You might be asking yourself what sort of stale alcohol and moldy poutine psychoactive journey I’m on right now with a title like that. Elementary, my dear Watson, ‘tis a plot twist as I’m not the one tripping at all! We live in an odd dystopian world where people are asked to respect each other’s space and natural fear of death and debilitation. All of our favourite things have suffered as free thinking humans, but we live and that is what counts, unless you’re one of those people who eat the cheese in a poutine first and leave nothing but dry fries for the garbage. You, I hold a special kind of contempt for.
Ghoulish overkill stated, it isn’t news to anyone that live stream concerts are our methadone for the highest of highs that is stuffing a venue with stanking cunts for the consumption of substances and art. These live stream shows are cute, for lack of a better term, and give a sense of defenselessness and authenticity, sometimes. It’s a chance for artists to ditch the theatrics and provide a performance as it were in the jam space, our most private moments of creation and practice, where the sound of the roaring crowd does not protect us from our little quirks and fallacies. Yes, I say US, because I too once performed in the smallest of conceivable senses and at least get a general idea of what it is to use the crowd and the vibrancy of a room to hide your little faults as a musician. Performing without said crowd is not easy. It’s significantly less pleasurable to your naughty bits, almost more akin to the nightmare that is recording, but ultimately you’re still creating art in motion and we the people (because I’m obviously schizophrenic) still crave this proverbial high. We’re living in a weird world, and if it’s resulted in us having to resort to weird things to stay happy, I’m fucking with it.
My issue with a fair amount of these performances I’ve witnessed (of whom I will not name for consideration of public lynching) is a little sense of delusional behaviour I’ve bore sight to here and there. Little things, like “pretending” you’re playing a perfectly “normal” show to a “full” room of people begging and pleading for your love but the reality is there’s nobody in the fucking room with you, Jake, and you’re just making this weird for everybody! The “Sing with me,” the “poses,” the “pick throws,” all of these attempts at “crowd participation” are nothing short of “robotic nonsense,” and have a bad tendency to “FUCKING PISS ME OFF.” You’re artists. You’re supposed to be authentic. Your performance is a connection with the world in the deepest fashion possible. I already personally hate that shit in the “normal” world, and I hate that shit even worse in this digital rendition of life, because it really means that I was right all along. You’ve got this whole “performance for people” thing down to a science when it’s supposed to be art. When you implement these theatrics to an empty room, you’re trying to promote an “illusion” that everything is fine, and I understand that, but what you’re really doing is showing me that your performance is not in fact authentic, but is in fact rehearsed. Wanna be robotic? People do still eat that shit up just fucking fine, so what do I know right? Right. Hard stop. I can just as easily fuck off and let you, the musicians of the world, continue to sell your souls in order to continue to pay the rent, and there’s no shame in that.
Or you can remember why you love this, you can remember to lay yourself bare in these times. Especially if it means we the viewers get a moment to live in it with you, to survive all this utter crap and the bodies dropping like fucking flies and have this one little form of unison, because we as people are divisive as all fuck right now. We’re turning against each other for nothing. We’re claiming stances of dissonance against friends and family alike, when we’re honestly talking about the methods with which we choose to keep ourselves alive. These shows help us survive. The illusion has its benefits, and if being an expensive animatronic is your way, then fine. Either way I will continue to watch and touch myself with tears and gravy as lube like “normal.” But, in the words of the dreamy sack of fuck-meat that is Jared Keeso, I truly wish you weren’t so fuckin’ awkward, bud.
Written (psychedelically) by Jason Greenberg