Splendour In The Grass 2009 – Friday

The closing hours of Thursday bring with them rumours that Jane’s Addiction – of all the bands on the 2009 Splendour bill, the one that I most what to see and the one that I most want to photograph – have cancelled their whole Australian tour. Friday morning brings confirmation of this, with Stephen Perkins hospitalised in LA with an elbow infection. The misery is further compounded almost instantly with news that the organisers have drafted in The Living End to replace them. Of all Australian bands, The Living End.

In theory you would think that it just couldn’t get any worse and yet there’s a nagging feeling that this isn’t rock bottom. There are a number of occurrences that would make the current situation even worse than they already are: Firstly, The Living End will inevitably either include a Jane’s Addiction cover or at the very least segue one or two of their own songs into JA songs for a few bars. And this will more than likely want me to start throwing things at the band. Heavy inanimate objects, small sharp implements, anything close to hand; the choice is endless. Secondly, if JA reschedule their shows it will either be when I’m out of the country or I’ll be put forward to photograph them and they’ll whip out their current rights-grabbing contract five minutes before they’re due on stage and I’ll have to walk away. It just doesn’t feel that this story that has a happy ending.

I’m not sure how the news has been taken by Splendour’s paying punters. Part of me can’t help but think that the majority of Splendour’s main demographic will be delighted at the changes to the line-up, especially as I’ve experienced similar Jane’s Addiction ambivalence before. At the Leeds Festival in 2002 Jane’s Addiction played on the main stage at the same time The Vines were playing one of the smaller tent stages. You could have walked straight up to the barrier without many problems and watched Perry Farrell etc from the very front if you wanted, whereas you couldn’t even get anywhere near getting into the tent to watch The Vines. Oh, how we laughed. And a similar thing happened a year later at an MTV2 gig at Brixton Academy when The Darkness, at the height of their fame, supported Jane’s Addiction. Half the audience left after The Darkness. What is wrong with these people?

The rest of Friday doesn’t really improve; despite being a day off I end up going to work to try and clear the backlog of overdue reports and proposals, which means I don’t leave Brisbane until 3:45pm, hit the Friday afternoon rush hour and take almost 3 hours to get down to New Brighton, just north of Brunswick Heads, where I’m staying for the weekend. And just as I leave the motorway, the heavens open to an extent that I can hardly see where I’m going, even with the windscreen wipers on their highest speed. It’s some sort of navigation miracle that I manage to find the house.

But here now and enjoying good company, good food and a few drinks. And it’s suddenly 12:30am and it all starts in less than 12 hours.

2 Responses to “Splendour In The Grass 2009 – Friday”

  1. Em Williams says:

    at least u got there. i am still in brisbane 🙁

  2. How come. You're not missing much tbqh. Hope you made it down for the specials though. Highlight me the day so far by a long way.

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