Okay, here it is: the last vestiges of 2011. I hope you’ve enjoyed our run down of the year Spin Magazine called the Great Big No. Here’s to a better 2012!
Top Five Honolulu Shows I Attended
5. Ramblin’ for Raegan: This show was amazing. While we didn’t cover it here at HEP, L did at her own blog. The event was for the charity of Raegan, a five year old girl who tragically lost her father a month prior. Narwhal rocked the house and it was the first time we saw Discord & Rye doing their sexy thing. Ong King is a great space for a show and the art that was up was an excellent time filler between bands.
4. At Sea Returns: At Sea, a post-rock band that had been on hiatus for four years, returned in a big way in July. Supported by the equally awesome “space rock” band Clones of the Queen, they packed thirtyninehotel fuller than any show I’d seen before or have seen since. This was certainly a special performance that I’d have been loathe to miss.
3. Young Fangs Anna’s Show: This show was actually a surprise. We hadn’t seen Narwhal for almost a month and went to hit up their first show back. That show happened to also be the final one in a mini-tour for the Alaskan Indie band Young Fangs. Add Siblings and campfire to the bill and you have yourself an excellent evening.
2. Black Square CD Release Party: If you’ve been keeping up with these lists, then you’d know that I listed Black Square as the fourth best band I heard this year. This show was where that all began. The epic four hour show included sets by Upstanding Youth, Raised By Wolves, Narwhal, and, of course, the China Town powerhouses. It had everything you want in a release party: crazy performances, merch of every variety, dancing, and alcohol. Much alcohol. I think my body was running on beer alone since I sweated all the water out in the mosh pit that opened up.
1. Halloween Party at White Tiger Lounge/Orphanage/Dollhouse: Before October 30, 2011, I thought I knew what a house show was. On that night, however, everything I had ever attended before began to look like Uncle Fred with a guitar at the family reunion. Siblings and Narwhal turned a quaint living room into a battleground full of screaming, jumping, moshing characters in various stages of costume. The brightest moment for me was actually captured on tape by Travis. “Tell Me” is, bar none, my favorite song to hear live. We did it harder and crazier than we ever will again. Having this much fun should be illegal.
Well, that’s it folks. Thank you for a wonderful 2011. Let’s all hope the world doesn’t end before we can do more of these lists next year!
Posted in Uncategorized
Tagged Anna Banana's, At Sea, bar, beer, Black Square, Campfire, charity, Chi-To, Clones of the Queen, Coral Stabz, Discord & Rye, Dollhouse, gnarwhal, Hallowbaloo, Honolulu, kaleidoscope, live, local music, music, Narwhal, nightlife, Orphanage, Raised By Wolves, show, Siblings, thirtyninehotel, Upstanding Youth, Young Fangs
Okay, okay, so it’s not Halloween anymore, but it was a crazy weekend for us here at HEP. Hope you all had fun with your costumes and candy.
On Saturday night, we took the plunge into Hallowbaloo, the three-day Honolulu music festival. In short, it was barely controlled insanity. Three or four blocks of Chi-To were gated off, numerous stages erected, several food trucks parked, and thousands of costumed partiers were beer’d. The costumes ranged from several hula lamps and Hunter S. Thompsons to two Deviled Eggs (literally two fried eggs made of cardboard worn by horned red-people). Sadly, us HEPsters were a little late to enjoy any of the live entertainment (including a reportedly amazing performance from Cherry Blossom Cabaret), but we did manage to scoot into 39Hotel for some PBR’s and, eventually, spill into The Venue for a show by Black Square and Kings of Spade! Overall, Hallowbaloo was pretty fun, though the crowd was more of a crush than a background and the lines were quite long for everything (we didn’t even get into Bar35 due to the thirty minute to one hour wait).
After a few hangover remedies, we were back in Honolulu Sunday night for a show and party at Orphanage. This old mansion (formally known as the Dollhouse) is an amazing treasure hidden in the northern hills of Honolulu and occupied by a 90’s sitcom worth of characters. The venue for the night was actually the living room (or “White Tiger Lounge” as they call it) which we managed to pack forty or so screaming, costumed people into. Coral Stabz started out the night in celebration of their new album release (stealin’ pakalolo), though we were late due to the horrendous H1 traffic and missed what I was told was an epic performance. Haven’t had a chance to listen to the tape yet, but I’m sure it’s amazing as well.
We did arrive in time to rock out to Siblings, who were all dressed up as bicycle missionaries from the Church of Siblings of Radder-Day Saints. The mosh basically spilled into the band at this point and, more than once, Joey Green found himself at the back of the crowd, his microphone cord wrapped around his neck like a whip, drawing him back to the front. As the songs raged on and the band/crowd mixture shook the room, the temperature spiked, cooking us until the floor was slick with sweat. It is at this point I will remind you this took place in a living room.
After a booze, water, smoke, and air break (in that order), (G)Narwhal fired up their set. This was now three hours into the drinking and over an hour into the concert and where there was moshing for the punk of Siblings, there is pure insanity for Narwhal. People are attempting to crowd surf, only to smash their heads into the ceiling and fall onto the couch, wrapped up like a mummy in the overhead decorations. Travis of Coral Stabz has covered himself in fake blood and is using it to zombify everyone around him. Someone has taken Adam’s extra drumstick and is smashing additional cymbals to his beat. Not one, not two, not three, but four “last songs” are played. The actual last “last song,” my personal favorite “Tell Me,” is sung mostly by the crowd as Erica’s microphone cord has been disconnected by several feet and she is frantically chasing the end around, ensnaring it just in time to belt the chorus and then lose it again. This is the best show of their’s that I have ever seen.
Sadly, we had to leave shortly after this. We did score a few amazing cupcakes, a copy of the new Coral Stabz tape, and many promises that Adam would get us our fancy new GNARWHAL pins. If the Facebook photos are any evidence, the party lost no steam without us. Thanks for a great night, you crazy, costumed party animals.
P.S.: It appears L has grown impatient with this long post and already posted about our November adventure in NaNoWriMo. I assure you we will not ignore HEP, though we expect to spend more nights in, replacing the crush of the bar with the comfort of a couch while we write. Expect to continue seeing updates about upcoming events, however. We wouldn’t abandon you…
P.P.S: There are a few photos up on the Flickr, but the majority of the weekend was shot using good old fashioned disposable cameras! That said, we should be rolling out those photos next week. For now, content yourself with some amazing shots over at everyday is a wishing well.
Posted in Uncategorized
Tagged bar, Black Square, Chi-To, Coral Stabz, festival, Hallowbaloo, Honolulu, King of Spade, live, music, Narwhal, Oahu, Orphanage, PBR, show, Siblings, The Venue, thirtyninehotel
I love Saturdays. The cool, Hawaiian breeze through my kitchen. The bitter coffee I can sip for hours on my patio with no worries of being late to work. But no great Saturday is born without an equally fantabulous Friday night. Whether you get off work and immediately hit one of your favorite bars where all the cool people go pau hana, or maybe you go home and listen to some relaxing music, you’ve gotta do something to get into the weekend swing.
After a terribly rough week of word search puzzles and arts and crafts, I decided that taking Kendle out for a juicy burger at Big City Diner (our new pad has one just down the street) was just the thing. With expectations only of salty fries and a cold beer, we were pleasantly surprised when we discovered that Friday night is live music night at BCD. Cold ones in hand, we mellowed out to a kind of music we’ve heard very little of since moving to Oahu: traditional Hawaiian.
It’s not surprising, really. Most of the HEPsters’ weekends are spent in ChiTo, grooving out to the vibrant stylings of our favorite local rock bands, or lying low at one of the less crowded beaches on the North Shore. We don’t spend much time at tourist hotspots, not because of some deep seated protest on our parts, but because it’s hard to find time when you both have legit jobs and weekends are a precious time. So, it was a pleasant surprise to find ourselves swaying to the beat of a different drum on Friday night.
What it comes down to is that live music is live music, and live music is fantastic. You forge a connection with the artists whether you want to or not; with ‘Ike Pono you don’t have much of a choice. Humorous, melodious, and hypnotic, the music of this local trio went from barbershop quartet to Hawaiian mariachi band to just plain relaxing over the course of a half hour. During their intermission, the three band members, Stan, Bobby, and Michael, made the rounds and chatted up the patio crowd. It was great to form a connection beyond the music and find out that we even had some things in common! It turns out that Stan used to be in the military, Bobby is a band director at a local school, and Michael is from Oregon. Small world.
Well, it’s time for me to get off the Intertubes and finish the saga that is our move to a new place. Tonight, all will be rewarded with much music and madness at ChiTo’s Hallowbaloo where we’ve been told a bit of Discord & Rye/ Raised by Wolves will be going down at Hank’s. Catch you there!