Wednesday, May 25, 2011

PANIC (the band) = Fantastic! PANIC (the feeling) = Horrible.

PANIC (the band) = Fantastic!
Before I go into my review of my night last night I want to preface this by saying what an amazing show Panic! puts on. Brendon's energy and talent are astounding! He sounds as good live as he does in recording...which is quite impressive. Same to be said for the musicians of the group. Many bands cannot do that but the talent these four have in abundance pours out of them as they lovingly share their talent and music with you. Brendon is hilarious and fun as well as a vocal god. I was a vocal performer for years and I will tell you this, his voice is bloody amazing. The energy they give off, the fun they're having, the love they have for those who came out to support them...unwavering and felt in the core of your being.

That said...

PANIC (the feeling) = Horrible.
To say I was beaten up would probably be the best term for how my body feels right now. Like I decided physical abuse was a good idea or something. And it wasn't just one person who went out of their way to be asinine, but many. Let me explain why I'm internally bruised and why I slept on ice packs.

Two things:
A) I am not amazing in large crowds where I cannot move but when I go to a concert I just prepare to be banged into a bit and I deal with a concert crowed actually much better than I do when trying to move though the crowded area in Times Square.
B) I tend to go to Goth/Industrial concerts where there's usually some mosh pit but those outside of it are not violent or disrespectful. They are aware of where they are and aim not to hurt anyone. Violent music yet humane surroundings and everyone gets to enjoy the music. I thought, there is no way this type of band can be rougher than that. MISTAKE #1.

So, last night I went to go see PANIC AT THE DISCO! at Terminal 5 on West 56th in NYC...and I feel like I had a fully body workout by a trainer who was out to kill me. To be honest, I'm lucky I didn't get injured worse than I was...and if Brendon wasn't an amazing performer...I'd be calling the night a wash and not worth my money.

My besty couldn't make the concert as planned last night due to parental arrival to the city, but she sent her boyfriend with me to the concert in her place. Garret and I arrive at Terminal 5 and got in line. A line full of mostly teenagers. *sigh* I had NO idea when I bought the tickets of the age of Panic's fans but I thought, "How bad could they be?" MISTAKE #2.

The organization of the staff at Terminal 5 seemed to be quite amazing, at first. They took us into the venue early and lined us up in the outside bar area with care and concerns for people's safety. Then, they let us into the venue at 6:30pm...also making sure no one ran or was injured. So far so good...they were going to make sure we were safe, right? MISTAKE #3.

Garret and I ended up near center on the floor about 15 feet from the stage. Good spot. Though short, I could see the center mic okay and other areas so it looked to be a decent spot. MISTAKE #4.

People started packing in tight and then we all had to stand for an HOUR with nothing to do but be shoved around and get packed in tighter and tighter with people starting to shove and hit. One drunk douchebag decided it was a great time to start treating the tight packed group of people like they were in a mosh pit. It took many of us screaming at him and his partner to convince them that it wasn't THAT kind of concert. I kept thinking, "If the band would just start people would calm down"...MISTAKE #5.

By the time the first opening band started...whoever they were...everyone was irritated, hot, crammed together and edgy. The first band, called Foxy Shazam (creepy keyboardist)...were HORRIBLE. Oh my god...they were just bad (except the drummer, he was quite good). I've seen teenage garage bands with more charisma and talent! I mean, there music mighta had a chance if their lead singer wasn't a total tool who couldn't sing a note or, for that matter, find an ounce of stage presence! The bastard even decided he was "cool" enough to crowd surf on a bunch of teenage girls in the front. I don't have words for how scarey THAT was.

The second opening act was a band I've never heard of (but Garret had) called FUN. I really liked them and luckily Garret got a good foot hold and braced his arms around me like a barier and I didn't get banged around as much (meaning I still got pushed around but not to the point where I almost fell over). Near the end of their set we could see Brendon up in the side rafters of the stage dancing around having fun and it made me laugh/smile. I started to think, "Maybe I can make it through my own panic so as to see PANIC! up close. It's why I came here, right? MISTAKE #6

The crowd is buzzing with antici...pation (sorry, I so wanted a Rocky Horror reference) and people have shoved us so far forward now that Garret and I are 10 feet from the stage and literally slammed up against people on all sides. But that's not the worst of it. The jackasses who call themselves security decide to amuse themselves. They bring out bottles of water and spray us with it and try and give water to those they can reach by pouring it in their mouths. It creates a riot. Shoving, pushing, hitting to get near the water. The security watches small girls screaming for help and they laughed. It was a game to them. I'm so pinned in I can't raise arms so when they start to chuck heavy bottles of water to people, I worry I'll be beaned in the head. Luckily I was not.

After two bouts of THAT behavior it stops and Garret and I contemplate leaving, its that bad. But, I paid to see PANIC! for the love of all that's holy and damn it, I'm seeing them! I'm not leaving my spot just before they go on. MISTAKE #7

Finally, at 9:30 on the nose (after I've taken 3 hours of beatings) they hit the stage singing "Ready to Go" and the crowd explodes! They bounce up and down in unison, in rhythm, and for a five foot nothing girl...surrounded by people jumping and pushing and screaming...I was terrified. I had to grasp onto Garret to keep me from freaking out. I considered leaving again but, others had tried to get out and couldn't. We were trapped in there.

Then it happened.

The shoving and pushing became so bad on all sides my ribcage was pressed in and I couldn't breath. The sway shoved us right, then left, then front and back and then repeated like a violent lover raping you with a force you have no control over. My feet almost came out from under me, but my low center of gravity kept me upright. I couldn't breathe and finally panic set in. A full, unleashed, panic attack. I shoved with all of my might with my arms and was able to get people off of the front of me so as to breathe.

I turned to Garret, who says the look of terror on my face and in my eyes was extreme, and said, "I've gotta go!" I barely saw him nod before I turned to my right and decided these people were moving one way or another...if it meant I had to injure them to get out. I tore through them screaming "MOVE NOW!" and "Let me out!" Garret is behind me, a foot taller, saying for people to let me out as well. And they did.

By the time I got somewhere where people weren't smashed together like sardines I stopped and luckily Garret was there to put his arms around me as I sobbed and shook like a 5 year old kid who'd been beaten by their parents. I missed that entire song of Panic's cause I was literally having a panic attack and wondering if I needed a brown bag to breathe in and out of.

I finally was able to get myself pulled together, down the rest of my vitamin water, and enjoy the rest of the concert from afar. Hence why my pictures here are from a wasy away. I just didn't even make it through a full song with them up front so no close pics for me :(. Mind you, I think if I'd have stayed I'd be in a hospital right now. FOR GREAT PICS OF LAST NIGHT...GO HERE!

Looking back Garret said he'd never seen such a small person push through a mob that fast before. LOL! I was hell bent to get out alive at that point. What's funny is that Garret tends to be in the mosh pit at metal shows and said that this was worse than that. Well hell.

We left...I bought a shirt as proof I survived the damn thing...and picked up taco's on the way to the train (mmmm...taco cart) and a diet soda and after that was down me I felt much better. Got home, walked the dog, lay on a two foot long ice pack for my back and put my feet on another one. Then I wrapped my left leg in ice as well.

Woke up this morning feeling every muscle in my back, my sides, arms, legs and feet bitching at me. be honest. If I didn't work out as much as I do (water aerobics), if Garret hadn't protected me as much as he was able, and if I'd not slept on ice...I don't think I'd have gotten outta bed this morning.

Will I ever go see them again? Probably not. That wasn't worth my money. Sadly that effects Panic! rather than the venue (who's fault it actually is as no security stopped the abuse) but I just don't see myself ever going again unless I can buy a VIP area ticket. Floor standing was your only real option for the masses with nowhere to sit so it was a floor full of crazy people. Idiots who ruined what should've been a really great concert.

What's sad is this all could've been prevented by security that knew how do to their job and didn't find it funny to see people in pain.

That said, Brendon and Spencer did a wonderful job and I enjoyed the rest of the concert once I'd gotten far away from the stage. I think it was their performance that saved the night for me at all. Cause if they'd not been amazing I'd be wanting not just my night back, but my money.

But it it wasn't a complete wash.

So, many thanks to Brendon (though I don't know you). You are an amazing performer with a killer voice and you saved the night for me.

Now back to putting Biofreeze on my muscles so I can get back to work.

Hurts my back to breathe in still.


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