Ivor Biggun and the Red Nosed Burglars vs the Biggest Green Day
When Green Day rocked Australia in March this year, fans and critics alike agreed the concerts were nothing short of spectacular. But they ain't seen nuthin' yet. When Green Day return this December for a stadium show at the Sydney Cricket Ground, they'll be bringing 15 semis carrying over 300 tons of equipment and staging. That includes on 8.5 metre stage thrust stretching out int the audience while a collection of strategically-placed screens ensure those further back catch all the action, with two massive LED screens which will tower each side of the stage and a touring party of 200 staff will construct and stage the concert. Green Day hit the Sydney Cricket Ground on Wednesday December 14.
What's wrong with this picture? Apart from finishing the wretched desecration with an American date configuration, that is. Quite a few things actually.
- Anything bigger than a touring van and you're starting to get out of true punk territory. And the 'can-do philosophy' that fuelled the drive of early practitioners is corroded by 200 super-roadies erecting the stage.
- When I looked up and saw the Metallica trucks, it seemed natural enough. The sight of a convoy of semis just carrying your shit might impress the metal fan but what the fuck has it got to do with punk rock?
- People forget that a large part of what defined punk was a reaction against prog rock, against massive spectacle, against separation between the musicians and the audience. In short, it's a checklist that raises a finger to the notion of spectacle, never mind it's ostentatious pursuit.
- Green Day and Simple Plan have no more outrage than necessary. The punk I like is uncomfortable, abrasive, confrontational, loud, snotty. The Descendants not The Offspring of The Stooges and New York Dolls. Of the Sex Pistols, Siouxsie Sioux and The Damned. Of early Swans, Flipper, Butthole Surfers, Dead Kennedys. The list goes on. Maybe I like it more for the genuine tear-it-up rage than for the sentiment but it's better than soppy pop being labelled as punk.
- What made a movement so determined to not be commercial to be co-opted in such a way? Jello Biafra, as one of the foremost paranoiacs that fuelled disgust and distrust, felt in the eighties that there were forces seeking to make profits instead of making prophets. As much as they hated hippies, the punks suffered the same fate.
On a lighter note - perhaps the best newspaper headline ever
Ogling Farmer Fractures Penis
A NEWLY married Romanian farmer fractured his penis after ogling his young wife while carrying a heavy sack of grain.
Farmer Gheorge Popa, 52, from Galati, had been moving the grain sacks to the barn when he stopped to watch his 25-year-old wife Loredana hang out the washing.
He got himself over excited and dropped the sack on his erect penis, snapping vital tendons and ligaments.