The Festival Beat: Know Your Lineup
We may go to a new festivals for the rest of our lives and never find anything that feels like Hulaween. Tie-dyed tapestries created the walls of a city that we built in the middle of a swamp. It's strange, but this feels like one of the craziest things we've ever done. The art was larger than life and seemed completely at home among the trees. Our weekend felt like something out of Alice and Wonderland, like we'd all gone mad.
In life, you are confronted with many paths by which your story will be told. Some present themselves with obstacles, and others are avenues to emotional and metaphysical clarity. A journey with Spafford is one of those latter paths. We understood life, love and our purpose on earth within the first 13 minutes of the set, the other 62 was filled with face melting solos, stratosphere bending jams and spooky overtures fit for a festival bearing the spirit of All Hallows’ Eve. Also the jammed the fuck out of “Mad World,” WHO ELSE CAN DO THAT?!
Let us start off by saying this was the best set we’ve seen Keys N Krates play… and we see them every time they’re on the lineup. We love their tracks so much, and simply cannot give up hope that one day they’ll play a set that’s amazing start to finish. This Sunday afternoon, things started out amazing- broken keyboard and all they had the crowd going with banger after banger. But then half-way through they decided to slow it down… a lot… like really slow, and really dark… like depressing. Even the biggest of trap bros were no longer dancing, most were not even swaying along anymore. They lost us for such a long time that we gave up hope and left to get beer before Goldfish’s set.
Man did we call this one! They made our Hulaween 2017 homework list but they far exceeded our expectations. You had one guy hammering away on the drums, so completely into the music that it was contagious. The other was behind the boards and signing- on songs where the vocals were sampled he’d walk to the front of the stage and put on a lip-sync performance for the crowd. We were worn out and sore from 2 long days before but these guys brought us right back to life!
Logistically, this festival was a nightmare. Clearly hippies don't think that road signs are necessary, much less festival staff to point people to an assigned camping space like a normal festival. It took us about an hour to find the rest of our friends.
The experience once we got inside more than made up for this. The sound quality was amazingly balanced for all types of music, and stages were all separated by patches of forest so there was no sound bleed. The sound was only outdone by the visuals. Whether it was the light shows, or the fireworks, or the giant red hearts released into the crowd during the Halloween party, you always had something vying for your attention.
When the wristband came in and didn’t have an option for cashless we chocked it up to this being a smaller festival. What we weren’t prepared for is having to buy tickets and use them as currency all weekend. The only possible logic for this is hoping that people buy too many and the festival gets their money without having to give them food or drink in return… not cool Hula. At least the food options were decent and the craft beer tent featured some awesome local Florida beers.