Lately, the widespread use of cameraphones at rock shows has become a hot-button issue in certain circles, albeit an extremely minor one. And like her peers in Savages, Yeah Yeah Yeahs, and a bunch of other bands, Neko Case is apparently not cool with you filming her on your iPhone for the entire duration of the show. And at a show in Cincinnati two nights ago, she expressed that sentiment so much, and so harshly, that she apparently managed to turn an entire crowd against her, according to certain reports.
According to CityBeat, Case spent much of an awkward, uncomfortable show demanding and re-demanding that phones be put away, cutting songs short, and engaging individual audience members in heated arguments. Early on in the show, she told the crowd that the flashes from phones were bothering her and asked them to keep the phones away. Later, she repeated the request: “Just put away the cameras. It isn’t going to kill you, but it might kill me.” And apparently, this happened so much that people heckled Case, flipped her off, and stormed out of the show.
The article’s comments section is full of heated discussion and accounts from other people at the show, most of whom echo the sentiment that Case seemed out of it and that she was the one who turned the show uncomfortable. If you’ve ever been at a show where performer and audience seem to be at odds with each other, you know how squirmy it can get, how shitty it can feel when the person onstage doesn’t seem to notice that most of the people in the crowd are right there with her. But this is the first time I’ve heard of the phone issue turning a show toxic.