The year was 2000, we were going to do a show at the Roskilde festival in Denmark – and we had huge expectations. ‘Modern Day City Symphony’ had dropped in April that same year and we had been building a buzz on the scene since 96 really – and now we were ready to hit the big stages!
The crowd was ready too! There were a lot of people in the tent that night, and although there were other hiphop acts from Sweden and the US – I think Petter and I know MC Serch from 3rd Bass were there – I felt like most people were there to see us that night. If that’s true or not is of course hard to tell, but that was our honest feeling.
Anyway, there were a lot of delays on stage that night and since we were playing last we were getting a bit worried when everything was getting pushed further and further back. It’s classic that things get delayed on a hiphop night, and back then was nothing different. A Danish group I don’t want to remember the name of had problems with their dat player (!), and instead of letting them pay for their incompetence with their own stage time we – as the last act – were getting punished. Then Mc Serch had soooo many things to say to the crowd and the clock was ticking… and ticking…
Finally it was our friends Timbuk’s and Spotrunners’ turn to go on stage – and after them we were supposed to play. Most of the people had left because the hour was mad late. And then the stage manager dropped the bomb on us: we wouldn’t be allowed to do our set because they had a curfew and the police were very strict.
We lost it! Especially me and Embee who came this close to starting a fight with the stage manager (this was before we had Schumi as a tour manager to handle these kind of situations for us) – and we are definitely not the fighting kind! Apart from feeling like the whole crowd had been there to see us we had also been camping in the camping area of the festival for three days in mud and rain and shit and cold just to do this show! So we were absolutely furious…
Then Timbuk heard about it and brought us on stage towards the end of his set to let us do two or three songs. That’s when I got a spray can from someone in the crowd and wrote our opinion about the festival’s treatment of us on the front drop on stage (see pic below). So the guards rushed on stage and dragged me off, but I got back somehow and we at least did ‘Long Arm of the Law’ as I recall.
After that we left the whole circus mad as hell. This was the same year when people died at the big stage at the Pearl Jam show. So we vowed to never come back to this awful festival (note that I had been coming to Roskilde ever since 93 and I loved it), but I was back again in 2002. And since then I’ve been there every year. It’s a hate love kind of thing.
Martin Ringstrand took the photo: