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Controlling Noise Ain't Easy | A Noise Control Saga of Noisy Neighbours

Updated on May 8, 2009


Recently we were lucky enough to have a band of what I have affectionately called 'emo teens' move in next door. Emo teens is the name I gave them on first sight. In hindsight it might have been a better idea to moniker them 'spawn of satan' and kill them with fire*, but hindsight is always 20/20, isn't it?

Anyhow, shortly after their arrival, the emo teens decided to hold rousing live gigs complete with drums, guitars, a powerful amp and a 'lead singer' not unafraid to howl gutturally into any microphone near his grasp. Suffice to say, the premises they inhabit are not licensed for live gigs, nor should they have been let to anyone without a sagging belly or breasts. Young people are trouble, you know. (I'm 27 now and thoroughly embracing the 'get off ma lawn' philosophy of my forebearers).

Like normal, law abiding citizens we did not flip out when they started with this heinously obnoxious behavior. We did not set their illegally parked vehicles alight, we did not booby trap their front hall with explosives, we did not introduce a plague of bed bugs. No. We called noise control, and that is where the fun began.

You hear conspiracy theory types claim that we're being run by an all powerful government, but I tell you now, that all powerful government can quickly be stymied by an underaged drinker and 30 of his best friends at any moment. Militias shouldn't be stock piling guns, they should be stock piling skinny sullen teens wearing Metallica t-shirts. But I digress.

In spite of a myriad of calls to noise control, the noise continued unabated... which is when I sent this letter to my local representatives at the council.


I am writing to you once more, because once more our neigbours have decided to hold an impromptu gig (live band, amp, screaming metal head emo teens) and once again, noise control has done little to control the noise at all. Oh the irony.

I was informed that an officer had attended the gig, but instead of shutting it down and telling the unruly teenagers keeping our entire neighborhood awake to shut up(including elderly nuns in the convent across the street), he told them that they could keep playing their insane 'music' as long as they finished up within a couple of songs. What madness is this?

They are breaking city bylaws by holding this event without proper permits, judging by the screaming small figures running by the window there is underage drinking aplenty, and oh, yes, they are noisy as all hell. If noise control does not control noise, what does it do?

Is it just to have a number to call to vent my frustrations? Is it perhaps a social experiment, like rats in a cage pressing a button in the hopes of being fed? This rat is quickly becoming irritated at the way the one person who is supposed to remedy the situation has actually made it worse by apparently encouraging them to play their last few songs. And oh how they play. I wish you could be here, city council person, I really wish you could. What fun we would have.

Has the entire world gone mad? Do my taxes really pay for this merry goround of torture by decibel? Who do I need to sleep with to make the noise stop?

I'll sign off with my favorite quote from the screaming loons next door....

"Fucccccccckkkkkkkkk arrooggggggggggsaaaaa!" (Their gentle poetry is like music to my ears.)

Kind regards, much love,


We're now anxiously awaiting the arrival of the police to confiscate their instruments. I'll let you know how that works out.

*I kid, really, I kid.


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    • profile image


      8 years ago

      Damn I thought my luck was bad. I am at the point where I am ready to erect a tent in the woods and live among the animals. At least then I will be among a more evolved species than the animals that I have the privlege of calling neighbors. lol

    • profile image


      9 years ago

      On the outside of the house somewhere, near the power meter, there may be a shut-off switch. Flip it, they probably wont be able to figure out how to turn it back on.

    • profile image


      9 years ago from Central Coast NSW Australia

      Hi Hope

      You could refer to them as Goths. If they are true EMO's he should go into a depressive state that will see him crying for years and no able to host impromtu parties.

      In NSW, the law on noise is midnight. After that, you may call the cops.

      But certainly try Adams trick of talking. After that find out who his land lord is and send him some video and photo's of what is happening to his\her property.

      Good luck with it all or you may have to move. Like to Australia. :)

    • mejane profile image


      9 years ago from Jacksonville Beach

      You get 'em girl!

      Hey, I used to complain when the young lady that use to live above me decided to workout on her portable stepper for an hour during the day. Thump, thump-thump thump thump... When you are trying to work, concentrate on an issue for one of your customers, it can be quite annoying.

      I was just thankful that she didn't step to loud music.

    • Hope Alexander profile imageAUTHOR

      Hope Alexander 

      9 years ago

      Thanks for your comment Adam, I'll make sure to explain to them how screaming at 2.00 am into a mic which is producing enough feedback to echo around the block is obnoxious. Maybe as musicians, they are unaware of the basic mechanics of sound and assume that nobody else anywhere around them wants to sleep - including the nuns in the convent who probably rock out all night long most nights. Nuns are hardcore.

      Oh, and we didn't call the police, noise control called them after visiting them three times, talking them and handing out a final written warning. Which they ignored.

      You might be a nice, reasonable and considerate musician, but that doesn't mean that everyone else is.

    • profile image

      Adam B 

      9 years ago

      Alright...I am going to write this in the point of view of your neighbors. The kids just want to play something they love and feel is esential in thier life. They don't want to cause you problems and they don't want to have the police called and they don't want to be hated.

      Now, I undersand you plight to get them out and stop thier music that you consider noise. Odds are, it probably is Noise and does indeed suck.

      The best way to deal with these types of people (Musicians, I happen to be one) is to go at it with a reasonable approach. How about you go over there when they are not playing and talk to them about your issues. If you do it in a non-confrentational way and explain how the loud decibels interferres with your living experience and want to work with them on an alternative, you just may break through to them. it always helps if you tell them they are good and actually enjoy some of thier songs you hear while sitting in your living room.

      There are companies who sell soundproofing foam which could easily be put up to buffer the sound. It isn't expensive and you can get a boat load off of craigslist for real cheap.

      If you come to an agreement with them to allow them to play without calling the police if they turn down and do something about creating a buffer of soundproofing, things will turn out for the better. And hey, if they take your advise, feel free to also suggest some music lessons...hahaha.

      Lastly, you're 27, not you really want to be that guy who calls the police and complains about "all that racket from these kids?" I hope not.


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