Sydney’s Botany View Hotel played host to one of the multiple stages for the 2016 King Street Crawl on Sunday. However, the gig, which was billing a garage rock fest of bands including Dumb Punts, Skegss and The Gooch Palms, ended up getting shut down, allegedly as the result of overly aggressive security guards.
Police say they were called to the venue at around 8.30pm because a bouncer had been assaulted, but James Gallagher of Melbourne act Dumb Punts reckons the response from law enforcement was way out of proportion.
Speaking to The Music, Gallagher says the whole thing started when bassist Toby Two String of Skegss had been drumming on stage with Dumb Punts and decided to head back into the crowd. As a result, security “pretty much chokeholded him to the ground”.
“I jumped down to help him out and I got pulled out and shit just hit the fan,” Gallagher said.
“Security were being fuckwits, [they’re] a bunch of peanuts with no interest in what’s happening in their venue.”
Gallagher reckons the crowd had been peaceful, apart from the one-off incident, even singing We’re Not Gonna Take It as a form of peaceful protest. The gig was shut down before The Gooch Palms and two other bands even got the chance to play, and Gallagher says he fears that Sydney’s “nanny state” has left venues more likely to close in fear of being fined.
“The only people who were trying to fight anyone was the security, bunch of meatheads,” he continues, “They get arked up and excited about the prospect of hurting someone.”
“No wonder no one in NSW gives a shit about the culture … Nothing like this has ever happened in Melbourne because security understand what they’re doing. You don’t see anyone staunching anyone. They’re supposed to be keeping the peace.”
Meanwhile, the cops told The Music, “the manager closed the venue; however those in the premises failed to leave and officers from Newtown Local Area Command were called.”
“The patrons in the venue eventually left the scene and the premises was closed. No one was arrested.”