UPDATE 21/11/16 5:10pm: The promoter has responded, pointing the finger at De La Soul.
US hip hop veterans De La Soul wrapped up their 2016 Australian tour over the weekend in extraordinary circumstances, with their second last gig of the tour at Sydney’s Greenwood Hotel reportedly lasting just 15 minutes.
The trio were scheduled to hit the stage at the Greenwood Hotel at 9:30pm as part of their show for Red Bull Music Academy, but reports from livid fans on social media suggest they arrived on stage later than 11:45pm, and were then promptly shut down at midnight due to the venue’s noise curfew.
@RBMA Delasoul at North Sydney tonight was a joke. Sound check started after 11pm. The other crew came on at 11:50. Sound turned off at 12pm
— dromeo_5 (@dromeo_5) November 18, 2016
After that, police reportedly became violent, with various punters alleging on Reddit that excessive force was used on restless and annoyed patrons after cops “turned up in numbers about 11:15”.
“After the gig a man throws a plastic cup with beer in at a cop,” said user 5stef4n. “The cop then picks him up and throws him headfirst into the concrete floor.”
Some punters have blamed the band for a lack of professionalism, but others have gone to town on the venue for shutting the gig down. It has been suggested that sound issues led to the late start.
“The mic check took a while and before they started they said they were trying to get things working right but the equipment wasn’t set up for them,” said Reddit user testsubject23. “There was some business issues with the gig that had delayed them, made it sound like the venue was screwing them.”
Others were pissed off that there was just no real explanation given, although a representative for promoters PSV Touring and Red Bull Music Academy and another for the Greenwood Hotel have shared statements of apology on Facebook and directed fans to ticket sellers Moshtix for refunds.
“Greenwood Hotel also sincerely apologizes. The delays that occurred tonight where in the hands of the promoters and out of the Venue and Venue managements control. However, this reflects poorly on our business, our reputation as a venue and our relationship with our customers and for that we sincerely apologise again.”
One fan responded on Facebook, saying, “Thank you very much at least for the update but it’s far more than we got last night – not a single word of communication about wtf was going on… What an absolute embarrassment to our city, it’s people in the biz like this who are what’s wrong with Sydney’s live music and club scene.”
Whatever the reason for their late start, it’s clear that De La Soul wanted to keep playing past midnight, as can be seen in an Instagram video of Maseo arguing with a venue security who is quite literally pulling the plug on the show. Fans can be heard “knock his fucking head off!” as De La Soul are forcibly removed by security.
Watch the video and read the full statements from the venue and from PSV Touring and RMBA, below.
Music Feeds has contacted De La Soul’s promoters for comment.