If someone asked me what my favourite NOFX song was, the top-of-my-head answer would probably be Linoleum.
Not that I think it has the best lyrics – Franco Un-American has better lyrics. And for tunes, I actually like Liza and Louise or The Brews more.
It probably has to do with the fact that it was the first song they played in their first gig in Indonesia seven years ago, in 2007.
I can’t remember how many attended that concert, but an online report says it was about 5.000.
In a city of around 20 million, it wasn’t that much. But it was more about the sheer excitement of seeing a major punk band that the audience have been listening since they were in their early teens.
Back then, there had not been many international punk bands holding concerts in Indonesia, and I still can’t imagine how exciting it would have been for major fans of NOFX.
As I did not manage to get there super early, I wasn’t anywhere close to the stage, so I think there were about 3.000 people between me and the band, plus barricaded area in front of the stage.
So in a typical scenario, that would ensure me being untouched by whatever slamming, pushing or other shenanigans going on in the mosh/circle pit.
But when the first tune played, and yeah, I am pretty sure it was Linoleum, I felt myself being pushed backwards and basically swallowed by waves of human bodies. I can only imagine what it was like near the stage, but if I could feel the impact from that distance, it must be pretty mad.
I recently had a chance to watch NOFX again, this time in a closed venue in Melbourne, with probably a third, if not less, of the number of audience in the Jakarta gig.
It was sweaty, and packed as well, but this time there was a much bigger chance for me to get closer to the stage, and that I did.
Also, I have learned from experience that as a woman, mosh pits in Melbourne are generally safer compared to Jakarta. there are more women in Melbourne’s mosh pits, to begin with, and so far no one tried to grope me. Maybe things are better now in Jakarta, I don’t really know.
But I certainly got a better view of the band playing this time, and was more able to express my appreciation for their set (by jumping around and getting shoved, body-slammed, and headbutted) better as well.
So that was good.
But of course nothing can replace that gig in Jakarta, when half of my excitement was actually fueled by the awe and excitement of my friends.
It was a shame that there were some ugly rumors and happenings surrounding that concert. It was badly organized, for a start, and the waiting time for the gate to open was too long. I heard that there were troubles with their gig in Bali as well. My guess is the event organizers were young, reckless, and did not bother to check in with the scene.
Ah well, that is in the past. See? I am having trouble remembering the bad stuff yet getting all nostalgic with the good ones.