Friday Top 10: Biggest concert riots

Keeping up with our theme for the week, we’re covering all things riots and looting. Luckily, we have a first hand look at the situation via Mark, who’s been doing some serious investigative journalism, which will hopefully bring us a Pulitzer, the ultimate goal of the people involved in this website.

Now, while Mark is busy on the frontlines fighting looters and making viral videos out of it (get ready for the premiere next week when we make a Top 10: Metal objects to crack skulls with), I took inspiration from the Tuesday Trivia I made this week to extend the subject matter into a Top 10. Get ready for Top 10 rock and metal concert riot moments we’re glad we were too young or too broke to go to.

Since there was a lot of material involved, and I had a hard time dividing riots from otherwise “usual” stage incidents, this one focuses more on what happened in the crowd, than on stage, but the line is kind of blurry. Either way, you might get a follow up Top 10 if I feel like it, bitches. Also, a note on the order — there is none really. Most of these things would be like classifying human stupidity, and we know it comes in all shapes and forms and shouldn’t be discriminated against. Generally speaking, the higher the human toll and material damage, the higher the spot on the list.

#10: Guns N’ Roses in Buenos Aires (Argentina), 2010

Incidentes en Buenos Aires

The first of three appearances this band makes on the list (just wow), and the only one with the Chinese Democracy lineup. Guess the guys didn’t lose the sense of pissing people off as time went buy. Last year in Buenos Aires, people started doing shit after they couldn’t get tickets to get in (hilarious, I know). Police were called in to stop the violence, 12 people were arrested.

#9: Metallica at Santiago (Chile), 2010

Incidentes en Chile

Who says Metallica ain’t badass and popular no mo’? Last year, when they performed in Chile, a lot of people couldn’t get inside due to lack of tickets available, so they did the only logical thing — rushed for the gates anyway. Riots ensued, police and military were brought in to resolve the situation.

#8: Alice Cooper in Toronto, 1980

Blame Canada, blame Canada...

You might remember how a few months back we reported Alice Cooper canceled a show due to illness, which hasn’t happened in like 30 years. Now we know why, because the last time he did it, this happened.

#7: Guns N’ Roses at Montreal (Canada), 1992

One more time guys: Blame Canada, blame Canada...

Who says Canadians don’t riot just because of stupid shit like hockey? They also riot because of stupid shit like Guns N’ Roses. Making the second appearance on this list, this time around, Axl canceled the show after just one song, because he had a sore throat. Fans have already missed Metallica’s set due to pyrotechnics incident which hurt James, and all hell broke loose. On a side note, I live in one of the countries seen at the beginning of the news clip.

#6: Atari Teenage Riot in Berlin, 1999

Ein, zwei, Polizei...

I have no idea if this band ever held a Space Invaders tournament, but they have at least justified the riot part of the band’s name. It takes balls to take the band to the street with the single intention of trying to stir shit up — which they accomplished. They were later arrested.

#5: Pearl Jam at Roskilde Festival (Denmark), 2000

This video is the equivalent of people taping in cinema

Pearl Jam were involved in a similar incident as The Who (which you’ll be reading of a few spots further down the list). Crowd of about 100.000 people rushed towards the stage, crushing the people in the front. In total, there were 9 people dead.

#4: Guns N’ Roses at Maryland Heights 1991

Drama Queen

I’ve covered this in detail on this week’s Tuesday Trivia. In short – Axl is an ass. According to reports, this was even worse than the Canadian riots, but I can’t prove it because I have no videos other than Axl jumping in the crowd, so you’ll have to trust me and Wikipedia.

#3: The Who in Cincinnati, 1979

The most non-PC thing you will ever find on this website? Yeeaaaaaaah!

Typical case of letting people take the best seats by running/pushing towards them, which is a problem when an arena over capacity rushes towards the front. 11 people got crushed to death, and the concert served as a warning call to get better crowd management policies at arenas so the accident wouldn’t happen again.

#2: Rolling Stones at the Altamont Speedway, 1969

Aaaah hells no

Take notes: If you ever plan on making a free show for an audience of about 200.000 people, and you hire Hells Angels as guards, and pay them in beer, you might as well change your name from Rolling Stones to Retard Strongs. You know you have a real problem on your hands when security stabs a man to death in the middle of your set. Besides that unlucky guy, two other died in hit and run, one drowned, and 850 were injured.

#1: Woodstock 99

Break Stuff

What can be said about this one that hasn’t been said before? That the bands playing on it weren’t shit? Now that would be a first. Buuurn. For the younger people out there, The Woodstock festival of 1999 was pretty much the exact opposite of the one of ’69 — the festival went wrong mainly because the promoters failed to do a good job and provide stuff like, you know, drinking water, and that coupled with music from the likes of Insane Clown Posse, Kid Rock and Limp Bizkit sure didn’t help.

Standout moments: huge fires during Red Hot Chili Peppers set, and a few alleged rapes during Limp Bizkit’s (according to some people, a crowd surfing woman was pulled down and gang raped in front of everyone). Give piece a chance (ironically, a peace group was handing out lit candles, which incited the fires on the last day).

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