Save Our Scene

Fischer Hall 10/31/09
November 2, 2009, 12:44 pm
Filed under: Show Review | Tags: , , , , , ,

For Halloween this year, I decided to drive out Frankenmuth, MI for an event called Hallowfest. It was a night of music and ridiculous costumes and one of the most fun shows I’ve been to in a very long time. The crowd was much more in the Halloween spirit than those at the previous night’s show. But let’s talk music.

First up was a band called Take The City ( They played pretty standard pop music led by keyboards and harmonizing vocals. It reminded me a lot of Beneath the Medicine Tree-era Copeland. I felt like the music was really uninspired though. The artists didn’t seem too terribly invested in what they were singing about and it sounded too much like things I had heard before. I just felt sort of bored the whole set.

Next was the return of Koji ( It was a privilege to be able to see him play two nights in a row, though his set tonight was not as good as the previous night. Much of the crowd was at the back of the venue talking and enjoying the festivities while a small handful of people were up front listening intently. Koji played just as well, but he wasn’t as comfortable with the audience and did a lot less talking, which is a big part of the set for an artist like him, especially with the message he tries to spread. Still a solid set however.

Finding Clyde ( came on stage next dressed as Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band. They started off with trouble as the guitarist couldn’t get his pedals working properly. His set up was very impressive; he had a lot on his pedal board, so I was disappointed that this wouldn’t be their typical set. The band opened with a cover of the classic Beatles song, which was a lot of fun, but I was pretty unimpressed from there. They played soft alternative rock that I just found really boring and again not very original. It put a bit of a damper on the show in my opinion, but the band looked like they were having fun all the same.

La Dispute ( took the stage next still dressed in their Star Wars costumes from the night before. I have never seen the band play on a stage before, so this performance was sure to be interesting. They opened again with their version of the Imperial March and started into their set with New Storms for Old Lovers from their newest album. Right away, the performance was much better than the night before. The band actually had room to play, but Jordan was still close enough to interact with the audience and sing with them as he usually does. The sound was much better than the night before and you could hear all the intricacies of their songs. This band is incredibly impressive and is easily one of the best in Michigan and this set proved that once again.

Finally, hometown heroes Ports of Aidia ( took the stage. They hail from Birch Run, just down the road from Frankenmuth, and brought with them a huge fan base. They also were in costume for in honor of the holiday and they get points for having some of the best I saw all weekend. The whole band was dressed as luchadores, including full masks and underwear outside their spandex. The costumes were no distraction from their playing though. They play a fast paced, heavy mix of metal and progressive rock full of spacey tones and weird instrumentation. They launched into their set at a blistering pace and never slowed down. They had the whole crowd singing, moving, and moshing. It was really refreshing to watch another crowd that just got along great. In the pits, if someone fell, there was a handful of people picking them up right away. It was another one of those nights that make you feel good about the scene that we’re in. Ports played a great set once again and never missed a beat. Now that they finally got their full length out, they will be turning a lot of heads in the music scene and deserve a lot of attention.

Lots of fun to be had on Halloween, hope everyone had fun and was safe. I got a few pictures from this show as well. You can once again find them on my Flickr.



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