i saw the asuza plane one time. it's not surprising that his hearing was affected. i forgot to bring ear plugs myself and ended up stuffing toilet paper in my ears and standing right down the back. he was up there on stage right in front of the amps. i remember posting about it on a mailing list and, saying that it was just so deafeningly loud that it was hard to enjoy. i recall getting various responses from people saying how they love extreme loudness, and a response from the man himself to the effect of "thanks a lot for your review" - which i took as sarcasm. i have mixed feelings about loud shows; for instance, the last time i saw mbv was amazing, but helped by the fact that i had good ear plugs in. for that matter, i didn't think much of the azusa plane for all their hype. was sad for the guy when he died all the same.