And the prize for the biggest fuckwit of the year goes to none other than the resident who recently moved into the Melbourne CBD next to iconic live music venue Cherry Bar and is now demanding they turn the volume down to half.
The resident, who moved into the contentious new apartment block built next door to the long-running venue, made his views very clear in a threatening email sent to venue management.
“I am a resident living at the newly established apartment beside the Cherry Bar,” the unnamed resident wrote. “The noise made by your bar is affecting my sleep and work, especially since it lasts beyond mid night. May i suggest u guys to reduce the noise made by at least a half ?”
“There are many working adults and students living in this apartment, so the noise produced by your bar made it very difficult for us to rest at home after a long day of work.”
“I have read about the noise restrictions in the CBD, and will consider reporting to the City of Melbourne or the Victoria Police if this matter is not solved within the next week.”
Melbourne recently saw the introduction of the so-called Agent of Change laws, whereby the makers of new developments, particularly those within 50 metres of a live music venue, are responsible for the cost of soundproofing the surrounding venues.
“This means beloved pubs and clubs that are home to live music in Victoria will not be forced to close due to noise complaints from those in new apartment buildings or new houses next door,” said Planning Minister Matthew Guy when signing the legislation.
The world-first laws were finally passed early last month and were hailed by music industry members as a step in the right direction. Prior to their implementation, the onus of installing expensive soundproofing measures fell on live music venues, who were often at the mercy of local residents and councils.
“It’s unprecedented around the world. In the case of Victoria’s 500 live music venues, if an apartment is built next door, one minute the venue is in compliance [with state noise restriction laws], and the next minute they’re out of compliance through no fault of their own,” said Music Victoria Chairman Patrick Donovan of the laws.
Unfortunately, the new laws are too little too late for Cherry Bar, who instead put the call out to the music community to help raise funds for expensive soundproofing renovations to the AC/DC Lane venue to pre-empt a noise complaint dispute with residents moving into the apartment tower overlooking the venue.
The CBD bar managed to raise a staggering $50,000 in under 24 hours, with co-owner James Young saying it sent “a message to the world that people love and cherish live music and will scrape and fight to protect what they love in the face of rampant soulless residential development.”
Speaking to Tone Deaf from Spain, Young stressed that he has “to be courteous.”
“I do want friendly neighbourly relations, but I just had to check in with a wider group to see if they shared my mortification at the tone and threatening nature of this confronting new city resident who seems remarkably unconnected to real city life and culture.”
“Maybe you guys can laugh at this, but it’s no laughing matter for me or other threatened live music venues because this one person can close us down. Whatever happened to the notion of the “common good”. I weep for our future if we can’t win this battle…”
That message seems to be lost on these new residents however, so to them can we suggest that next time they avoid moving next to a live music venue which is been operating for over a decade.