i've been a fan of rage against the machine
for quite a long time, and was particularly into them around the turn of the century when i was at uni. i was therefore upset and frustrated when they split up in 2000, especially as i never had a chance to see them live. opportunity knocked this summer and i was one of the lucky few to get a free ticket to their victory gig in london the other week. i took my camera, as well as a rucksack with amongst other things my spare lenses. as the headline act drew nearer i made my way closer to the front and drew a lot of comments from people remarking how brave i was to have my camera out at a rage concert. when they finally made it on stage it became apparent why. i don't think i've ever been in a crowd so violent and aggressive. that's not necessarily a condemnation, as it wasn't malicious or hostile, just heavy and potentially dangerous. i was pushed and pulled around, waves of people were swayed from side to side, losing balance and falling on each other. the audience helped each other up, and then the waves restarted and again we all fell down. it was completely lacking in any control so i knew that for my, and my camera's safety, i needed to retreat. this was easier said then done as i was pushed and spun around, with one hand for balance and the other clutching onto my camera. i remember at one point smashing a girl in the face with my lens - i tried to apologise but within seconds i was transported to another part of the field in the moving, living crowd. as i got to a safe distance a guy tapped me on my shoulder and asked if i knew my rucksack was wide open. i went to inspect, while simultaneously getting smacked in the face by another crowd surge (is that called karma?) my bag definitely looked and felt lighter. i prayed it wasn't an expensive lens that was the casualty, but looking back towards the crowd i knew whatever had come out was now long gone. so i decided to forget about it, enjoy the show and check later. thankfully the only item that was m.i.a. was my cheap ass camera case, which was always a little too small for my camera anyway, so that was best of a potentially bad situation. and i also managed to get a few shots i liked such as this so ultimately i had no long lasting regrets about taking my camera.
here's the original