I don’t Halloween. I Hallowmas. What is Hallowmas? Just the Best Party. (Ba dum tss.)
Okay but for real. Hallowmas is the yearly celebration of the Great Pumpkin, and the greatest annual show put on by the World/Inferno Friendship Society out of Brooklyn. The past two years the show has been at the Warsaw (actually it’s been longer than that, but this is only my second time).
Maybe it’s because your first experience is always gonna be the best one, but this year’s party wasn’t quite as amazing and perfect as my first Hallowmas in 2015. Don’t get me wrong, Inferno is by far one of my favorite live acts to see, and Hallowmas is their greatest show of the year. So in effect, it’s one of the best shows I’ve ever seen, and it’s always magical in some capacity. But my first show is on a bit of a pedestal I guess. Or maybe I was just viewing it as best I could through the eyes of my friends I dragged with me who weren’t familiar with the band and just thought that maybe their introduction could have been a bit better.
Or maybe it was just because I skipped the Hallowmas pre-party this year, therefore missing out on meeting a slew of new people to party with at the show. The crowd is always important, and a pre-party probably would have done me some good. That’s my bad.
Of course it’s Halloween, so you can’t skimp out on a costume. You have to honor the Great Pumpkin. So me and a few friends went as characters from the Nightmare Before Christmas.
Danielle, merch girl and costume designer extraordinaire, made our masks.
I’m accustomed to opening Inferno shows with a chant of “Tonight we’re gonna fuck shit up!” We have more chants we use than just that one, but that’s what I was expecting. This time the entire crowd started the show chanting “We know! We know! We know!” Of course I went with it. But then they didn’t open with “Tattoos Fade” like they normally do. Instead the first song was “One for the Witches.”
The first song was a little solemn, as Danielle and another Infernite Siffert stood on top of the crowd with RIP signs for Infernites lost. One was for late musician Erik Petersen from Mischief Brew.
The whole first set was a little slow. It wasn’t bad, but it wasn’t as dancey overall as it normally is. It’s Hallowmas! I wanna dance and mosh!
Of course it got a lot crazier after they took a short break in the middle of the show. When they came back out they finally played “Tattoos Fade” and then everything was all dancing. And there is absolutely nothing better than dancing in an Inferno pit.
Sandra’s the bassist and I adore her.
Oh Jack Terricloth.
Oh yeah, if you’re not familiar with Inferno, they have a lot of members and instruments. The best.
All hail the Great Pumpkin. Great face, Linds.
So much stagediving and crowdsurfing, and there was a super intense circle pit at one point that took up about half the venue. And it’s a pretty big venue. Naturally I was in there having a blast.
I love the clapping on the floor thing.
And of course there were the couples dances. I grabbed my friends Blake and Anna who I’d dragged with me and forced them to waltz and tango with me throughout the night. Then I danced with a random dude for “Heart Attack ’64,” because of course I did.
“Pumpkin Time” is basically the epitome of Hallowmas.
Fake blood did exist this year, but no one was running around dumping it on anyone. Danielle said she didn’t want to be predictable, so she was doing without it for once.
The glitter and confetti bombs seemed a little lacking as well this year as compared to last. I remember being so covered in confetti that it was painful almost, and I had to shower as soon as I got back to my friend’s apartment that night. This year, not so much. It was there, don’t get me wrong. It would not be Hallowmas without glitter and confetti I’m sure. But I mean, I guess I’m glad it was a toned down just a bit.
Everyone seemed to be really excited that they played “All the World is a Stage (Dive).”
Then of course there were the theatrics supplied by the band. There was a giant spider-pumpkin-thing that looked AMAZING. They put a lot of work into Hallowmas and it’s apparent.
And there was this thing.
There were also pumpkins that spelled out words at a few different points.
What does that even say? But then there was also this one.
Before leaving the venue at the end of the night, I talked to Team Butt from the California summer tour briefly, but it wasn’t the same in such a huge setting. Now we’re surrounded by Infernites, while the summer tour was much more small scale and Team Butt was all we had.
I love Inferno shows so much. And Hallowmas takes the cake every time. So good. If you ever get a chance to catch the World/Inferno Friendship Society live, GO. I beg of you. You won’t understand until you experience it for yourself, I promise. And if you catch them somewhere other than Hallowmas, imagine that times about ten. It’s worth it.
Only 364 days until next Halloween!
Photos pretty much all taken by Doug Kavendek