No photos were allowed and expectations were sky-high among the roughly 55,000 people who turned out for Oslo’s biggest outdoor show ever that was highlighted by the rapper Eminem. He received an enthusiastic reception from the crowd, but critics claim he merely delivered old hits to keep them satisfied while chaos ensued when they all tried to leave the concert site at a newly refurbished sports venue.
The reviews were also mixed regarding crowd control and conditions in general at the concert location called Voldsløkka. It’s in an urban area on the near north side of Oslo, surrounded by residential areas. Neighbours complained about noise and traffic jams, telling state broadcaster NRK that they also objected to loud sound checks before the show and noise from the night-time rigging of the stage and concert infrastructure.
Peer Osmundsvaag of Atomic Soul, the firm that arranged the concert, responded that the company had “never done so much” to try to meet neighbours’ demands. Police in Oslo also claimed they thought those behind the concert did a good job organizing it despite the complaints.
Osmundsvaag conceded that the sound quality of the show wasn’t the best: “It’s a large area and when we’re outdoors we also have to keep within the rules (for volume).” He was also puzzled by poor mobile phone converage that brought complaints from the public, but said that was beyond Atomic Soul’s control.
NRK reported that some frustrated fans tried to tear down a fence when they got caught in huge crowds trying to leave the concert from just two exit areas. Others complained about lots of garbage left behind by the crowd.
Eminem’s tour moved on to Stockholm on Monday. He’ll also play at the Roskilde festival in Denmark on Wednesday before holding five other concerts around Europe this summer.