‘Sickomode’ singer sickens fans with fatal concert

Ali Smith, Arts & Leisure Editor

Over the weekend, rapper Travis Scott held his highly anticipated Astroworld Festival, which ended in eight confirmed fatalities and led to over 300 more injuries, according to Yahoo News.

Astroworld pays homage to Houston’s Six Flags AstroWorld, which was permanently closed in October 2005.

This year’s festival was advertised as “The True Dystopia is Here,” by Scott and his team, accompanied by disturbing images of a terrified devil-child.

Many festival-goers described this year’s festival as a “living hell,” as many were left without space to expand their lungs and take a breath, gasping for air as the crowd surged tightly forward toward the stage.

Not only were the music, bass frequencies and images satanic in nature, but this deadly description of fans calling for help as other crowd members struggled for breath and collapsed was something straight out of a nightmare.

Fans chanted “stop the show” and screamed for their lives at the festival, but even as ambulance vehicles were spotted in the crowd and acknowledged by Scott, the performance and agony continued.

Seeing videos posted by fans of Scott acknowledging fans who had fainted and questioning the emergency vehicle pushing its way through the crowd but continuing to sing autotuned ab-libs is absolutely disturbing.

Here, “the show must go on” mentality was no excuse for Scott. People were dying and pleading for him to stop the show, but the chaos persisted for 37 minutes after the Houston Police Department declared the festival a mass casualty event, according to the Houston Chronicle.

One fan who was there, who goes by the name dispncr on TikTok, came to the platform to recount what his experience was at the festival.

“A lot more went into everything that happened than just a crowd surge,” dispncr said.

“Yes the crowd surge played a big part in it, but the stage design was bad, the barricade design was bad. Everybody was packed in between the sound booth and the main stage because the sound booth was so big that if you stood behind it you couldn’t see the show.”

To add to the trauma of the chaotic experience, dispncr said that the medical staff did not have enough medical equipment for overdoses and heart attack victims, for example, nor did they have enough ambulance vehicles to get to the people who needed help in the crowd.

“A lot of the time you had people in the crowd doing medical procedures on other people in the crowd,” said dispncr.

“I can name two specific instances when I had to open up a mosh pit solely to let an ambulance cart come through to get to a body and then another time when I had to open up a mosh pit literally around a corpse and have someone from the crowd perform CPR on them.”

Another fan resorted to climbing on stage to alert a cameraman that someone had died in the crowd, begging him to stop the show and to call for medical help.

This was not the first instance in which Scott encouraged his fans to break into the festival, as fans noted this is an understood dynamic of Astroworld; thousands of people break in for a free show from their favorite rapper.

This year, the most popular video circulating of this security issue is that of fans stampeding a tall fence to gain access to the festival, trampling over one another under their weight and momentum.

According to the AP News this tragic incident was not the first time Scott incited a riot at his show. In 2017, Scott was arrested after inviting fans to rush toward the stage at an Arkansas concert, and he faced similar charges in 2015 after a chaotic Lollapalooza performance.

Scott and his team should be held accountable for not only allowing into the venue, paid or unpaid, but also for negligence. Stage design should have been more thoughtful. More safety protocols should have been put into place, especially considering the physical and brutal nature of Scott’s concerts. Medical and safety personnel should have been aptly trained and equipped to respond to a crisis of this magnitude. Above all, though, Scott himself, and other trusted individuals who stood idly by while fans as young as 10 gasped for their last breath, should take responsibility for not stopping the show the second someone experienced a medical emergency.

Shame on Scott, his team and those who refuse to acknowledge the role he played in eight deaths and hundreds of injuries this weekend alone.