We need to get rid of this macho bullshit attitude that dangerously loud gigs are a good thing

That’s the thread.


Whats the loudest gig you’ve been to Jordan?

I’d agree but on the condition that all attendees must wear a ball gag during the performance.


Yeah hate this nonsense. “Wow I went to see Sunn O))) and my ears were ringing for days!!!” – do you want a medal?

Remember going to see a (quite loud) Forest Swords gig a couple of years back in London who had brought in a tinnitus awareness charity stall with information on how to protect your hearing, people to chat to and free earplugs. In hundreds of loud gigs/clubnights this was the first time I’d seen any artist or promoter bother to be proactive about putting across information like this.



I love loud gigs, I love the feeling and the sensory overload.

I don’t think MBV/Sunn/Mogwai etc are ‘dangerously loud’ but if you’re near the stack or something then you clearly need to use hearing protection.

I think the more established artists are reasonably sensible and you are aware of what to expect, but I’ve been to some small gigs that were ear splittingly loud and that’s clearly going to cause issues if you’re going to lots of these and not looking after your ears.


Once went to a gig that was so loud it felt like I couldn’t get any air in my lungs

Jake Bugg.


A Place to Bury Strangers were ridiculously loud.


Motorhead melted the wax in my ears

I was about 22 at the time so that was pretty cooo

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What about the inevitable roof destruction that happens at every Kasabian gig?


Swans were incredibly loud, but it didn’t feel uncomfortable? felt awesome in the truest sense of the word.

MBV, that was just silly. amazing gig, but the ‘You Made Me Realise’ thing must have done a number on so many ears over the years, even if they were giving out ear defenders on the door


in addition to the macho loud gig thing, we need to get rid of wankers who talk over the quiet bits

cos I do understand that to at least some degree, playing loud is a way of forcing the music to be the thing that people pay attention to


I really enjoy feeling the sound pulse through my body at a loud gig. there’s nothing quite like a really good quality loud sound at a gig or a decent club. Ofc I now take earplugs to every gig

Ofc the macho bullshit should go out the window

Saw MBV and it was obviously Very Loud at the end, but they handed out earplugs before for those who hadn’t come prepared and everyone seemed to know the score and appreciate the experience.

But I still think the loudest gig I ever saw was Danaanananananananaananykroyd at Cardiff Barfly where everything was mixed so horrendously high and harsh (and in a tiny cave room with bad acoustics anyway) and it was just pain. I just got on with it at the time but in retrospect, not a great experience.


They should just play quieter then everyone (well not everyone) wouldn’t have to wear earplugs

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I think there is an experiential value in that level of sound, a physical feeling that is unlike anything else, but it has to be carefully managed. I don’t think it was done in a “macho” way. It was definitely preferable to Dana where they’d apparently just set everything to full volume for larks.




Tricky one isn’t it. There’s a kind visceral thrill to a sonic pummeling, but I guess if the majority of people watching might prefer to be wearing earplugs (whether they admit to it or not), then it probably needs turning down a bit.

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I always wear ear plugs at gigs. Love the sensation of being physically moved by the music, but I already have mild tinnitus - from playing at a friend’s wedding and having forgotten my earplugs off all things - and really don’t want it to get worse.

Plus with half-decent earplugs you remove some of the shrill, distorted high-end that you can get at loud gigs. Makes everything much clearer and more level.

Amongst my gig-going friends there’s also a definite split between people who are or have regularly been in bands (all wear earplugs) and those who haven’t (don’t wear them).