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When A Fun Night Is Used To Start A Controversy

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I was not expecting anything like this from a blog which covers the local scene, but Lo-Pie has started a war against record label Burger Records, as they found controversy around the Yves Saint Laurent after-party I attended on February 10th. An article written by Mariana Timony, published on Lo-Pie and entitled ‘Sick Sad Scene YSL x Burger‘ has upset many bands. What can I say, I just had a lot of fun attending the show, and I admit it, I was all-wide-eyes to be there, and still amazed and thankful to have been invited but I am not going to spit on the big fat cake that was so generously offered to me! When are you front row for a free concert with Beck, Father John Misty, Joan Jett and all these Burger Records bands, it is difficult to feel angry… It was fun and cool. Yes, it was a bit disorganized, yes, the bands played about 2 hours behind the schedule, yes, some bands could not play and they were disappointed, and yes, there were a lot of drunk people, but isn’t it always the case at this kind of events? There are always wasted people, especially if the show lasts for hours. Complaining about drunk people at concerts is like complaining about the rain in England.

The article restlessly trashes Burger Records and the whole event with a brutal passion, I don’t understand why this person is so angry, she should be happy to have been invited, and the thing sounds like a personal vendetta… why does she think attacks like these are justified? ‘the cool-grifting capitalists of YSL and the swollen ego of Burger Records’… ‘a nice touch that allowed regular kids to see Beck and Joan Jett in an intimate setting that would’ve been out of reach otherwise, while also cleverly concealing the fact that the entire Southern California music scene was being used as a cog in a YSL advertising campaign’… ‘I’ve always thought that Hedi Slimane was little more than a carpetbagger’.

The whole article is an assassination of Slimane and his association with Burger Records, and where Timony sees a crime and a sin, I saw a great opening, a rare occasion for two worlds to meet and certainly an opportunity for the lucky bands to have great exposure. Just explain to me how Yves Saint Laurent, an iconic brand and a multi-billion company, was exploiting a band like No Parents, which is not even known outside the Silverlake block where they live! I don’t even know where they live, but you get my point. Bleached, a Burger band which had the chance to play last just before they cut off the show, retweeted one of my pictures with the caption ‘Played the rock show with Joan Jett and Beck and I’m still like whoa’… They were visibly still in awe of the adventure. This article is ridiculous.

As for Burger Records, their people have always been the nicest persons to deal with, as they gave me a photo pass and a pit access for each one of their Burgeramas. Sure they are a punk label, sure the diversity of the music is not huge, but so what? They don’t deserve any of this harsh venom: ‘They are apolitical and deeply anti-intellectual, their bubbly ALL CAPS captions concealing their hoary self-interest, as if smiley emojis erase their calculated intentions, their Wonderbread homogeneity and rapacious need to absorb anything remotely “cool” into their brand to stave off cultural irrelevance.’ I wonder whether she stayed long enough to listen to Curtis Harding’s soul power and for the Sloths’ rock ‘n’ roll talent, it’s not that homogeneous when you listen carefully, Talking about the Sloths, frontman Tommy McLoughlin, told me this about the people at the head of the label: ‘It pisses me off cause Sean and Lee are really sweet guys and have been only supportive of the music and musicians.’

I don’t get a person getting angry at a free party with great music, free food and free booze? Is she afraid people will think she was bought by big corporations because she had a few free cocktails?  I have never worn a Yves Saint Laurent item in my life and don’t plan to change anything about this, this is way out of my league at so many levels, but don’t call me a sell-out or a hipster because I say yes to a free Beck concert with free ice cream! Why some people want everything to be politicized and complicated? And it’s not the first time a rock show is associated with fashion or some brand. It has become so common place that nobody is paying attention anymore.

But the worst part of the article may be this: ‘Unfortunately, what started out as good clean fun quickly devolved into a shitshow that ended abruptly when an attendee fell off a balcony, ending the night right before Kim & the Created—who had done more to promote the event than anyone else—were to play. Lights on, show over, everyone go home. I’m not surprised.’

It is as if Timony was taking the YSL people responsible for the incident,…because they were offering free alcohol? What a joke. But I still have a problem because the incident has not been reported anywhere except on Kim and the Created’s Facebook page, a band that precisely could not play at the show… so allow me to find this a bit strange? Wouldn’t this be all over the news? Last time it happened — in 2013 during a Blink-182 concert — it was reported on hundreds of websites, whereas nobody could find anything about this new fall? I sent a request to the LAFD to find out if an ambulance was really dispatched to the Palladium that night. I haven’t the answer yet but if it never happened, the ‘I told you so’ part, the holier-than-you critic of this Lo-Pie article totally falls apart.

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