Posted by: Chelsea Novak | July 31, 2006

Seating for the elderly

Last night my favourite band in all the world made it’s way through Toronto. Tragically, Muse had signed on to play at The Docks. For those who do not know, it’s the Toronto venue/club that recently had its liquor licence revoked due to noise complaints and is also known for being the most terrible rock venue known to mankind. It’s a long, skinny building that, I swear, slopes uphill towards the stage.

This configuration makes it really easy fort things to get claustrophobic really quickly. I’ve noticed that as I’ve gotten older my already low tolerance for being touched, grazed or jostled by strangers at rock shows has basically faded into nothingness. I have no patience for it and it’s something that slowly drives me insane over the course of the evening. I know I shouldn’t let it bother me, but it ultimately ends up ruining any concert experience I’m trying to enjoy.

Like last night, there was this one kid beside me wearing possibly the cheapest polo shirt I have ever encountered. The fabric of this thing was like a brillo pad? How do I know this? Because he was wedged right up against me and was constantly in contact with my arm. He was also perpetually in motion. Even though the show hadn’t started, he was moving. I had no personal space and any time someone tried to push their way up to the front, I was knocked completely off balance and had to cling to M just to stay upright. It was hot, cramped, I appeared to be surrounded by people who were all at least 6’3″ and I was being chaffed by a hyperactive teen wearing a shirt made of burlap.

And I paid for this experience?

M and I had to get out of there, so we set a meeting place to find Chris and Tash at the end of the show and starting pushing our way back to find some kind of free space in the building. And where did we find it? By the bar. Sure, the band was really, really far away and the sound was sadly distorted, but I could hear and mostly see the show and get the horrifying thoughts of the Whitesnake club fire out of my head.

Which was handy, because I needed that space in my head to enjoy yet another superlative Muse performance. And even though The Docks sucks donkey ass it’s good that we went. “Why?” you ask? Well it seems that the next time Muse will be playing in the great city of Toronto will be during the Virgin Mobile V-Cast Festival on Toronto Island. It’s a two day festival featuring bands like Zero 7, Gnarls Barkley and one of my top-five-and-I’ve-never-seen-them-live bands, Massive Attack. So it’s a two day show that I would be pretty keen on attending. Another Muse show outdoors and finally seeing Massive Attack. Oh, but when is the show? September 9? Oh, that’s funny. Really funny.

Ahh well, I can only assume that if Muse is in town on my wedding day that I can expect an acoustic set at the reception.

Today’s sing-a-long song: “Far Away” by Muse



  1. Hey Chelsea,

    If it’s any consolation, I saw Massive Attack (one of my favotire Queen’s days groups) at Coachella this year, and honestly, no great shakes. So much of the albums are guest performances, and it doesn’t really hold up live. Unlike your wedding, which I am sure will be beyond all known standards of fantastic.

  2. I cried during Butterflies and Hurricanes. I would have happily stood beside burlapsack man to be anywhere near the stage. We near the side bar.. with my little 5’5 stature.. just seeing glimpses of them made my cry like a 3 year old. .. cry in a way that happiness and emotion has never done to me,

  3. If you were at Curiosa in 2004 you would have lost your mind. That show made me so happy it hurt. The section in the middle of Bufferflies and Hurricanes when Matt breaks into that delicious bit of classical piano, the softest summer breeze drifted across the crowd creating (at least for me) this fantastic sensation of bliss. We were so close and the crowd was so great.

    Anyway, I’m glad you were able to enjoy it. I will always prefer them in wider venues. They were amazing at the KoolHaus and seeing them at the Mod Club blew my mind. Amazing venues where the crowd made an amazing experience that much more spectacular.

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