Posted in music | tour dates on August 18, 2011

Belgium

The Belgian music festival Pukkelpop Festival was hit with a severe storm today, which appears to have hit during or around the time of the Smith Westerns' set. Frontman Cullen Omori intially tweeted "Stage collapsed max almost got crushed by the tress. I hope pukkelpop has insurance bc all our shit is broke," but has since deleted it and followed up with, "Apologize to anyone who mistook tweet. Wrote direclty after running off stage. Just found out the extent of damage. All of prays go out to those hurt."

According to the Associated Press:

A storm swepts through an open air music festival in eastern Belgium on Thursday killing at least three people and injuring over 70 others, an official said.

Video from the site showed stage equipment dangling in high winds near the town of Hasselt, about 50 miles (80 kilometers) east of Brussels, as rain-soaked concertgoers at the Pukkelpop music festival ran for cover .

More than 20 ambulances were dispatched to the festival ground outside of Hasselt, a small town in eastern Belgium.

Hugo Simons, Hasselt's head of emergency planning, told VRT radio that 11 people were severely injured while 60 sustained light injuries as a result of the storm.

Hilde Claes, Hasselt's mayor, said those injured are taken to several nearby hospitals. Some of those lightly injured were being treated at a local sports complex.

Chokri Mahassine, the organizer of the festival, said "we have for now put the festival on hold until we understand the situation completely."

Dutch NOS television reporter Rick Hoogkamp, who was attending the concert, said the sky got dark, winds picked up violently and hailstones pelted those gathered.

He said several tents collapsed. Images of the disaster also showed fallen trees and fallen lighting scaffolds.

The festival's website lists a number of stages where concerts and performances were to be held during the three-day event, which started Thursday. Reports say some 60,000 people are attending the event. [ABC/AP]

All details are still not known and are being updated frequently as the news learns more details. Other bands scheduled to play the fest today are/were Foo Fighters, Thirty Second to Mars, Fleet Foxes, James Blake, The Streets, Chromeo, Battles and many more.

Stories like this are sadly and frighteningly becoming a common thing, seeing as a stage collapsed at Ottawa Bluesfest during Cheap Trick (who coincidentally play Brooklyn tonight), another one collapsed at Indiana State Fair, a camera boom fell during OMD's SXSW show, and The Flaming Lips experienced a similar disaster at the Brady District Block Party in Tulsa, OK earlier this month.

Update: the Smith Westerns issued a follow-up statement.

Our condolences to the family and friends of those who lost their lives and to the injured in Belgium. A video about the incident is at ABC's website, and there's two that showed up on Youtube already, below...

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Comments (163)

noooooo!!!! not Smith Westerns gear! FUCK!

Posted by Anonymous | August 18, 2011 4:19 PM

those smith western dudes are fucking trust fund brats, sorry someone died but what about my guitar?

Posted by Anonymous | August 18, 2011 4:19 PM

looks like mother nature hates the smith westerns too!

Posted by Anonymous | August 18, 2011 4:22 PM

Hey, go easy on these guys. He did end up saying "All of prays go out to those hurt." Not "some of prays" or "our prays."Thats a lot of prays.

Posted by Anonymous | August 18, 2011 4:25 PM

Give them a break! Losing your equipment sucks.

Posted by Mitchfork | August 18, 2011 4:28 PM

all your prays are belong to us.

even god hates outdoor music festivals.

Posted by Anonymous | August 18, 2011 4:30 PM

Classy.

Imagine if that type of storm hit Prospect Park. Or even McCarren Pool. What would you guys think then?

Posted by Anonymous | August 18, 2011 4:37 PM

We need to rewrite the instructions on how to assemble a stage apparently.

Posted by Anonymous | August 18, 2011 4:39 PM

Those look like fucking apocalyptic conditions. Why did they let the show keep going on?

Posted by Anonymous | August 18, 2011 4:43 PM

I think MC Hammer said it best:
http://youtu.be/uyTCa8v-ojU

Posted by Anonymous | August 18, 2011 4:44 PM

^ I was wondering the same thing.

Posted by Anonymous | August 18, 2011 4:44 PM

is global warming responsible for ALL THESE weather disasters?

Posted by Anonymous | August 18, 2011 4:49 PM

guess this shit is not just happening in indiana

Posted by Anonymous | August 18, 2011 4:56 PM

4:19- if they were trust fund brats, wouldn't they not care about the money to replace their gear? They soound like dicks, but that didn't make sense.

Posted by Anonymous | August 18, 2011 4:57 PM

if the naked wizard was there he could have saved everyone

Posted by Anonymous | August 18, 2011 5:01 PM

Good point 4:57. Just b/c the deaths/injuries are obviously more serious does not mean losing your equipment does not suck, too. I live in Chicago and am considering organizing a fundraiser for the Smith Westerns. Please follow my Twit account for details.

Posted by Mitchfork | August 18, 2011 5:04 PM

4:57 - that guy shows up in almost every other BV thread connecting everything, literally everything, to THOSE HIPSTER TRUST FUND KIDS. I think a hipster trust fund kid fucked his mom when he was little or something...

there's gotta be a connecting thread to all these collapses, right? some company that connects them all that made a really, really bad decision recently of some nature? it's not like you hear about multiple stage collapses every year... in around 2005-2006, there were a bunch of accidents involving the industry i worked in, and if you knew the industry you knew that they were absolutely connected - which came to light in the ensuing civil lawsuits...

Posted by Anonymous | August 18, 2011 5:08 PM

you know if you're going to be talentless hacks, you could at least have some class

fuck the smith westerns. dime a dozen assholes who are a fully bullshit band on top of it

Posted by Anonymous | August 18, 2011 5:17 PM

Mother nature agrees with me that music of 2011 is kinda shitshow

Posted by Anonymous | August 18, 2011 5:20 PM

the lead singer of smith westerns should cut his hair as Pavement once advised.

Posted by Anonymous | August 18, 2011 5:20 PM

the smith westerns are pulling $5k-15k a night for regular shows these days, at least double that for festival appearances.

they don't need your charity, "Mitchfork."

also, the smith westerns are a bunch of posers. Chicago could do better

Posted by Anonymous | August 18, 2011 5:21 PM

These are the same guys who pissed in a garbage can in the backstage area of Music Hall, got in fights at Market Hotel, and got kicked out by security from Bowery after a show they played. I wouldn't expect them to show any kind of class in any situation.

Posted by Anonymous | August 18, 2011 5:21 PM

they are cheap hipster trust fund brats, fucking misers

Posted by Anonymous | August 18, 2011 5:23 PM

hey mitchfork I thought you are a big rich lawyer - how are billing your clients for being on BV?

Posted by Anonymous | August 18, 2011 5:24 PM

kickstarter time

Posted by Anonymous | August 18, 2011 5:25 PM

I wouldn't mind, and I might even be amused by, the smith westerns being obnoxious fuckwads... if they were in any way an essential band

I think the freshman college age girlies like their "hair" or something. it sure ain't the songs, or the stage show!

marketing note to smith westerns: try not to get any older or less cute! the shit will not hold up

Posted by Anonymous | August 18, 2011 5:27 PM

SWs are overpaid and untalented.

Don't give them your money!

Posted by Anonymous | August 18, 2011 5:29 PM

Yeah, I am a lawyer. But I also have hobbies, including following, and supporting, independent music. Glancing at BV, and coming up with ideas to help support local music -- I am in Chicago, home of the Smith Westerns -- is a good use of my time. I bill plenty, believe me (2550 hours in 2010, but who is counting). I know that the band gets paid decently for gigs, but losing equipment can be very tough for a young band. I think this is an opportunity to organize a cool event where we could raise money to help these kids out. Also, I ran into the band a couple times, at Pitchfork and a local restaurant, and they seemed like decent guys. Don't hate on them, just because they had some bad luck.

Posted by Mitchfork | August 18, 2011 5:31 PM

^^^ Dude... You sound like a nice guy with the energy and organizational skills to pull off a fundraiser.

For the love of god, feed the fucking homeless or help cancer patients.

Those guys will get their gear back and they have insurance.

Posted by Anonymous | August 18, 2011 5:37 PM

I am actually requesting a little more hate please... just a scosche more please.

Thanks!(hate you)

Posted by Anonymous | August 18, 2011 5:39 PM

the smith westerns are doing better financially, buzzwise, and in terms of how well off their families were to begin with, than about 99.999% of all bands that exist on the planet

they do not need any charity organisation to help them "get back on their feet"

Posted by Anonymous | August 18, 2011 5:43 PM

Show a little compassion, people. If you don't want to be involved with a potential fundraiser for the band, that is completely fine. If you think it's a decent idea, contact me through my Twitter and we will talk. Regarding more worthy charities -- yes, of course, there are tons of other people in need, too. Helping starving children and the Smith Westerns to buy new amps is not mutually exclusive.

Posted by Mitchfork | August 18, 2011 5:52 PM

we're lucky none of the smith westerns themselves died or got hurt, imagine the unbearable eulogies. it would have catapulted their pr operation into the stratosphere as well. we might never have been rid of them.

luckily, since the smith westerns managed to survive (not unlike cockroaches or rats) they can now face up to a far more just and deserved endgame: eventual inevitable obscurity

Posted by Anonymous | August 18, 2011 5:55 PM

Im a stagehand and I think i just finally quit my job. Holy shit.

Posted by Anonymous | August 18, 2011 5:56 PM

Sorry to say but the gear they lost was highly likely rented backline for their european tour which in that case,the rental company takes a hit on the destroyed amps and drums. Losing guitars sucks -Agreed, but cmon really.. Chances are this young band that gets to play major festivals has a very good manager and in turn- endorsements. Simply call up Gibson and get a new guitar and pay respects to the dead firstly.

Posted by Anonymous | August 18, 2011 6:00 PM

Mitchfork.

Ballpark estimates, but the Smith Westerns organisation has likely grossed in the $500,000 range in the past year. I say this as at talent buyer, who has worked with the band. Why should they be the recipients of charity?

Given their income, it would be negligent of the band and their management to not carry insurance, in fact.

They may not be a household name, but they are doing well: much better than most of their peers and fans.

Posted by Anonymous | August 18, 2011 6:03 PM

WHAT A BUNCH OF ASSHOLES

FUCK THIS BAND

Posted by Anonymous | August 18, 2011 6:06 PM

PUNK AS FUCK

Posted by Anonymous | August 18, 2011 6:10 PM

punk? punks don't call their lawyers

Posted by Anonymous | August 18, 2011 6:12 PM

Fuck Smith Westerns. They managed to piss everyone off in Chicago now Belgium hates them too. Great job, assholes.

Posted by Anonymous | August 18, 2011 6:13 PM

the smith westerns aren't worthy of all this discussion. they're lucky they're even getting booked on festivals

if you want to raise money, raise it for the families of the people who died today

Posted by Anonymous | August 18, 2011 6:15 PM

what a callous motherfucker

you suck, smith westerns dude

Posted by Anonymous | August 18, 2011 6:19 PM

Wish this happened at every Siren Fest ever.

Posted by Anonymous | August 18, 2011 6:21 PM

somebody punch the smith westerns in the face, pls

Posted by Anonymous | August 18, 2011 6:24 PM

I kinda like the Smith Westerns' album. It's catchy, a lot of hooks, some good guitar stuff. Not bad for some snot-nosed brats.

Posted by Anonymous | August 18, 2011 6:32 PM

smith westerns SUCK!
moustaches SUCK!
frohawks SUCK!
skinny pants SUCK!

Posted by Anonymous | August 18, 2011 6:34 PM

not in a rush to defend these guys, and certainly don't think it's any reflection of sterling character to participating in this "whatta douche!" sideshow (false imposition of our own moral superiority when we're doing exactly what he did -- catering to egos when, you know, people are dead). but, in all fairness, in one of those insufferable interviews they gave (chicago reader) they talked about how broke they were and how badly they wanted to upgrade their equipment. and he apologized.

Posted by Anonymous | August 18, 2011 6:34 PM

6:34 - yes, well I guess you can add "they are liars" to the list then.

the smith westerns are a well paid band. they were also wealthy kids to begin with.

Posted by Anonymous | August 18, 2011 6:40 PM

ok we have established that the band are out of line..

What needs to be done ASAP is a complete overhaul of structual design reguarding these stages and the impact of weather on them. People ARE dying and its too late. I expect major changes in the way we experience outdoor concerts. If not, would you feel safe in the rain at a show like these?

Posted by Anonymous | August 18, 2011 7:04 PM

dude, hes lying. mitchfork is a 20-something virgin living with his parents. theres no "fundraiser"

Posted by Anonymous | August 18, 2011 7:08 PM

Figures that most BV posters would continue to be spineless pussies more interested in criticizing a band than focus on yet another festival tragedy

Posted by Anonymous | August 18, 2011 7:32 PM

ok ASAP we need to put a halt on the "underground" music machine for the rest of the year. lets cancel CMJ and all the fall tours. serisiously guys, better safe than sorry. plus it will give the musicians some time to brush up on talent and new ideas. find a couch everyone, and scope out a decent dumpster. it's gonna be a long winter.

Posted by Anonymous | August 18, 2011 7:36 PM

I'm not defending the Smith Westerns behaviour but it might be worth remembering that nobody knew anything about any fatalities here till at least 30 minutes after their first tweet. They actually tweeted as trees fell & followed up pretty quickly after deaths were confirmed with a more sober tone.
Don't let that stop you hating on them for their transgressions elsewhere though...

The more important issue here is this:
Every band that plays summer festivals looks upon them as a payday. Generally doubling their fees (at least). Over the past 5 - 10 years the amount of new festivals cropping up has been astronomical which not only leads to crushing Hamptons-esque failures but to the major festivals competing with trust fund hipsters (I couldn't resist) who will spend their parents money driving up the costs of headliners by entering bidding wars.

As festival promoters are paying increasingly high fees for talent while the ticket sales and sponsorship dollars are being spread thinner across more events it stands to reason that people are cutting costs. I'm sure it's been getting chipped away at over a number of years and this year has seen multiple catastrophes and deaths around the world.

Pukkelpop and Ottawa Bluesfest aren't tinpot operations by any means. They should know better but this is exactly what happens when the only thing you have left to try and save money on is health and safety.

I only hope that this leads to tighter outdoor health and safety regulations whereby everyone from bands, agents and managers to the sponsors, promoters and fans alike are forced to accept paying more or making less and ensure a safe environment for everyone.

Posted by Anonymous | August 18, 2011 7:39 PM

any update on Smith Westerns' gear? Will the guitars at least be alright?

Posted by Anonymous | August 18, 2011 7:52 PM

DAMN!! What is going on? I was at the Original Woodstock Festival in 1969, and all I can say is, Thank God there wasn't a collapse of the stage or Speaker Towers there, when the Storm,(which began when Joe Cocker was on the stage), raged over us. That rain and wind were just as heavy as it was today at the PukkelPop Music Festival!!
Do you think Mother Nature just doesn't like Outdoor Music Festivals anymore? My thoughts are with all those that were attending "Pukkelpop". .

Posted by The_Voyager | August 18, 2011 8:43 PM

these festivals are expensive, yet skimpy on the services, because the bands and their agents are money grubbing bastards

also... it begs the question of why the pool of bands who get asked to play festivals is so tiny? well, that's easy: the "indie rock system" is broken and a small group of agents, publicists, and websites dictate what gets attention. They make or break the "safe" choices, and those same 20 or so "safe choice" bands are the only ones getting asked to play every festival.

most of those bands, like the smith westerns as a perfect example, don't deserve to even be headlining regular shows, much less pulling $25k plus flights and hotels for fly in one-off festival appearances.

Posted by Anonymous | August 18, 2011 8:46 PM

can somebody pleaze update us on how smith westerns' gear is doing?????

Posted by Anonymous | August 18, 2011 8:48 PM

anybody (not just a spoiled musician) who IMMEDIATELY posts a message like that, after an incident like that, is lame on all levels.

no, there is not leeway here for "but he did remove the post quickly."

if you are one of their fans, find a new band to love. think about how spoiled that guy is. to post about equipment before finding out about possible injuries to people.

hope their 15 minutes are up SOOOOOON

Posted by Anonymous | August 18, 2011 8:54 PM

smith westerns < human garbage

Posted by Anonymous | August 18, 2011 8:59 PM

The band probably did not know the extent of the damage when they walked away.

Posted by Anonymous | August 18, 2011 9:02 PM

Thank you Based God.

Posted by Anonymous | August 18, 2011 9:07 PM

YO, SYCOPHANTIC PINHEAD

the band cared more about their equipment than anything or anyone else. that is obvious from their message, released initially/immediately after walking off stage.

do not apologize for spoiled musicians

Posted by Anonymous | August 18, 2011 9:12 PM

this remark, on top of their mediocrity, should ruin their career, and it definitely would if not for the synergistic incestuous cabal that makes/breaks the indie rock "fame" thing

but you see, the agents, labels, publicists, and website operators have already made these guys what they are... it's their money on the line

Posted by Anonymous | August 18, 2011 9:18 PM

Smith Westerns and Liturgy should totally do a split 7 inch....and nobody would buy it.

Posted by Anonymous | August 18, 2011 9:24 PM

what a prick

he should be in a better band if he wants to get away with acting like that

Posted by Anonymous | August 18, 2011 9:33 PM

I can't believe you people are pointlessly shitting on this band on this forum when you could be using this forum to pointlessly express regret and uselessly offer sympathy about the people who died. that's how we *really* make a difference!

Posted by Anonymous | August 18, 2011 9:59 PM

Hank Scorpio's weather machine really works

Posted by Anonymous | August 18, 2011 10:06 PM

also, smith westerns are douchy hacks and though we're all afraid to express it... it maybe should have been them killed by a collapsing tent column at their show, if it was gonna be anyone killed by a collapsing tent column at their show. certainly better them than innocent fans just trying to spend their euros and have a good time. the band's management doubtless kind of wishes this were the case: they'd sell more downloads for a longer period of time out of tragedy than they ever will as a flavor of the month. if just one of the dudes dies and they could still tour as a "broken" band... KA-CHING!

Posted by Anonymous | August 18, 2011 10:07 PM

You guys are really being simplistic. Why can't people acknowledge that there is a great tragedy (deaths, injuries) and losing the equipment is also a tragedy, albeit a clearly lesser one? I find it interesting that people on this site, many of whom I presume are in indie bands, have no sympathy for this young group. Talking to my musician friends in Chicago, people are sympathetic, and there is interest in having a modest, respectful fundraiser for the band to help them replace the equipment. I hate to say it but maybe we are just more sensitive because we are in the midwest? Just two weeks ago the city came together to help Portugal, the Man find their equipment. In that situation, I was a little skeptical at first, but ultimately it was about the music and helping artists. The Smith Western are artists -- it is unfair to speculate about their personal behavior, which I assume is the same as many of those on this site, who go out and have a good time. Anyway, I am glad that people in Chicago are interested in helping the band, and that a few people from this site have also contacted me about getting involved.

Posted by Mitchfork | August 18, 2011 10:34 PM

THESE GUYS ARE WEALTHY AND INSURED

THEY DON'T DESERVE CHARITY

Posted by Anonymous | August 18, 2011 10:36 PM

it's rental gear dude. they don't even own it! bands don't bring their amps and drums on airplanes when they tour other continents.

Posted by Anonymous | August 18, 2011 10:43 PM

at first I thought it was odd that so many people would only be talking about Smith Westerns and not the people killed but then I remembered what site I was on

Posted by Anonymous | August 18, 2011 10:46 PM

'Losing equipment is also tragedy'

'maybe we are more sensitive because we are in the midwest'

Posted by Anonymous | August 18, 2011 10:47 PM

yes, talking about the people killed would:

A) really help those dead folks, and their families

and

B) would be SUPER INTERESTING. there's so much to say there.

Posted by Anonymous | August 18, 2011 10:58 PM

@10:58 its about keeping things in perspective. The tweet is meaningless compared to this and is completely non-newsworthy

Posted by Anonymous | August 18, 2011 11:05 PM

11:05

simple question: do you work for the band?

Posted by Anonymous | August 18, 2011 11:10 PM

no I just have common sense

Posted by Anonymous | August 18, 2011 11:12 PM

how is this Cullen guy getting away with saying that shit??

he obviously doesn't appreciate how lucky he is to even have an audience.

Posted by Anonymous | August 18, 2011 11:13 PM

how fucking retarded is everyone that they are choosing to ignore the fact that he wrote it BEFORE he found out people were killed. People just want to take the opportunity to shit on SW

Posted by Anonymous | August 18, 2011 11:15 PM

so, let me see if I follow you here...

This comments thread, on Brooklyn Vegan, is not the appropriate time or place to criticize this band for tweeting an obviously offensive, self-centered remark in the midst of a tragedy where people DIED.

Could you tell me what forum, and when, would be appropriate? Because that twitter post was pretty goddamn fucked up! what kind of a piece of shit would say that? seriously

Posted by Anonymous | August 18, 2011 11:31 PM

Are the Smith Westerns the new Wavves?

Posted by Anonymous | August 18, 2011 11:43 PM

^^
11:31
The kind who didn't know how serious the tragedy was or that people DIED when he tweeted it.
What kind of person who can type can't also read?

Posted by Anonymous | August 18, 2011 11:44 PM

"how fucking retarded is everyone that they are choosing to ignore the fact that he wrote it BEFORE he found out people were killed. "

I agree. It is not common for people to die during a concert. He probably thought everyone was alright.

Posted by Anonymous | August 18, 2011 11:44 PM

you sure read PR real good

Posted by Anonymous | August 18, 2011 11:47 PM

ladies and gentlemen, I invite you to follow this thread for the next 12 hours or so, while a succession of indie music industry interns try their best to impersonate "fans" standing up for this band.

meanwhile, remember that this band's first impulse, after watching a huge stage rig collapse at a crowded festival, was to tweet about suing the organizers over their broken amps and drums.

apparently, it would have been MADNESS to be concerned about the thousands of fans still stuck out in the torrential storm, and under the weight of tonnes of staging... "fans" and "common sense defenders" of this band will get on here to convince us all that Cullen and his friends had NO WAY of knowing that a huge, steel stage rig might damage more than their gear when it came down. He's not a dick, just spoke too soon! He just figured stages collapse onto crowds and everyone just wiggles out and is fine.

MAKES SENSE

Posted by Anonymous | August 18, 2011 11:55 PM

YESSSS
a new fantastic thread
keep em comin folks. lets make this one last

ok - 1) to people who might know - how much does each member of smith westerns probably make per year? (lets say 2009-2010, or 2010-2011). just curious!

2) is mitch from chicago a bot? wtf??

3) to everyone that's trying to make a moral point or something: uh, YEA it's an excuse to talk shit! SHIT IS SHIT


Posted by Anonymous | August 19, 2011 12:08 AM

THE TEA PARTYS TRYIN TO BAN PR IN INDIE!

Posted by Anonymous | August 19, 2011 12:09 AM

YO RON PAUL SAYS HE'LL GET RID OF THE IRS ... AND GORILLA-VS-BEAR !!! FUCK THE DEMS THEN!

Posted by Anonymous | August 19, 2011 12:10 AM

the ja cuzzi boys stole the smith westerns van and all of their equipment

Posted by Anonymous | August 19, 2011 12:14 AM

they are really young guys, give em a break, they are the next T-rex, just wait until they play MSG, you will all be kissing their asses

Posted by Anonymous | August 19, 2011 12:16 AM

fuck these guys, they're toast

Posted by Anonymous | August 19, 2011 12:19 AM

tribe vs abrahams hummos ?

Posted by Anonymous | August 19, 2011 12:20 AM

Cheap Trick's set cut short tonight because of storm coming in.....

Posted by Anonymous | August 19, 2011 12:21 AM

oh fuck that sucks :/

yo is anyone else tryin to riot this summer? im super down. meet me at mccarren park tomorrow (greenpoint) at 7pm. we'll riot all the way to bay ridge. bring booze for drinkin stuff

Posted by Anonymous | August 19, 2011 12:23 AM

oyyyy. damn whats with that??

ooo toast and hummos .. yumm

hey have you guys been to M. Wells yet ?

Posted by Anonymous | August 19, 2011 12:26 AM

if you're thinkin about letting Smith Westerns off the hook because "there was no way they could have known people might be hurt"...

watch the videos first. read the newsreports

look at that rain. it was beyond monsoon level. plus the newsreports said the the "chateau" where they were playing FLATTENED in 2 minutes. It wasn't just the stage trusses falling down. you'd have to be blind and deaf to not see there was the possibility of actual real danger.

If Cullen and his bandmates were too oblivious to consider that some fans might be hurt (or killed) in THE ENTIRE VENUE BEING FLATTENED, then maybe they aren't thinking much about their fans, eh?

Posted by Anonymous | August 19, 2011 12:27 AM

stick a fork in these guys

Posted by Anonymous | August 19, 2011 12:29 AM

To everyone defending SW because this was their "initial" tweet and was later "retracted," I beg you to consider this...

Who the FUCK writes something like that "directly after" coming off of a falling stage? The fact it even crossed his mind to tweet and complain to the world about Pukkelpop (especially if he thought the damage was only a slight accident!) shows how childish this brat is.

Posted by Anonymous | August 19, 2011 12:31 AM

The King Douchebag Tour - starring Morrissey, Wavves, and Smith Westerns.

Coming to Terminal 5 this fall!

Posted by Anonymous | August 19, 2011 12:36 AM

whats funny is that people pretend that they are so outraged at something as fucking dumb as this and ignore the fact that something much more serious than a tweet has taken place. And you act like they're the children?

Posted by Anonymous | August 19, 2011 12:37 AM

yes, as long as people are dying on planet earth we should refrain from criticizing people who say mindbogglingly selfish things... particularly if the people are dying within feet of them and they're only concerned about their personal property

Posted by Anonymous | August 19, 2011 12:40 AM

everytime we post about the Smith Westerns being douchebags, another Dutch festival goer dies

Posted by Anonymous | August 19, 2011 12:46 AM

@12:40 the fact that you need to exaggerate by saying people were dying within feet of them makes says everything. Read the story dumbass

Posted by Anonymous | August 19, 2011 12:54 AM

smith westerns emergency pr department is gettin upset

Posted by Anonymous | August 19, 2011 12:57 AM

not as upset as over a hundred people pretending to be angered. And its probably not that many since most comments come from the same person

Posted by Anonymous | August 19, 2011 1:01 AM

from msnbc:

http://today.msnbc.msn.com/id/44192782/ns/today-today_news/t/die-storm-slams-belgium-music-fest-us-band-safe/

"In the smallest tent, the Chateau, the support structure broke, The Standard reported. The boiler-room partly collapsed.

"The Chateau was flat in one minute, while the Smith Westerns played. Everything collapsed or blew away," said The Standard journalist Peter Vantyghem, who was injured."

YOU WANT ME TO BELIEVE THAT THE SMITH WESTERNS DIDN'T "GET" THAT THIS SHIT WAS DANGEROUS AND THAT FANS MIGHT BE INJURED?

Posted by Anonymous | August 19, 2011 1:04 AM

I'm pIcturing an interview with John Norris in Smith Western's near future. "Misunderstood" will be the message.

Posted by Anonymous | August 19, 2011 1:05 AM

I'm assuming they didn't know much of anything since they were immediately taken off stage and probably didn't stick around to attend to injured festival goers

Posted by Anonymous | August 19, 2011 1:08 AM

they pretty clearly didn't give a damn whether festival goers were injured or not

Posted by Anonymous | August 19, 2011 1:10 AM

you must of gotten that from: "Apologize to anyone who mistook tweet. Wrote direclty after running off stage. Just found out the extent of damage. All of prays go out to those hurt."

Posted by Anonymous | August 19, 2011 1:24 AM

1:24

it's no surprise to anyone that smith westerns has grown ups working for them who caught the situation and tried to do damage control. it doesn't forgive the original tweet that cullen himself actually wrote.

you've got an uphill battle in front of you convincing people that Smith Westerns, who had just watched the entire tent venue around them collapse in under a minute, plus were personally in danger from falling trusses, plus could see the hurricane level wind and rain... didn't realize that people in the crowd were also in danger

Posted by Anonymous | August 19, 2011 1:35 AM

A lot of people seemed grump and must have missed their snack times. I hate it when I don't hate it when I don't have my share of hummus.

Posted by Anonymous | August 19, 2011 1:42 AM

poor editing 1:42

if you gotta go back and reedit your post to make it funny, maybe wait till yr more inspired

Posted by Anonymous | August 19, 2011 1:45 AM

Douchebags!!

Posted by Anonymous | August 19, 2011 1:47 AM

I would never convince anyone of anything on the internet of all places. But to say that they knew people were hurt is speculative at best and doesn't hold up. Why tweet something about equipment then delete and post an apology if they knew all along people were hurt?

Posted by Anonymous | August 19, 2011 1:48 AM

worthless asshole band

Posted by Anonymous | August 19, 2011 1:50 AM

no they're pretty good. You should listen to DYE IT BLONDE. Good stuff

Posted by Anonymous | August 19, 2011 1:51 AM

^ Smith westerns mommy.

Posted by Anonymous | August 19, 2011 1:53 AM

Even Chicago hates these little brats.

Posted by Anonymous | August 19, 2011 1:54 AM

fatpossumwindishforcefieldmanagement wrote the follow up tweet guaranteed

Posted by damage control | August 19, 2011 2:00 AM

2:00am no question about it

Posted by Anonymous | August 19, 2011 2:02 AM

who gives a fuck? You read more offensive posts on this site in 5 minutes than anything on Twitter

Posted by Anonymous | August 19, 2011 2:09 AM

hmmm 2:09, why would I give a fuck?

Well, it's because it's really insulting to watch PR operations try to do surgery on the facts and shove ugly details down the memory hole.

It's offensive that buzzy bands get off the hook for inexcusable behavior because moneyed interests with media connections have a stake in them.

On top of that, it's patronizing to watch clumsy, obvious damage control in action, with the not-so-subtle presumption that the audience is too dumb to notice.

But most of all, it's because people DIED and this snot-nosed,m barely qualified band trivialized the situation, shit all over the organizers (who were undoubtedly, at that moment, dropping everything to help injured people and SAVE LIVES) and threatened to sue them in the most petty way possible over their rented tour gear.

Smith Westerns' management/agency/publicist team thinks they can put the genie back in the bottle and salvage their investment in this privileged band of pretty boys. They shouldn't be allowed to get away with it.

This obnoxious fuck up should screw up Smith Westerns reputation just as much as it would screw up anyone else's.

Posted by Anonymous | August 19, 2011 2:56 AM

I still don't give a fuck

Posted by Anonymous | August 19, 2011 2:59 AM

if only a stage would of fallen on 2:56 I wouldn't of had to read that diatribe

Posted by Anonymous | August 19, 2011 3:03 AM

this band sucks, on record and as people apparently

Posted by Anonymous | August 19, 2011 3:07 AM

See, I think the real fucked up thing here is that immediately after fleeing a trashed stage admist severe, life-threatening weather conditions - his first concern is going on the Internet and posting something on TWITTER.

Posted by Anonymous | August 19, 2011 8:53 AM

OK KIDS, TIME FOR ME TO JUMP ON THIS MO-FO BANDWAGON.

FIRST OFF, YEAH, I'M A TYPIN' IN CAPS. BACK OFF BITCHES.

SECOND, S&W, YOU FUCKING CHUMPS PLAY BASIC INSTRUMENTS WITH BASIC TUNINGS, ETC. AS IN, YOU CAN REPLACE YOUR EQUIPMENT WITH PRETTY MUCH ANYTHING. AT LEAST WHEN SONIC YOUTH HAD THEIR STUFF STOLEN BACK IN THE LATE '90S, THAT WAS SOMETHING TO BE CONCERNED OVER BECAUSE THEY WERE ALL SO UNIQUE AND MODIFIED TO THE POINT OF NEVER REPLICATING.

OH, AND I ALMOST FORGOT ... HA. THE FUNNY THING IS, PEOPLE CARE ABOUT SONIC YOUTH BECAUSE THEY CARE ABOUT PEOPLE. THEY SUPPORT UNKNOWN BANDS AND HELP THEM GET ON LABELS.

YOU, HOWEVER, ARE FUCKING TRUST FUND ASSHOLES WHO SEEM TO CARE ONLY FOR YOUR INSTRUMENTS AND NOT THE LIVES OF OTHERS.

FUCK
YOU.

Posted by Anonymous | August 19, 2011 9:54 AM

Twitter creates more problems than it solves. It was better when people thought before they decided to share those thoughts with everyone.

Posted by Anonymous | August 19, 2011 10:06 AM

so basically think before twatting.

Posted by Anonymous | August 19, 2011 10:49 AM

why is it that 'trust fund' has been mentioned constantly? I was unaware people knew so much about the bands personal finances

Posted by Anonymous | August 19, 2011 10:54 AM

They're upper crust kids from wealthy suburban Chicago families

Posted by Anonymous | August 19, 2011 10:58 AM

Who fucking tweets about shit right after an fucking circus tent collapses with you in it

Posted by Anonymous | August 19, 2011 11:12 AM

anyone with a phone

Posted by Anonymous | August 19, 2011 11:38 AM

trust fund mentioned constantly apparently means three posts out of 13

Posted by Anonymous | August 19, 2011 11:59 AM

learn to count 11:59. They're are 135 comments

Posted by Anonymous | August 19, 2011 12:05 PM

The North Shore is kinda like the Hamptons of Chicago. Lots or douchey rich people.

Posted by Anonymous | August 19, 2011 12:10 PM

Learn to use proper grammar, 12:05. It's "There".

Posted by Anonymous | August 19, 2011 12:45 PM

***poof***

Learn to respect me ...all of you.

***poof**

Posted by Anonymous | August 19, 2011 12:53 PM

shouldn't you be at work or something 12:45 instead of trolling the internet looking for spelling mistakes?

Posted by Anonymous | August 19, 2011 12:55 PM

these guys are sucky people

Posted by Anonymous | August 19, 2011 12:57 PM

what does pukkel mean

Posted by Anonymous | August 19, 2011 1:06 PM

these stage collapses are going to make festivals prohibitively expensive to get permitted and insured

if the festivals stop happening, the buzz bands and their agents will stop making money

the indie buzz cycle will die

AWESOME

Posted by Anonymous | August 19, 2011 1:18 PM

Fuck that a bunch of my friends went to that concert and I cant get a hold of them, who the fuck cares about what some douchebag said , worry about the people that got injured

Posted by Anonymous | August 19, 2011 2:23 PM

so you're looking for your friends here on brooklyn vegan?

Posted by Anonymous | August 19, 2011 2:48 PM

sws = d bags

Posted by Anonymous | August 19, 2011 2:51 PM

talking about this dickhead's tweet doesn't help or hurt the people who were injured or died.

it makes no difference at all

Posted by Anonymous | August 19, 2011 3:01 PM

smash the smith westerns gear next time you see them

Posted by Anonymous | August 19, 2011 3:08 PM

"it makes no difference at all"

maybe but it was so insignificant that its remarkable that so many people on this site are still talking about it. This is the only site where people are actually upset about something no one else cares about. It makes everyone on here look like soiled little assholes

Posted by Anonymous | August 19, 2011 3:20 PM

terrible thing to happen

kind of make paying attention to buzz bands seem silly

Posted by Anonymous | August 19, 2011 3:20 PM

I'm sure it's easy to feel that way when you work for the band, 3:20

Posted by Anonymous | August 19, 2011 3:32 PM

actually with my trust fund finally kicking in I work for nobody

Posted by Anonymous | August 19, 2011 3:35 PM

yes it's very very insignificant

look away people, nothing to see here

don't doubt for sec that the sws are upstanding guys who deserve to get rich and famous.

every time to doubt the sws, another Belgian dies under a circus tent in a field

Posted by Anonymous | August 19, 2011 3:35 PM

i hope Anonymous take down all the indie blogs before the year end lists

let's start over

Posted by Anonymous | August 19, 2011 3:40 PM

3:20, I'm pretty sure nobody comes out of this looking more like spoiled little assholes than your boys the Smith Westerns do

Posted by Anonymous | August 19, 2011 3:44 PM

What a shitty thing to say right after the stage fell down

Posted by Anonymous | August 19, 2011 3:47 PM

3:44- right because in the end once all the bodies are buried and the festival is cleared away people will always remember what that guy from that band said on Twitter. All the deaths and destruction will pale in comparison to the insensitive comment that was left on the internet

Posted by Anonymous | August 19, 2011 3:51 PM

how would letting the Smith Westerns guy off the hook for being a total bastard save these people's lives or honor their memory?

Posted by Anonymous | August 19, 2011 3:57 PM

the smith westerns tweetgate is a legit thing to criticize.

just accept it, defenders of this band.

Posted by Anonymous | August 19, 2011 4:00 PM

who said anything about saving lives? I think you're a little late on that

Posted by Anonymous | August 19, 2011 4:01 PM

fuck the Smith Westerns and fuck their management team

You blew it. stop trying to change the subject

Posted by Anonymous | August 19, 2011 4:16 PM

some people are getting really worried one of their cash cows is going to dry up

Posted by Anonymous | August 19, 2011 5:56 PM

no dude, the north shore is nothing like the hamptons. nobody summers in chicago, unless they have to

Posted by Anonymous | August 19, 2011 9:19 PM

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