FAIL: Kings Of Leon, Pigeons, Bush

Photo illustrations by John Seaborn Gray
Kings of Leon Respond Poorly to Mother Nature's Criticism: Last weekend, bro-rock champions Kings of Leon were three songs into a set when a pigeon in the rafters of St. Louis' Verizon Wireless Amphitheater made its opinion known by taking a dump directly into the mouth of bassist Jared Followill.

Lots of people have been figuratively shitting on the Kings over the last couple of years, but to have it happen literally seems to be where the Followill boys draw the line. Without a word, the Kings finished a song and left the stage. A few minutes later, someone came out and announced that the show was over, citing concerns for the band's safety. Not long after that, drummer Nathan tweeted this:

"So sorry St. Louis. We had to bail, pigeons shitting in jareds mouth. Too unsanitary to continue. Don't take it out on Jared, it's the fucking venues fault. You may enjoy being shit on but we don't. Sorry for all who traveled many miles."

Their press release cited the band's decision to go onstage at all as surprising, considering they saw firsthand how badly opening bands The Postelles and The Still had been splattered. Anonymous assholes on the Internet were, as always, highly critical and derisive, one NME commenter named Rgusto saying, "What the fuck happened to real rock stars? The fuggin' Sex Pistols woulda played extra long in these conditions just because!"

Yes, Rgusto, but keep in mind, all the Sex Pistols really had going for them was the spectacle. Their music was serviceable but generic punk rock; people didn't go to their concerts to hear it, they went to see Johnny Rotten throw darts at Paul Cook while Sid Vicious bled all over his swastika T-shirt from a self-inflicted beer bottle wound.

Now, we're not saying the Kings of Leon are any better than the Sex Pistols, but their focus is, and always has been, on the music rather than on how big of a mess they can make during their sets. In other words, they're about as punk rock as James Taylor. Expecting them to embrace the feces GG Allin-style isn't really fair.

In the end, we really can't blame the Kings of Leon for quitting early; we know we certainly wouldn't be content to write our articles under a torrent of bird shit, and we see no reason for the Kings to put up with it, even if they are rock stars. Representatives at the Verizon Wireless Aphitheater warned the band before the show that the pigeon infestation had become a concern, despite the venue's best efforts to solve the problem.

"Best efforts?" Dude. Just fuckin' shoot 'em. We've got cousins who could solve the problem in a weekend. Shoot 'em, then cook 'em up in some of that horrible, gritty diarrhea you Midwesterners like to pretend is barbecue.

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