The gig was behind Tampere Talo, and It seems that the concert was aimed at promoting the fight against drugs and alcohol and a healthier life for the youngsters. So the point is that not only was forbidden to buy any alcoholic drinks from inside, but they made everybody blow into an alcohol test at the entrance! And they supposedly did not let anybody enter if they had drunk before! At this point, when I realize about the situation, there is this interesting dialogue between me and the person of the organization who handles me the little plastic tube to blow into:
Me: “Mutta… olen toimittaja…” (But…I am a journalist…)
Organization Guy: *“Ja Mitä? “ (So what?)
*(Finnish diplomacy at its best!)
I don´t really have any idea how these little machines work, since it was the first time in my life that they made me use one…and funnily enough, not driving! I had just happily drunk 2 cans of half a liter of beer before walking to the concert and they let me pass. But I found quite stupid that even journalists who go there to cover the concert had to go through the filter. In any case, my point is: are these solutions really effective? For me Rock has always been, and will be about sex, drugs, alcohol… resuming, everything considered as rule breaker. Because rock has always been dangerous, that is the essence of rock. Imaging rock fans and rock musicians behaving like model citizens would be like eating salad everyday with no salt, oil or vinegar to season.
I am already pretty pissed off with the general “amazing” ideas of the concerts organizers in Finland, that isolate the audience in stupid closed areas to drink that are usually half a kilometer away from the stage (so you have to decide between sacrificing half of a concert to get one beer…or no drinking at all) and now I assist to another “excellent idea”. The consequences is that the venue was half empty, since many people just found boring to go to a “dry rock concert” that starts so early in the evening to be surrounded just by teenagers.
Are these kinds of concerts the solution to teach the young Finnish generations how to have a healthier life? Sorry but I don´t think so. I am surely not the biggest expert to analyze the drinking problems of the Finns. You can find many theories: the weather, the darkness, the solitude, the big spaces that separate the houses, the shyness that needs to be broken with alcohol consumption… there are many explanations, and maybe no one is valid, or maybe they all have to do with the truth. But I would advice authorities to show youngsters other ways of fighting against alcoholism that screwing the atmosphere of a rock concert. The habits and culture of drinking and eating could be highly improved in many other ways: teaching youngsters to enjoy food while drinking, selling alcohol in smaller glasses that in pints (in my native Spain we have small glasses of beer, that we call “cañas” perfect to eat with some tapas) or making the point that drinking could be much funnier as a social habit that can be taken easy and moderated, instead of extended national trend of trying to end up wasted as quick as possible, alone at home, before hitting the nightclub. Meanwhile, please, let there be rock without blowing at the entrance any stupid plastic tube!!!