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Saturday, March 06, 2010

TRIBE 2010 Review (4)

I have been playing with Tribe since inception and must say that this year was the first year I had so many issues and actually felt like I should look into another band.

This year I found I only liked one section for myself, Osage and many friends agreed they found the pickings slim. After such gorgeous, creative costumes in 2009, 2010's offerings were underwhelming. I luckily got into my only section of choice during online registration but have other friends that were on at the same time that had many technical problems and were forced to register for Habotai as it was the only available section when registration re-opened. Tribe I don't mind you pre-registration (I have never gone this route) but doh act like system breakdown and then half the sections sold out when you come back up nah!

Anyway, I went to collect my costume on the Monday before carnival and it was quite smooth, a short line to pay and that was it. I got my costume and immediately could tell the bra was too small. I have always ordered a 36C but this year it was padded and had a push up. When I tried it on it was clear that I was spilling out without even having to jump. I heard many people in Osage and Charmuese with C cups or above had problems with this new padded and push up version. Staff was very good and told me even though they did not have bigger sizes on hand, they would be getting them in that night, so I should return the following day. I went to customer service on Tuesday and was given a normal bra that fit, however it was a BRIGHT orange in comparison to the original burnt orange. I was assured that I would not notice after it was decorated, OK. I received a call Thursday afternoon to collect the bra but I went on Friday morning. Again it was rather easy to get in and out. The bra I collected was the bra I previously tried on so it fit and though it looked fine from the front the back was totally off with the bright orange.

Monday at the lunch stop I choose the 1st BBQ tent. I was given a small clear container with only one piece of meat and some rice. I realized after that friends who went to other BBQ tents received a bigger styrofoam container and got two pieces of meat, rice and another side. Tribe this is the first time I have noticed such variations between different tents (international was different at the 2 tents I tried same thing with BBQ). Tuesday I made an attempt to go to different tents before choosing because of this.

Tuesday due to my early make-up appointment I met with the band at 8am. We CRAWLED all the way to the Savannah. The last time I felt this disgusted by my savanna wait was in Poison. Why did we have to line up behind all these big bands? Had we headed downtown (like we always did prior to last year) there would have been few (if any) big bands for us to follow and we would have been able to enjoy the road, cross A stage (any stage) and head to the Savannah, at which point most of the big bands would have passed us and we might have made lunch at the same 3 pm. It was ridiculous that we spent 7 hours just going to the Savannah, it is not the great stage anymore so the road experience is what is more important.

The only thing that standstill came in handy for was an opportunity to walk the band and see friends. After lunch it was impossible to see people. I usually stop and hang with different groups of friends in the afternoon, I found very few and if I lost them it was almost impossible to locate them without texting. The band is TOOOOOOOO BIG. I understand that the profit is nice for you Tribe but as a paying customer my experience is diminishing.

My last issue was the security. For the most part they did a great job before lunch. By Aripita Avenue. there were gaps in the rope and plenty men jumping in the band. When it got dark I noticed the security rolling up their rope and next thing they trying to wine up behind you. I know carnival now start for them but when I say no I doh want a wine do not grab onto me... While they trying to wine one masquerader got stabbed and another a buss head (and these are just the stories I heard about). Work out an overtime policy or something please.

So Tribe all I ask is that you:-

1. design some hot costumes for next year.
2. decrease the size of the band
3. let's go back downtown or anything that would give us a road experience
4. standardize the food options
5. stop ordering from China or wherever Osage and Charmuese bras came from.
6. Tighten security after dark.

Please and thanks!!!


dcarnivalbaby said...

WOOOOOOOOOOOW!!!!!!! To be honest, I am shocked. I have heard people this year complaining about TRIBE but didn't think anyone would make a complaint on Saucy Blog! I am STILL happy with Island People. After last years complaints from damm near everybody but me an my crew, the only place for them to go was UP and step UP they did!!!!!!

mjsbunny said...

TRIBE really does need to sort out the size of the band, because it is beyond a joke. And a lot of their loyal masqueraders are getting pretty sick of it. Pre-reg needs to either stop entirely (which would be preferable) or severely limited to like two people per committee member or something.

TRIBE have become victims of their own success and I just hope they don't implode! But the way things are going, it looks like that just might happen.

Auntie Nini said...

i agree with most of this review to the point where i wonder if i wrote it in my sleep! i didn't have bra issues (mystery of loulan was on point, plus with these boobs i asked for and got a custom built bra anyway), nor did i have food issues (i never enjoy the whole lunch, but the parts i eat i like), but i agree that it was ridiculous to line up behind 4 big bands and 2 small ones to go savannah when it was obvious that with all these bands uptown, that downtown was CLEAR (and is a far better stage experience, cuz it have SPACE). we coulda go downtown and come back up and STILL cross savannah same time without the 7 hour stand-up on park/charlotte. because obviously if ppl standing and not moving and lashing the bar, what happened will happen which is that ppl got silly drunk and by the time my section (lulu) tried to cross the stage things were pushy and shove-y and crushing and chaotic, security wasn't even TRYING to toss stragglers from other sections so our section could portray, and our music truck ran ahead without us! lulu stage crossing was a truly awful experience for me, to the point that after that disaster i simply went home, because i was not enjoying myself. i will add that THE MAIN BARS ARE TOO TALL! i am 5'3"...i have to tiptoe with my arm stretched to full above my head to give the barman my cup and get it back! since i wasn't drinking alco, i tried to stick to the express bars since their heights were much more reasonable, but to get to an express bar i had to do a bit of a walk there and back.

tribe has become a scene. the nice vibe and nice people we used to get in the band have been replaced by some wajangs whose only aim is to drink til they fall down and DOH KNOW HOW TO PLAY MAS! i too may be looking for another band next year, but since i will never give IP my money since they doh know how to treat ppl, and spice seems to have lost their collective mind, i might be headed to a medium band or an 'older' band.

Empath said...

Wow this is interesting to read, because I was in Macfarlane and we spent HOURS downtown as well. We heard that it was TRIBE who caused the backlog....but now as I am reading this, it is clear that there was a JAM at both locations and Tribe did not go downtowan. The only stage that was clear was Picadilly street! Again I think the main problem is that the size of bands have gotten too big, there are many more small bands, and the length of each band's presentation is just too long now.

mjsbunny said...

The thing with TRIBE is that they always come up trumps with their service. You email the mas camp, you get a reply. Something's not right with your costume? They sort it out. Send feedback after Carnival? Someone reads and responds. And this is why people keep coming back.

BUT the size of the band is starting to outweigh all those good things. I agree with everyone who complained about the wait. It was bloody horrendous. But at least you all could make it to a bar truck. The Individuals were stuck at the front of the band, with NO help whatsoever. We had to rely on random people or friends of friends to go get us drinks, and they were few and far between.

The Ronnie & Caro review mentioned they had people with carts with water going through the band. That is an EXCELLENT idea. A mobile bar would have been the best thing on Tuesday, and it also keeps the rest of the bars clear. Have the mobile bars serving gatorade, fruta, water and cans of beer. So kudos to R&C for their brilliance. And somebody mentioned a sno-cone truck? Feckin' A!!! LOVE IT!!!

C'mon TRIBE. We expect so much better from you. And like Auntie Nini, I will never give IP or Spice my money. But my friends and I are thinking about switching over to Ronnie & Caro. They seem to be on point! I'm taking a break for 2k11, but for 2k12, we'll see...

RWB said...

If Tribe really gave a $hit they would have reduced the band size since 2008! To me they are becoming increasingly more interested in money and less interested in their product and customers.

Imagine I had no room to even do 180 (much less a 360!) in my $4,385 costume! Steups.

What I want to know is at what point does the size of a band become a genuine health and safety issue because I was close to passing out in that pre-savannah craziness, the squeeze between music truck, rope and onlookers on Ariapita was unbearable, and when the security have no choice but to forcefully push past you just to do their job, come on, do you really care about the safety of you customers?

So if I was injured either accidently or purposely on Ariapita on Tues in the middle of that madness, what an absolute nightmare that could be when I fall forward and a stampede of ppl who have no choice but to keep pushing fwd trample over me before they even notice.

I actually think this is such a serious issue that NO BAND should be even allowed to subject the masqueraders to such conditions. I will definitely NOT be in Tribe again if thy carry on like this. $4,385 should buy me safety too.

bella ella ella a said...

wow this review seems eerily close to what I wrote to Tribe with the exception of the costume design complaints!

dougla_1 said...

Well, mjsbunny yuh getting real close to the ROAD BAND (large category) I envision. I got the clue from Harts long, long time, years now to be exact ;) (In the US yuh could patent organizational structures, so I not say nothing, eh, I stretching a bit :) ) But everybody does want everything big, big, BIG: big costume, big tune, big TRUCKS (people still doh realize that Machel was referring to a big bamsee girl and not rel BIG TRUCKS to clog up the fork in roads, lol)...but I tell yuh, small pin does jook hard (or at least try harder :) )

Indeed, large bands have reached a point of diminishing return for their patrons, making the ULTIMATE Carnival ROAD experience more and more elusive. However, where there is a problem, there is a solution(s) Or, yuh could be like Spice and say NUTTIN eh wrong....

Mazy said...

I remember posting reviews similar to these, before Carnival Monday and Tuesday, and getting PUT In MEH PLACE, so I am surprised at all this. The bras, I had a problem with, the costumes themselves lacked creativity, especially with the theme. Forgive me for asking but, where was the silk? The whole issue of registration is another story. I still have to wonder, why do we have TLC cards? The size of the band,... no need to add anything!
And since last year, I've been trying to figure out why Tribe not going downtown no more?
If you think of the length of time the band stayed on Park & Charlotte St, then the time they took for lunch, how much hours are
we, the masqueraders, enjoying on the road for $3925? ( what I paid)

mas.jumbie said...

I think its to Tribe's credit that the only real complaint some ppl could come up wid is the size of the band. I hope that if Tribe do cut numbers that some of these same ppl doh complain bout how they cannot get in. The fact is that Tribe is in high demand because they offer an overall package that the MAJORITY of people feel they cannot REALISTICALLY get elsewhere.

Ask any masquerader who previously played with Tribe and decided to be adventurous and play wid SICEISIS this year.....or have you not seen the SPICEISIS reviews???

shandygirl78 said...

I agree wholeheartedly with all the above posts. I am never one to complain about money. I buy what I want if I like it. With that said $1000 us dollars for a costume to have it destroyed due to the band being overcrowded and at points dangerous on Tuesday is ridiculous!!!I paid more for my costume this year partly with the expectation that the overcrowding issues of the last two years would addressed....Imagine my disiilusionment when I discovered it had infact, gotten worse!!!My costume was destroyed by lunch time. In the pre savannah crunch I literally heard the feathers breaking off at certain points. Every place I tried to move to to not get crushed someone else was there trying to do the same thing. What is the point of having "good Customer service" for Trinidad if the road experience will be horrible? Shouldnt the goal be to have both? The point of coming to carnival is afterall the road? Why does the "customer service" end at Cascadia? There were points where that whole situation became unsafe. I do not know why the police vehicles need to pass thru an already oppressively overcrowded mess of drunk people. Well those that could get the the over crowded drink trucks to get drunk....The band is way too large. In the past i used to forgive them for having OK costumes but the costumes just being OK, the food just being OK, and the road experience being miserable the last couple years has me feeling like TRIBE does not care what they deliver to loyal customers.......

shandygirl78 said...

@mas.Jumbie sorry but what is your point exactly? Is it that because every one else sucks TRIBE should pat themselves on the back for being mediocre? From the reviews I have read and from the people I have spoken with the size of the band is not the only complaint. It is however the most serious issue because at points that mess was unsafe. In addition to being unsafe it was just not fun...TRIBE used to be the gold standard now they joining in with every one else that seem like they just about grubbing for money....

RWB said...

So Tribe is in high demand... and? It's their job to manage that wisely and still deliver a good product and service. (And honestly, Tribe are not offering anything that another band can't REALISTICALLY deliver/duplicate/do better!)

I've been with Tribe from 2005 as well. I dare not total the amount of $$ I've given them. I'm not blind with loyalty though. The size of the band is a major issue that IMO, overshadows any other complaint. The knock-on effects are too numerous to get into. So obviously people will get left out if they cut numbers.But there are always people who cannot get in so I can't see the difference. At least those who are in would have room to breath, room to wine, room to look left and look right!! That's how bad it is atm!

I've hoped for a change for 3 years, so I won't be a mug for a 4th. If Tribe do not come out and say explicitly what their plan is, I just cannot trust that they care. I'll take my money to Thailand or smthn and show dem how to palance!! lol.

Wowww said...

Funny how everyone wants a smaller band, yet no one wants to be the odd man out. Need a Tribe part II!

Tr|n|gYa| said...

I agree with Wowww on this one.
I hope ALL masqueaders realize that when TRIBE makes the move to cut their numbers, there WILL be a public backlash from those very people who cannot get in. And that includes TLC holders. I don't agree with the TRIBE II bit, though.
TRIBE needs to rediscover that element that drove them to create the band in the first place. I feel like they have really lost sight of this. Demand or not, the idea of the Ultimate Experience has become saturated by the potentiality of fiscal profit.

I really hope that they address these issues before the launch for their 2011 presentation!

mas.jumbie said...

My point shandygirl is that while a few people on this blog might complain about size of the band there are many more who are happy with things the way they are.

For every one complaint here I sure there are a thousand ppl who disagree. If ppl felt they were not getting their money worth Tribe would not sell out within hours of opening registartion.

I played with Tribe. I like my experience and the service. If Tribe normally have space for 4000 people and they have 5000 people always trying to get in what they supposed to do??? Cut down from 4000??? And then who getting blank??? People like me??? Hell no.

I am not a die hard Triber but I do call it as it is. I have played with other bands over the years and in my view for now Tribe gives me the best value for my money. It is an experience I can be assured of. If I come across another option I think is worth trying...I will.

At the end of the day is your choice. Please feel free to try another band. You might end up like my friend who I gave my complimentary SPICE-SIS costume to and who cuss me for setting her up. Says she will never play with that band again even if the costume free again.....that says alot

Or who knows maybe you will have the time of your life....

Anonymous said...

All ah allyuh need to hush allyuh mouth...........cuz come August is the same herd ah allyuh go be raving bout "who get thru with registration".......blah....blah......blah!!

That being said...I go see allyuh in 2K11 as usual..LOL

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