Why Should Consumers Settle For Crappy Concert Sound?

Back during our comments outage, reader Chris wrote to us about an incredibly disappointing concert that he attended. The show wasn’t terrible because the artists weren’t any good: even if you don’t like country music, you have to grant that Kenny Chesney and Tim McGraw are hard-working, talented, and very attractive entertainers. No, Chris’s problem was that up in his seats on the upper level of the arena, the Angel Stadium of Anaheim, the sound quality was terrible, song lyrics impossible to decipher, and even spoken words in between songs impossible to understand.

He writes:

Last Saturday, I wen to the Kenny Chesney/Tim McGraw concert in Anaheim, California. My family and I sat in the upper level high above the stage to the left. The audio quality was horrible up there. For thousands of us, the audio was muddy and you couldn’t understand the lyrics to songs or to what the singers would say between songs. With the amount of speakers and sophistication of the shows and high celebrity status of the singers, you would think that the audio quality would be at least decent for everyone. It wasn’t and I’m having trouble finding a contact person within the two bands to ask about the audio set-up and if there was a known problem or the crews didn’t bother to check around the stadium before the show to ensure decent audio quality.

When someone buys something at a store or gets a service, they can go back to the merchant and ask for a refund or a credit. But when you go to a large concert, the product delivered to the customer is a bit intangible. How does one communicate with the people providing the service to tell them that the delivered product was subpar? I’ve tried finding the bands’ management people but I’ve had no luck. How else can I find out who to talk to about a poor product within such a large scale operation? I’m sure there are other Consumerist readers who have felt the same way about concerts.

An LA Times review of the concert points out that it’s not the sound quality that drew many of the fans in the Anaheim Stadium that night, so maybe other purchasers of upper-level seats weren’t about to complain. Maybe.

[W]hen some of the biggest ovations of the evening are generated by projected images of the show’s star without his shirt, you know that it’s more than catchy turns of phrase and hummable melodies that pull nearly 45,000 people to the show.

Why bother going to a concert if you can’t understand anything, though? Should less expensive tickets come with a warning that you won’t be able to hear a darn thing, or is it understood that you need to buy the $300 primo seats if you want to understand every word in a big venue like a major-league baseball stadium?

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  1. Evil_Otto would rather pay taxes than make someone else rich says:

    I think the last quoted part of the entry says it all. Most people wouldn’t know good sound quality if it bit them on the ear. These are the people who encode mp3s at 128k/s and think it sounds just as good.

    That being said, it’s frequently very difficult to create a sound system that is going to be clear for everyone in an oddly (acoustically) shaped space. But, that’s no excuse for not trying.

    • Loias supports harsher punishments against corporations says:

      I think most sound techs don’t know good sound, either, to be honest. Specifically the ones that set up sound system out in the real world (I’m not inckuding studio techs).

      I’ve never, and I truly mean never, been to any concert or other large event with sound that even remotely represented what I thought was a good sound setup.

      And maybe I’m in the minority on that, then. But I just don’t get the appeal of massive bass with no rich sound, where I can’t hear my own voice talking.

      • Overman says:

        “I think most sound techs don’t know good sound, either, to be honest. Specifically the ones that set up sound system out in the real world ”

        I don’t do sound, so I woun’t get pissed.
        But its not nearly as easy as people think.
        Temprature and humidity change the fequency response.
        Filling a venue with soft human bodies absords the high end.
        And slapback from walls and the floor will effect the sound from the delay arrays.
        That said, the mix is made from FrontOfHouse in the general center of the room.
        They use a Real Time Analyser to measure frequency return so it sounds perfect at the audio console.
        Next to the Audio lead is the Producer.
        As long as that jackass likes it, everyone has a job.
        Sound Techs know the physics, but only care that it sounds good to one person.

        • Loias supports harsher punishments against corporations says:

          “They use a Real Time Analyser to measure frequency return so it sounds perfect at the audio console.”

          Problem is, no one paying is at the audio console. But I totally get what you are saying – the jackass producer may be the end all for whatever the sound might be.

          • juggler314 says:

            No the bigger problem is they are only going to measure it at a few points, and realistically getting clean sound out beyond a certain percentage of the seats isn’t going to happen unless the venue was built with that in mind. Most concern venues are setup to have a massive wall of sound coming out of a bunch of speakers hung and setup near the stage. This is the only place you will see A/V setup this way – at any sort of professional meeting or event, there will be speakers setup evenly spaced throughout the venue – this provides a cleaner more consistent sound. Big venues simply don’t have this luxury though – sometimes you can’t put speakers were you need to.

    • JoshUng says:

      I saw Pearl Jam at Penn State years ago, furthest back row, and the sound was horrible. i’m probably somebody who wouldn’t notice/care if a audio track was encoded wrong, but there is no way anybody could hear that and think there was no problem with the sound.

      • Libertas1 says:

        You can’t understand anything off the album, so it’s probably 100% accurate sound reproduction.

    • bluline says:

      Most stadiums and arenas are hopeless for concerts, no matter what the sound guys do. They simply weren’t designed and built with concert sound in mind. So unless you have seats on the floor and near the front, you’re going to get screwed.

  2. chiieddy says:

    I do have a question, and it is pertinent to the sound quality. Was it windy in the stadium that day? That’s not something the venue or the artist can control and essentially the sound could be blown away.

    • DoctorDawg says:

      Not in this universe. Sound travels over 600 miles an hour through the air, so you’d need a 600 mph or higher wind to effectively remove the mass of air vibrated by the speakers before it hits your cochleas.

      Even Chesney and McGraw don’t blow that hard.

      • doctor_cos wants you to remain calm says:

        You obviously have no idea what you’re talking about.
        In the real universe (here), wind carries sound, and wind can block sound. I have played in bands and run sound outdoors many times, and without a doubt wind (and humidity) affect the sound.
        Experience > ‘knowledge’

        • chiieddy says:

          Thanks. I might have only been in marching band in high school, and it may have been more moons ago than I care to share, but it’s pretty obvious that wind can carry sound away.

  3. Coffee says:

    In my experience, groups that perform in large venues frequently turn up the volume on the instruments to the point that it becomes very, very difficult to hear the lead singer performing. Truth told, I only go to concerts now if someone invites me because they’re expensive timesinks that offer an inferior experience to simply popping in a CD or DVD of the group you like at home.

  4. who? says:

    Stadiums aren’t exactly concert halls. The sound quality probably wasn’t very good in the expensive seats, either. Most people don’t go to stadium concerts for the sound quality. They go for the experience, partying with 70,000 other people who are fans of the same performer, and seeing Tim McGraw on a jumbotron without his shirt, apparently.

    I’m not saying OP doesn’t have a point, however. He does. it’s just that stadium concerts have never actually been about the music.

    • Loias supports harsher punishments against corporations says:

      Sounds like you’re under the age of 30. Even as a 30-yr-old myself I’d have to disagree. At some point, seeing a band in concert was actually about hearing a great band sound great, having them rock out to 15-minute versions of their singles, and actually enjoy MUSICIANS and not entertainment artists. But I agree that is not why you go anymore.

      • Loias supports harsher punishments against corporations says:

        I should clarify, that time probably was about 20+ years ago.

      • who? says:

        Actually, I’m old enough that the last stadium concert I went to was the Rolling Stones in the early 80’s. The sound was crappy there, too, even though we had field tickets. But getting to hang out in the middle of a huge Stones concert? Priceless!

        There’s a huge difference between a 70,000 seat stadium venue and, say, a 10,000 seat amphitheatre that’s purpose built for concerts. I’ve had great musical experiences at venues like that. Baseball stadiums? Not so much.

        • Back to waiting, but I did get a cute dragon ear cuff says:

          I have been to a stadium show with good sound, ONCE.

          Back in 1976 at RFK Stadium in DC. Gary Wright, Pousette Dart Band, Peter Frampton and the headliner was Pink Floyd. Pink Floyd had a quadrophonic system set up and it was awesome, and I was in the medium seats. Yes, I was a HiFi nut back then (built my amp and preamp from Hafler kits, Shure V15 Type IV cartridge, etc) so I have some idea about sound quality.

      • Captain Spock says:

        I find my experience is skewed if it is one of my favorite bands, my brain seems to fill in missing pieces. I’ve really stopped going to concerts other then a few acts, and hope that they release a video or cd mixed from the soundboard.

  5. A_smilodon says:

    The problem here is that he went to a stadium show expecting good sound. Most stadiums don’t have good sound because they are not designed to be music venues. Your mileage may vary depending on where your seats are but in general they are best avoided if you care about the sound.

  6. Gambrinus says:

    It’s not really any secret that if you go to giant arena concerts, you’re going to pay a lot of money for inferior sound quality, be sitting a million miles from the artist, and very likely not even being able to dance. Unfortunately these shows still sell like wildfire, and for artists above a certain popularity level, there’s probably no other way to see them. Regular concert goers should know the venues in their area and be willing to make a decision about whether it’s worth it when their favorite artist shows up in town. I often say, “Man, I love that band, but that venue sucks, so I don’t think I’ll drop $200 on it.” Of course, I’m lucky enough to live in an area that has a venue that holds 10000 people that *doesn’t* suck. (Red Rocks Ampitheater, which is probably one of, if not the, best outdoor venues in the country) Sooo, yeah, that sucks, but it shouldn’t have been a shock, nor do I think the venue owes you anything.

  7. LoadStar says:

    This was a problem with the U2 concert I went to at Soldier Field. The sound was way overdriven, causing the whole show to sound very muddy. I plugged my ears up with my fingers and it sounded much better that way. Unfortunately, I left my earplugs at home, and looked and felt a bit ridiculous with my fingers in my ears, so I ended up just dealing with overdriven sound (and tinnitus for a couple of days after!)

    (P.S. – you’d think they’d sell earplugs at a show like this, but apparently not. I would have paid just about anything if they did.)

  8. AtlantaCPA says:

    I went to see the new Batman this weekend and I could only understand about every third word that Bane said. They put so much distortion on his voice it was all but unintelligible. And I’m not that old, lest anyone get any ideas…

    Not 100% related to the article but it’s in the same ballpark (or stadium, he he).

    • Loias supports harsher punishments against corporations says:

      The audio freaked me out, and I’m still not sure if it was the movie or the fact I was in a small-town theater I’d never been to.

      His voice was…so hard to describe…like it was recorded in a separate studio (it was I’m sure, but it didn’t have to SOUND like it was) it didn’t fit in the sound of the movie. I found it quite clear, but very “surreal” because it didn’t fit into the timbre of sounds from the rest of the movie. But it felt like someone in the theater was on a separate mic talking to us rather than it being integrated into the movie.

    • NickRayko says:

      +1.

      I saw it recently and like you, could understand little of Bane’s lines. Simply turning the volume slightly would have solved it.

  9. YouDidWhatNow? says:

    …apparently no one else has come in and derided country “music” in and of itself, so I guess I’ll go ahead and do it.

    COUNTRY ISN’T MUSIC! YOU SHOULD THANK THE STADIUM FOR MAKING IT UNINTELLIGIBLE!

    There, I feel better now. Seriously, anything other than country. Gangsta rap and concertos even. Country music: making the world dumber one twang at a time.

    • TheMansfieldMauler says:

      COUNTRY ISN’T MUSIC!

      Yeah, but what about Western?

    • nopirates says:

      +1,000,000

    • DoctorDawg says:

      But…but…but…she thinks my tractor’s sexy, right?

      Right, fellas? Guys?

    • dru_zod says:

      I agree with you if you’re talking about the “country” music that’s played on most country radio stations now. The endless songs about tractors, being “country”, living in the country, working on a farm, etc. are exceedingly dumb. However, they also don’t have all that much twang in them. The true country music that is not played on the radio anymore is actually pretty good, and quite intelligent.

      • hobochangbar says:

        True country music doesn’t fill stadiums either. Which is OK by me, give me bluegrass, alt country or traditional country in a small venue & I’m a happy camper. I stopped going to venues >5k seating a while back, not worth the hassle.

  10. Chickin-Pickin says:

    Outside venues always pose a problem with sound. The place we play weekly sounds completely different at practice and then when we play with people in the building.

    A good way to get better tix is to shell out a little for a membership on the artist’s website. Fan club members usually get first shot a pre-sale tix. The last few concerts I’ve been to we were within the first 8 rows on the floor.

  11. WWCrawford says:

    I am sorry to hear that you had a bad experience. Being a audio guy for the last 25 years and a “roadie” as well I can say that it is difficult in some venues to provide everyone with the same quality audio. This is something that myself and my coworkers stove to do every day and everywhere. One of my responsibilities was to walk the entire room at soundcheck and during the show to confirm that we had indeed accomplished our goal. Most of the time we did, some of the time we failed, usually for a small percentage of people sitting in a hard to get to location or where a rooms reflections were terrible. But we always tried our best.
    There are many people out there who consider themselves “sound guys” or “mixers”. For me, there are quite a few less. There isn’t a qualification process to be able to mix a band, just some basic knowledge of how to turn the knobs and push the faders. This leads to many people getting into the business that have very little knowledge and less desire to learn. Unfortunate.
    My first paid concert since getting off the road was a major disappointment. The seats we had were off to the side in a small arena, part of the first bowl. There were no, repeat, no speakers pointed directly at us. Very upsetting, considering the amount of energy I spent in my career trying to make sure that everyone received the same show audibly.
    Try to call the venue and find out who the promoter was, contact him and he may be able to direct you in the right direction. Good luck!

  12. Joedragon says:

    I been to sports events where the sound was carp and you can’t hear what they are saying.

  13. tomok says:

    I work at a concert venue and have worked in the concert industry for well over a decade. Many people don’t realize that if you go the box office and complain often times you can be relocated. Granted, if the show is sold out you’re probably SOL. But most shows these days are far from sold out.

    I can’t speak for all venues but I know we put seats on hold (i.e. they can’t be purchased by the public) specifically for relocation purposes. Sometimes it’s due to sightline issues (you never know with 100% certainty how a stage will set-up in your building until you actually, well…set it up) or sound issues (sometimes seats end up behind the speakers and that’s not good) or perhaps a seat is broken. Sometimes it’s something as uncontrollable as someone is sitting next to a rude patron.

    But you’re in that you’re purchasing something intangible and, more importantly, ephemeral. Once a show is over, it’s gone. And the chances of getting a refund are astronomical. If you bring us a legitimate complaint during the show we will do our best to find a suitable solution. But if you call a week later with that same complaint you will most likely be met with little to no sympathy. We can only really address an issue in real time.

    Furthermore, most bands at this level bring their own sound equipment and sound engineers. So it’s an aspect of the show that the venue has virtually no control over.

    • sea0tter12 says:

      Yup. We arrived at a Brad Paisley/Darius Rucker concert to find that our seats had speakers set up right in front of us, preventing us from seeing the middle of the stage. My friends wanted to just sit there, but I spent the opening act tracking down The Powers That Be and asking to be relocated. We got moved up very close to the stage, and apparently our whole row had been saved for relocations, because no one sat in the 4 or 5 seats next to us. So not only did we get much better seats, we had much of the row to ourselves to move around and dance.

      Also, I went to the Kenny Chesney/Tim McGraw concert in Charlotte a few weeks ago, and we were in the uppermost cheap seats. I thought the sound was fine for a stadium concert, but our stadium might have had a better setup.

  14. Jawaka says:

    IMO if your seats are so far away from the stage that they need to project the concert on screens then it defeats the point of going to the concert in the first place. May as well buy a live DVD for a fifth of the price and watch it at home.

  15. DoctorDawg says:

    Always demand a refund. If you don’t, they’ll never fix the problem. It costs them more to bring in remote satellite cabinets to fill those holes, and those people filling those seats are paying for it, but not getting what they deserve.

    Wanna try something cool, though.. if you’ve got money to burn, buy an in ear wireless receiver from either Shure or Sennheiser that operates in the 500MHz bandwidth (couple hundred bucks on eBay) and then bring it to your next concert. This is the slow part, but patience pays off. Change the bank number until the receiver light goes green, then switch through the channels, one at a time, until you find the lead singer’s mix. You’ll know what it’s like to actually be IN his/her head. Freaky cool!!!

  16. Klay says:

    OK. I have done concert sound, TV, radio and recordings for over 30 years. I have mixed groups from Peter, Paul and Mary to Cheap Trick and back again–from Maine to Mexico as it goes. I am that guy at the mixer–I control all that you hear. Well, most of it anyway. Over time a lot has changed with technology but one thing is fairly common: most venues suck. And suck big time. When venues are designed acoustic quality is often last and when budgets go–guess what gets cut: any kind of acoustic treatment. Big screen marquee and scoreboards: OK. Acoustic design and treatment? No way! Notice I’ve been going on about the room? The room is what affects the sound. I can put an extremely flat and well-adjusted system into a fucking barn of a basketball arena and guess what? It will sound like sound-in-a-barn-cave a few hundred feet out. Outdoors? Different story for another time. Most competent engineers will measure the response during sound check from many points in the arena and average the results–iPads and such make this very easy nowadays–and adjust for as even a coverage as possible. But if you are high up in the reverberant field (the area where you hear more room reverberation than sound out of the speakers) you are screwed. Then the room fills up. Different sound. Then the humidity changes. Different sound. No, we didn’t mix it that way–the room sucks and there is nothing you can do about it and as much as I try there is nothing I can do either. There is no electronic fix for bad acoustics. Period.

    • DoctorDawg says:

      So, since a whole lotta people’s smartphone have FM radio or at least can stream FM station websites, why don’t they broadcast the show over FM and you can pop in earphones to supplement the room? Extra bonus points if someone made an app that dialed up whatever delay you needed to compensate for the distance from the array to your head. Your body would still vibrate, you’d hear every lip-smacking whisper from the lead singer, and most important for us old guys, you could turn it DOWN if desired.

      And when the big finale hits, you could rip those suckers out of your ears and rock out with your cochleas out!

    • YouDidWhatNow? says:

      I concur. Physically, there is really nothing the techs can do.

      Which may lead one to question whether or not such venues should be hosting concerts. But that’s a whole ‘nother thing, now isn’t it?

  17. Fubish says: I don't know anything about it, but it seems to me... says:

    I’ve been to a number of concerts where the sound quality was detestable. Last time was in a theater in Burlington, Vermont for a Cajun/Quebecois concert and we left halfway through along with several other couples because of the over-amped and distorted sound. Even the ushers realized the problem. When I politely wrote to the manager and let her know of the problem, the response was something like ‘Jack the sound guy is very cool guy and he says the sound was A-OK.’

    We used to subscribe to their concert series, but haven’t been back since.

  18. Outrun1986 says:

    Its clear to me at least, in my area, that people are not going to concerts to listen to the music. They are going to party and drink with their friends and the band is simply an afterthought. Seems a bit crazy to me, as you are paying probably hundreds when you factor in the cost of tickets, parking and overpriced beer when you aren’t even going to listen to the band.

    I absolutely detest loud noise, even if its coming from a band that I like.

    I am surprised that no one else has caught onto my little trick, noise cancelling earphones are basically the same thing as earplugs. Most people own a set at least to my knowledge. Well at least mine are, I have the JVC Marshmallow’s, I simply bring them to every event and put them in even if I don’t actually attach them to a device. These headphones use basically the same type of foam used in earplugs. Everything sounds muffled just like it would if I had earplugs in. Its a lot cheaper and easier than putting in earplugs or having to source a set for each time I am somewhere with music that is too loud. I can still hear the sound through the headphones it just makes it more like its a normal listening volume and not blasting in my ears. I can also hear people talking through them, probably easier than I could if I was trying to hear them over the music.

  19. bbf says:

    Surprise, surprise, stadiums weren’t built to optimize sound quality. What else would a concert goer expect? If the bands really cared about sound quality, they would only play in amphitheatres and symphony halls… not jam everybody into a football/baseball/hockey stadium.

    It’s all about the $$$, sheeple. As long as people will pay >$100 for a ticket to a live concert with sh*tty sound, artists will keep on doing it.

  20. The Gray Adder says:

    The problem is getting sound to move through open air over any kind of distance with the same kind of sound equipment one might use in an auditorium. Baseball stadiums are not auditoriums; that was not the purpose for which they were built. I’ve been to a couple of open-air shows (never again), and the sound has always been terrible. You can stand close to the stage and get your ears blown out with badly distorted and very loud noise, or sit in the back and not hear much of anything recognizable as music.

    Because acoustics are non-existent, you’d have to wire up the whole venue with speakers if you want quality. I’m not sure how one would do this, but you couldn’t sell as many seats in the nosebleed section that way.

  21. Weekilter says:

    If he’s really concerned with sound save yourself $75 or more for a ticket and buy a CD from amazon.com for $15 and you can have great sound on that fancy component system you’ve tricked out in your living room.

    • IraAntelope says:

      I love my MP3…choice of 1000 songs, and I control them. last concert I attended, I had to stuff napkins in both ears, and my fillings still rattled. and you pay dearly for that torture.

  22. IraAntelope says:

    ya gotta get right up close to those huge speakers to really enjoy…so the noise blows the fillings out of your teeth. does not matter who is singing or what the lyrics are. concerts today are designed for rockers…no lyrics, no music, no sound quality, just noise.

  23. tuxman2 says:

    Worst yet is when I go, I go to listen not see, but the people around me want to talk about what they see on stage or yell with excitment when a song they like is played.

    I love live music, HATE the fans. I come to realize it just sounds much better on vinyl at home. So I don’t go anymore.

  24. agua says:

    I have to piggy back on what WWCrawford has detailed.

    I have been an audio engineer for about a decade–both studio and live–and have been touring nationally with an act the past year and a half. Every step in audio is an exercise in imperfection trying to get as perfect as possible even before the physics of sound waves come into the acoustic arena. But that’s another lesson for another time.

    Generally, touring engineers understand that you don’t necessarily mix for the FrontOfHouse (FOH) position. Ideally, FOH would be the most neutral *if* you get perfect coverage of the audible frequency spectrum from the speakers (and speakers are always the weakest link in any audio path–they are the most inaccurate of anything that passes electrical signal). There are rooms where this happens, but not as many as you might think.

    “Walking the room” is a necessity in any live situation; and you mix for where the greatest percentage of the audience is going to be. I can’t tell you how many nights I’ve had to listen to an unbalanced mix at the board so that the audience has the optimal experience– e.g. In more than a few rooms, due to the location of the sound board, I had to mix where the bass completely overpowered everything else (or was completely missing); and when I went to where the audience was listening, it sounded pleasant and balanced. Once you get a baseline of how “wonky” your mix at FOH has to be so that’s it’s balanced for the crowd, you can make changes appropriately. Obviously, this is not optimal, but the capital needed to acoustically treat any concert venue to ensure a perfect 1:1 input to output ratio over the 20,000 audible frequencies can break any budget out there.

    In some rooms, you can literally scoot over 5-10 feet and go from no bass at all to being bowled over by the bass. A 40 Hz wave (approx. the Low E on a Bass guitar) takes 28.25 feet to fully develop. Think of any enclosed area like a giant guitar. The size of the room will create frequencies that resonate or cancel each other out by virtue of the of each dimension of the room and its shape. Once you put multiple audio sources in any room, there is a lot of math and processing that has to be done to ensure that the sound from each speaker is reaching your ear at just the right time (this is called phase alignment).

    Also, the physics completely change when you go from an empty room (of any size) to a room full of walking, talking water bags. You can tune in a system perfect in an empty room, but the moment you start adding bodies and changing the temperature and humidity shit changes. Sometimes in ways that you can’t expect. Obviously, after many years, you can make educated guesses as to what might happen, but until the first note hits, it’s really a waiting game.

    I have mixed in about 170 different venues across the country (from 60 seat venues to 20,000 seat venues) and there are locations I relish and others that could crumble to the ground and I wouldn’t shed a tear. Stadium mixing is probably one of the most difficult. The physics and math of it all is a ton of fun and a ton of stress due to all the variables.

    To be a solid engineer, you have to be somewhat of a masochist, very used to taking all the blame and little of the credit, pay close attention to the stage and the audience, and know how to stroke egos just enough so that the promoters, the band, and your fellow techs are all comfy and trust you to do your job making your band sound great. Needless to say, that even the best of us can’t always get it right. And even if we do, if you’re sitting in the back of the room where frequencies are tumbling and fumbling over one another, it will still sound like mud not matter how perfect it is in the “sweet spot.”

  25. carterpeartford says:

    a couple years ago I saw Rush, of all bands. near the back of the pavilion it was like listening to Rush on a boombox 100ft away. one of the loudest bands in rock and they had the mixer set on about 3.5. I figure since the show was in DC there weren’t a lot of longtime fans there and they didn’t really seem to care about the rather lethargic crowd. everyone went to go see that guy that sings kinda high and that really good drummer guy. oh and that blonde guy with the guitar. all the computers and technology involved in FOH engineering and all they need to do is have someone stand at the back of the pavilion and realize “hey, it’s not loud enough”

  26. Clevelandchick says:

    Recently went to two concerts on two consecutive Mondays at the same venue (bought the tickets months ago), Jacob’s Pavilion in Cleveland and left early both times because the sound was so horrible.

    Florence + The Machine and Jane’s Addiction, both bands we’ve seen before at other venues in the past, so I know it wasn’t them and it was the venue’s sound system. We hadn’t been to this venue for 4 years but have been to several concerts there prior with no issue. The venue had been recently taken over by a different owner who apparently can’t be bothered to upgrade, fix or maintain the sound system.

    A friend of ours was so pissed off at the Jane’s Addiction concert he went up to the sound guy to complain and the sound guy told him to f**k-off. The venue has no website, it’s listed as a Live Nation venue, so when I got their inevitable survey I tore them a new one. I also went on their Facebook Page and left a nice long complaint.

    Two tickets to two concerts with charges and parking cost us almost $200 and we left early for both. The only area in the venue where the sound was halfway decent was behind the bleachers where they had the restroom trailers. We’re not going to hang out by the bathroom for 3 hours just to be able to hear the music.

    Yeah, I want my money back but obviously that’s not going to happen. I will never go there for another concert and will tell everyone I know not to bother.

    We’ve gone to Lollapalooza for about 5 years running, their sound is amazing at every stage you go to. If they can produce quality sound at a temporary outdoor venue, so could this place if they gave a damn.