ISSUE: Live Nation sets itself up for another failed festival


Editorial Board

Jan. 18, it was announced that all your favorite emo bands will be making a comeback during this year’s “When We Were Young” concert, slated for late October 2022. Pop-punk and emo scene favorites like Paramore and My Chemical Romance are headlining the three-day festival at the Las Vegas Festival Grounds.

This might appease all of our emo hearts to think of seeing our favorite bands perform again all in one place, but the announcement by Live Nation left some people concerned.

When the event was first announced, it was slated to be a single-day event Oct. 22 hosting 65 artists on “multiple stages,” Live Nation said.

Fans took to Twitter and TikTok to voice their disapproval, saying a concert in the middle of a pandemic, one that has no clear end in sight and may very well still be here in October, is a questionable decision.

Fans also took notice that the idea of having 65 of the most notorious bands of the early 2000s, (excluding the odd addition of TikTok star Lil Huddy), perform on one singular day would be disastrous. Hopping from stage to stage and picking between Pierce the Veil and Avril Lavigne was not a task that Twitter took a liking to.

The laughably cheap tickets and seeming lack of planning could lead to a similar outcome of Fyre Fest, the 2017 scam Bahamas getaway festival that promoted performances by multiple top artists. The festival ultimately failed due to lack of information and planning on the organizer’s behalf.

The event is put on by Live Nation, the same company that ran Astroworld, where a total of 10 attendees died on-scene or due to complications caused by the festival. The tragedy of Astroworld unfolded Nov. 5, 2021 in Houston. In addition to the 10 victims, over 300 other attendees were injured.

The concert, which was meant to hold over 50,000 people, quickly became overcrowded, and audience members were trampling over each other trying to get closer to the stage.

Despite all of the backlash, the Oct. 22 date sold out as soon as it was released Friday, Jan. 21. Live Nation announced that the festival would be extended to Oct. 23 to accommodate for the overwhelming amount of tickets sold – the second day selling out just as the announcement was made.

Twitter and TikTok stormed to film and make threads about why this added date was also problematic. Live Nation did add another date; however, they also announced that the lineup would be identical – leaving the stage-hopping problem unsolved.

The highly anticipated and hated festival added a third date slotted for Oct. 29, once again keeping the same general lineup as the previous two festival dates.

Only time will tell whether or not this festival will intersect with the ongoing pandemic, but overcrowding and untamable crowds are not problems exclusive to COVID-19.