The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

The Daily Campus

The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

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Morgan Shiver, Contributor • June 20, 2024
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Dallas Music Festival disappoints

I usually looked forward to the bittersweet smell of patchouli and cigarettes, the dirty floors littered with flyers and the loud reverb from the speakers at the Deep Ellum live venues, but this time it was different. This year’s Dallas Music Festival was a departure from the normal festivities we local music lovers are accustomed to. To put it bluntly, it was lame, really lame.

With the exception of a few bands out of a great many, the festival was a flop. Allow me to explain in the order of the good, bad and the ever so ugly.

Friday and Saturday were the only two nights out of the four worth attending. Bands like Fallen From the Nest and Radiant gave stellar performances and drew in large crowds to the Gypsy Tea Room. On the other side of Deep Ellum, heavy metal bands were surprisingly well received at Curtain Club and Liquid Lounge.

MTV’s Battle for Ozzfest winners, A Dozen Furies, headlined an in-your-face performance at Curtain Club that had people standing on stools just to get a glimpse of the show. Autumn Silence, another metal band, continued with the energy that A Dozen Furies left behind.

On Saturday, the band Minority played to a not so minor crowd at Liquid Lounge. These guys may be young (hence the name), but they know how to rock.

Lesser known bands like The Affected and Sheerfunk were the rare jewels of the festival, almost making up for lack of talent elsewhere. The Affected played an eclectic set at Gypsy Tea Room, resembling a sound similar to Radiohead.

Unfortunately, this is where the good ends, and the ugly part begins. For starters, apparently the festival should have been called Metal Mania 2005 because everywhere I turned there were sounds of obnoxious growling and ear piercing guitar riffs emanating from the venues throughout Deep Ellum.

Granted, A Dozen Furies and Autumn Silence were worthwhile heavy rock bands, but there was just too much metal. After a time, I felt as if my head was going to implode through lack of chord progressions and melody.

Second, the other two days of the festival, Thursday and Sunday, were a waste of time. Not very many people showed up on either days, and the acts that played were mediocre at best.

Third, some of the more promising bands ended up being a greater let down. One band in particular, God’s Joke, was exactly that — a mean, cruel joke. The band’s front-woman had all the looks and presence of a rock star, right down to the corset and bright red boots, but the band had no substance. With every screech of her voice, my head pounded.

Finally, the breaking point in whole charade was when Drowning Pool, a band that embodies all things unholy as far as creativity and musicianship are concerned, actually sold out the Gypsy Tea Room venue Saturday night. I was flabbergasted and discombobulated by the idea that great local bands like Sheerfunk and Minority were undermined by a band who writes trite and predictable lyrics with cliché rock rhythms. It was down right shameful.

So I left the Dallas Music Fest pondering where it all went wrong and how my ears will recover from the beating they received for those four days. I guess the one saving factor is that it only happens once a year, and hopefully the people that book the “talent” will learn from their mistakes. Either that or next year I will be feeling the wrath of God’s Joke once again. Not funny.

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