Perth, Australia

By gillies_79@hotmail.com

I was going to see silverchair and I was determined to get to the front of Perth Oval, in front of the rest of the crowd and grasp the bar in excitement. I could still remember the first time I had seen the ad in a local street press newspaper, it was the first time I was going to see them, having missed out on the Fremantle concert on the 5th of February. The excitement I carried from the time I got my ticket to the time I ran through the gates that afternoon was definitely and undeniably the most excitement I had felt in my life.

It was getting dark, Storytime filled the air with loud and occasional melodic tunes. They had provoked a small crowd slowly perfecting the art of crowd surfing over tall moshers. Although, I had noticed the large crowd sitting patiently on the grass, saving their energy for the band they had obviously came to see. The clouds also provoked a small crowd into the evening, consisting more of calm, elder dancers.

It was only when the Cruel Sea entered the stage to either cheers or screams of impatience for silverchair that the crowd began to become heavy and people fought for their places in front of the bar. Nearing the end of their set list, I saw people either watching the back of the stage intently to catch one glimpse of Daniel, Ben or Chris, or becoming slightly angry with the band trying to promote their music on stage. Although the Cruel Sea didn't use the most wise choice of equipment for a crowd waiting for the sound of raw distortion and intense feedback, the crowd was ready to rock.

Fortunately for me, I had seen people I knew who shared their story of earlier, seeing Daniel fiddling with his guitar. She yelled "DANIEL" but he only looked up to the sight of my friends screaming how beautiful he was and quickly put his head down again with his blonde hair over his face. He was so content with tuning his guitar he seemed as though he had no desire to be the subject of screaming fans eager to get a couple of signatures through the high backstage fence which separated them.

The lights became dim and the road crew began to set up the bands equipment that was used to get the crowd moshing and shaking with a feeling you cant describe,. the feeling you can only describe as an intense "rock concert." People were cheering, shouting "silverchair silverchair," and I looked to either side of the stage wondering who was going to make their entrance first. It was Chris, people looked in amazement as he had shaved his hair off a couple of weeks before. I only heard words of, "whos that?" - "oh my god" and "how could he do that." Daniel walked on immediately after Chris on the opposite side of the stage, Ben came as per usual from the back..

They began their set list, however writing this three and half years later, I can't remember the song they began with or Daniel's words in between but I do remember being forced to the ground and dragged over the bar, I had no time to say anything except look up at the stage in front of me knowing it was the closest I was going to get to them for the rest of the night. I held my head up, stalling the security guards for as long as I could although I was forced to the back of the crowd and I couldn't see them performing on stage no matter how high I jumped. I ended up hearing the distant sounds of Tomorrow, Pure massacre, Findaway and Faultline from across the Oval. They appeared to me as ants under lights from where I stood, past the crowd and extremely exhausted, yet angry enough to find my friends.

Lucky for me, my friends, who I had coincidentally seen in the crowd, had managed to see a red piece of rope and the opportunity to grab a backstage pass from the back pocket of an intoxicated guy who would have fallen over if my friend hadn't have been behind him for comfort once he had stumbled between his own feet. Being three of us, we tried to get backstage on the one pass however, the security guy was not someone to reckon with. We noticed a large crowd of eager people in front of him and decided to let one person use the pass while my friend and I crawled through between the feet of screaming fans and a distracted security guard. We saw no one to the likes of blonde and brown haired louts.

Having asked a strange man, we later figured out it was Chris' old man and he yelled at Chris standing amongst a circle of fans to come and talk to us. He signed our backstage pass and we called it a night…although we were quickly noticed by the security guard who was eager to take our signed pass from us, punishment? Hmm, I'm still angry and with nothing to show for my night of disaster during the concert, yet pleased that I managed to tell one member of silverchair just how good their show really was. I still don't know which was more satisfying, meeting Chris or the look on the security guards face when he had realised we had escaped him.