A crowd of music fans outside Bridgestone Arena appeared more like a mob early Tuesday morning.
Hundreds of people filled the arena plaza, hoping to get a wristband that would allow them on the floor of a New Year's Eve show by Bassnectar.
Bassnectar is the work of Lorin Ashton in the style of freeform electronic music. In his own words, he “combines sound and force with weight” for an experience that “engulfs the senses.”
On Tuesday, crowds were corralled close to the building, but arena staff and metal fencing could barely contain the group waiting for the wristbands.
“We're here for Nectar, man. Lord Nectar,” said Aidan Leonard, a Bassnectar fan from Hendersonville.
He continued, “Everyone just gets so wild when they come to these. It's just so nuts trying to get wristbands to get on the floor, and everyone wants to be on the floor because it's a different world on the floor.”
“Crazy,” Victoria Hickam explained. “I thought I almost got trampled once. I was like about to fall and go down. I was scared.”
Last year's New Year's Eve show by Bassnectar was a sell-out smash.
This year, fans once again packed the plaza for a chance at floor seats to Tuesday night's 360 degree “bass-powered blow-out” that will include a rotating stage. Some arrived as early as 10 p.m. Monday, despite being told to stay away until 8 a.m. Tuesday.
The Bassnectar Web site advised fans that floor seat wristbands would be given on a first-come-first-served basis, but with explicit instructions.
“Do not arrive earlier than 8 a.m.,” the site stated in bold print. “Camping out before this time will not be allowed – there is a hockey game at the venue on December 30 and there will be staff working onsite through the morning until this time.”
Fans didn't want to miss out and ignored the posting.
Leonard and Hickam arrived around 5 a.m., after seeing the crowd gather from a nearby hotel window overlooking the plaza.
While talking to Nashville's News 2, Hickam was pushed by the unsettled crowd.
“Well, they only hand out a certain amount of wristbands, and if you don't get one, then you're not going to… aaahhh!” she screamed.
Crowd control wasn't the only problem outside the arena.
Bassnectar fans left a mess of tents, chairs, and trash from overnight.
The scene became so chaotic, arena staff passed out wristbands nearly two hours ahead of schedule in what appeared to be an effort to clear the crowd.
Seconds later, Bassnectar fans posted happy tweets of wrists covered with Bassnectar bands.
General admission tickets for Tuesday's Bassnectar show are sold out. VIP tickets and upgrade packages are still available. The show begins at 7:30 p.m.