for the long change over this time as the Buffalo fries had made my guts start to cramp and I knew I had to find a bathroom. There happened to be only one small bathroom available to fans on Hilton's floor level...and it was very small - one urinal, one stool. This was pretty poor planning as over a third of the crowd was on the floor. There were staff at the stairs to the main concourse and it looked like a terrible time getting out and back through their security. It was something that I didn't really want to mess with. I got very lucky as I headed for the bathroom right as the Suicide Girls were leaving the stage. After a short 5 minute wait...I heard that after Helmet the wait for the bathroom was like 30-40 minutes. I made it into the bathroom and I was able to get situated on the stool just in time as the evilness of Buffalo fries unclenched my bowels in a torrent. Seriously, it felt like I had a huge serving of Colon Blow and was pretty sure nothing remained in my stomach and intestinal track. Thankfully the stool was clean...unlike the sink that was clogged with vomit and the floor that seemed to have a half inch of piss covering it. Nevertheless, shitting out your guts with a line of 30+ people yelling and beating on the door of an vomit-smelling bathroom is not a fun experience. Sebastian Bach played a short but good set...it really got the crowd in the music for fun rock like GNR...unfortunately GNR wasn't next.
Beavis & Butthead (If you saw these guys on the street, you wouldn't even know they were cool) or from The Crow soundtrack. I think Helmet is a great band...but they were not a good match for Guns N Roses. Helmet is a very heavy and technical progressive rock band. Guns N Roses is more balls out, drunk rock. The two just don't mix that well. Helmet would work very well with Tool, Primus, Dream Theater, or Sugartooth. Heavy and a little plodding it is music that helps to have a heavy dose of appreciation for musicianship and something that you really have to listen to in order to get. It is not easy music. It is not something that drunk people waiting for Guns N Roses want to hear. Unfortunately, the crowd was not into it at all. More people yelling "Fuck You" than cheering and beer cups being thrown. Not the reception most bands would look forward to. I really enjoyed Helmet, I had been looking forward to seeing them for 15 years and would like to extend an apology from the state of Iowa for how the crowd treated you. You did not deserve what you got. Helmet played their 30 minute set and quickly tried to leave the stage, but the stage manager (or someone) motions them to keep playing. They keep playing and the crowd gets more and more angry. It was uncomfortable. The band keep looking to the side and they kept getting motioned to keep playing. They worked their way through another couple songs, looking down and not at the crowd the entire time because the crowd was so angry. Helmet finally escapes...er exits.
Another wait and a couple of the Suicide Girls come out and do a quick routine. I downgraded my expectations of seeing Guns N Roses to about 40%. I am pretty sure this second SG show was unplanned, I think it was a spur of the moment decision to try to calm the crowd. I think the injection of boobs did help slightly but the crowd remained cantankerous. I am not sure about the reserved seats, but it was getting ugly down on the main floor where it was general admission standing room. A bad vibe was just spreading throughout everyone...there were more than a few fights on the floor and more curse words used than regular words. As the Suicide Girls left, one of them proclaimed "Guns N Roses will be out very shortly!" It was now about 11:30pm.
GNR didn't show up very shortly. Time passed slowly. The whole coliseum smelled like body odor and spilled beer. You could literally see the crowd sink into drunkeness. After hearing people talking about rioting and rushing the stage CT and I started to head towards the back of the arena away from the main gathering of the crowd. We also found a place to sit for a while. As I mentioned earlier CT had some brand new Dr Marten boots...which are great, but standing for almost 6 straight hours (so far) in brand new boots is not a treat. I am sure his feet were sore and swollen the next day. My feet were sore and I was wearing comfy and well padded shoes. Time kept passing - there was no communication with the crowd and the crowd was becoming downright surly. I was glad we were now close to the exit as it felt like a riot could break out any moment. As midnight and 12:30am came and went, I downgraded my chances of actually seeing Guns N Roses to about 10%.
12:45am...I couldn't believe that the Hilton staff hadn't shut down this show yet. It was getting very unsettling...and I was worried what was going to happen when beer stopped flowing. I was about ready to say "Let's go home" when the lights finally dimmed. Axl and crew finally took the stage.
|Bumblefoot - mocking Slash because he can't|
*These are off the top of my head, I am sure that I could go through my stubs and find more. I don't think I left out any major suck-fests though.