04 October 2008

Detour Festival in Downtown Los Angeles

Each year, for three years, AlSto and i have made it downtown to the LA Weekly-sponsored Detour Festival. This year, despite the lack of any majour acts we wanted to see, i ran in to some friends i haven't seen in a while, met some new people, and saw some bands that were unexpectedly good.

As we walked from our car, we passed by the longest line of valet parking attendants i've ever seen, outside a restaurant. Outside the main gate, people were rushing around all over for ATMs because you couldn't use anything but cash to buy tickets. This little fact was buried in the FAQs section of the Detour Myspace page, but was not stated anywhere on the actual website. What was worse was that you couldn't use any credit cards or cash to buy food or drink...you had to take the extra step to purchase an EVENT CARD:

"No more hassling with food tickets… go cashless! It’s the "Event Card!" Similar to an ATM/Debit card, fans can buy dollar amounts on the card for the purchase of food, beverage, and Official Merchandise at the event. All unused money left on the card will be refunded when you leave… it’s that easy.To improve efficiency, Event Cards will be available each at locations throughout the venue. Save yourself some time inside and get an Event Card while you are waiting for the gates to open. The main refund booth will be directly inside the front gate. If you have any questions on The Event Card system, feel free contact us at eventcards@yahoo.com."
Strangely enough, their website had no further information about this new system. Luckily, at the end of the night, you could get your money refunded if you didn't use all the cash. i wonder if some people went hungry/thirsty/merchless cos they didn't want to wait in line to buy/recharge their event card. Wonder if Bill Silva or Goldenvoice will be adopting it soon....? NOT.

Soju took over the beer gardens and that was a big disappointment ...although we did manage to find Dewars's 12-year on the rocks for $5. Meh.

Oh yeah, and there was music. Datarock rocked it. Hercules & Love Affair were interesting, and Gogol Bordello really put on a great live show. Two of the highlights for me were Para One and Surkin, who were in the dance/DJ area. Surkin's final hour or so was filled with old-school rave gems from 808 State, Prodigy, etc. and as i was dancing my ass off, i felt like such a granny. Fantastic!
And a note about ADA compliance:
In the past, they had scheduled the dance area in a church down the street (which had the worst acoustics for amplified electronic music) the first year, and a pavilion area off to the side of the main strip (which is actually Main Street), but this year, the music was up a flight of stairs to a main building of City Hall.
Not very physical disability-friendly or wheelchair-compliant, is it?

It sounded pretty good, tho, and if you looked up, there were engraved quotes from Abraham Lincoln displayed across the face of the building above the stage where the DJs stood. Imagine a bunch of people dancing in here:

Both photos taken by Floyd B. Bariscale.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

i wish my city hall was so dancey. at least i got an absentee ballot. obama's email said maine voters can vote early but man at desk repeated to me, "you can get an absentee ballot."

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