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Eden Musicfest



>Good luck with getting in and out -
>you literally CAN NOT get within 5km (or around that) of the concert area,
>they are going to have police lined up all around it. i doubt you will be

This is kind of a long one...

I'm back from Eden, and I have to say that it was *definitely* worth the
money! There were not police lined up around it -- there were very few
police at all, as a matter of fact -- and they had the best security I've
ever seen. They tried to be strict about what you could bring in (tho they
were also very cool about it), but lots of people still got "contraband"
in. Weather was beautiful, there was tons of bare flesh (mine got
sunburnt), and concession prices were actually fairly reasonable. The only
real blunder the organizers made was cancelling the special guest (but what
a blunder it was!). Even U.S. Customs was good to us, considering we were 2
Americans, a Scot with a work visa, and a Scot with no visa at all, and we
were crossing the border at 3 AM...

Sloan was bad. Not good bad, bad bad. It wasn't their fault, really --
Patrick's guitar didn't work. It would be time for him to play and all we'd
hear is a little scratchy sound. And, of course, they were the *only* band
I saw who had any sound problems... >-|  It was still interesting to see
what they had done with some of the new songs, particularly "Everything
You've Done Wrong." When Chris substituted for the horns at the beginning
in Detroit a couple weeks ago he looked really tentative and didn't do all
of it, but this time he did it like he knew what he was doing. In the
middle of "Snowsuit Sound" Jay started yelling at somebody backstage to
"fuck off, get the fuck out of here!" I don't know who he was yelling at --
maybe someone from the sound company?

If you don't care about the rest of Eden, read no further -- no EC content
beyond this point!

Everything went surprisingly smoothly until Sunday afternoon. Apparently,
on Saturday night after the Tragically Hip finished there was a mini-riot.
The next morning the shuttle buses weren't running because of the debris on
the track. When the Mighty Mighty Bosstones hit the stage they said that
they were being pulled off early because of some thunderstorm that was
coming. They really REALLY accelerated the bands on the second stage --
Universal Honey, the last band, went on 3 hours before they were originally
scheduled! Some of the bands were getting really pissed off. hHead, when
told they only had 2 minutes left, said "This is our last song, it's a
minute and 90 seconds long."

Then they cancelled the special guest. They claimed it would have been sort
of an all-star jam made including members of all the bands, but that it
logistically just wouldn't work. Nobody really bought that -- I mean, how
long has this been scheduled? The most legit story seemed to be Green Day
-- people who had been backstage said Green Day had been there since
Friday. What I'm sort of piecing together now is that they wanted to finish
the show while it was still daylight, so it would be easier to put down any
mini-riots that ensued. Thing is, they ensured themselves a big riot as
soon as they cancelled the special guest. I left right away, but from what
I've heard, campsites and even a golf cart were set on fire last night, the
tire bundles at the sides of the race track were pulled apart and tires
rolled down the hills -- I saw some incredibly pissed off people last
night, so I can't say I'm surprised. That was the organizers only blunder
of the weekend, but what a big one it was!

Some of the more interesting things:

- On the first day we made a wrong turn and took a really long way around
the track to get to the stage. So we're walking along and hear some
rustling in the woods nearby. It was a small group of people carrying a TV
camera, which turned out to be a crew from Much Music. That host with dark
curly hair (he was interviewing the Foo Fighters on TV on Friday morning)
was with them and asked us if we had come from the main enterance. Of
course we pointed him the wrong way, since that was the way we had come...
It was really wierd to see him come marching out of the woods like that.

- Security was really good, in part because the crowd was really
cooperative. There was a guy at the second stage who just sat on the front
of the stage, and he just sat and danced and pumped his fists and was
really into the music. When he saw someone doing something wrong he'd just
point at them. When they stopped, he'd give them the thumbs up. A far cry
from the Gestapo I had expected...

- While I was watching Live I had been periodically talking to the woman
standing behind me (actually, she was mostly talking to me -- I don't talk
much while a band is onstage). At one point, I turned around and couldn't
help noticing that she had her shorts down around her ankles. I don't want
to know.

- During the Bosstones set, about 50 beachballs came out of nowhere. There
were only a few thousand people watching, and the dense cloud of beachballs
looked really cool.

- The best set was easily Ani DiFranco. She had major stagefright, because
she didn't expect so many people to stay and watch her. (With no special
guest, she became the headliner for Sunday night). There were easily
10,000+ crowding the stage for her, and she could hardly contain herself.
It was great!

- Other great sets were Love & Rockets, 7 Year Bitch, Merlin, Pluto, hHead,
Catherine Wheel, Tragically Hip -- I dunno, it's too hard to remember them
all right now. The only disappointing thing about the Hip was that their
set was almost identical to the one they played in Toledo 2 weeks ago (but
there's a big difference between seeing them in a crowd of 2,000 and a
crowd of 50,000, lemme tell ya).

alan