Midnight Mass II
Astro Lizard Records and Freak Style Booking put on an all-day garage/punk/surf rock festival on Saturday Dec. 10 at a hole-in-the-wall warehouse in Long Beach called The Packard. The lineup was packed with highly recognized bands in the OC/LA music scene featuring The Garden, The Spits, The Buttertones, Audacity, Feels, Peach Kelli Pop, Cumstain, The Memories, Prettiest Eyes, Saccharine Trust, WALTER, Pity Party, High Curbs, Terry Malts, High Curbs, Beach Bums, The Red Pears, Clit Kat, Nectarines, and DJ Jim Smith. It drew in a crowd of approximately 1,300 people and was undoubtedly a success seeing how it sold out, just as expected. The Packard was filled with degenerate weirdos of all ages, from junior high kids to people old enough to be grandparents. Just goes to show you’re never too young or old for good ol’ rock ‘n’ roll.
“Midnight Mass 2 delivered the goods. We've always had faith in the local promoters and the team that organized and managed the event, and they deserve the credit for executing an incredibly fun show,” says Buttertones' bassist Sean Redman. “All in all, I didn't witness a single person pissed off or upset. Even the guy blacked out on the ground by the back gate was stoked. Midnight Mass deserves to be a permanent annual fixture on the Long Beach music calendar.”
The entity that is Midnight Mass would not be possible without the efforts of Andrew “Droozie” Lane, Brent Lindemeyer, and Jarrett Killen. They provided a space for musicians to perform and for people to come hear music they love in a city in that has lacked those elements. The scene is growing at a rapid pace and is making its impression on Long Beach after just one whole year.
“We are by artists and for artists, and will not stop continuing to build a platform that our community and peers can thrive on,” Lane says.
There were nothing but smiles, PBRs, and non-stop mosh pits during Midnight Mass. It was as wild as anyone would it expect it to be with such a diverse crowd all there for the same reason – to hear some damn good music. People and their shoes were tossed in the air, empty PBR cases were sent flying across the crowd, there was a guy in a gorilla suit…Even Tyler the Creator made a special appearance in the crowd during The Garden's set and left everyone hollering and pulling out their phones. With the lineup this year, it was inevitable that it would sell out considering how successful the first Midnight Mass show was.
“It's hard to enjoy something when you're so close to it. Now that it's over, I couldn't be more pleased with the success of Midnight Mass 2,” Killen tells the Weekly.
“In times as dark as these, Midnight Mass was a much needed reprieve. Long live DIY and long live the LBC,” WALTER says.
The Packard was a good fit for the event and was organized despite it being sold out. One noteworthy feature of the venue was the all gender bathroom, which was so progressive that it left many people wondering 'am I in the right bathroom?' The bathroom wasn't the only thing interesting about The Packard. Inside was decorated accordingly to the name Midnight Mass, but with a few things you may not expect to see when you go to worship on Christmas. Enormous chandeliers lit up the space, creating a seemingly holy atmosphere. In order to parallel the divine atmosphere, wreaths were hung up around the Midnight Mass banners with skeleton masks right beside them. There were also naked Barbie dolls hung up with caution tape wrapped around them. Merry Christmas!
The outside stage was surrounded by striking murals of Basquiat, Diego Rivera, and Frida Kahlo. The featured tents were filled with pins, patches, art, and merch from DIY independent LB record label Porch Party Records, Fullerton’s very own Black Hole Records, and local LB artist, Sam Houston. Pabst Blue Ribbon should've sponsored the event considering that's what everyone was drinking. Who could pass up a $4 beer?
There's no question of whether next year's Midnight Mass will have to be held in bigger venue with its vast increase in attendance. Everyone who came out had a great time and was hyped on its ambiance. It seems as though Lindemeyer's hopes of the event growing have become a reality.
“We couldn't be happier with the outcome of the show. The music was amazing. The vibe was great and hopefully, the show has helped to inspire other artists, promoters, and music lovers to keep the flame alive for music, art, community, and togetherness for many years to come in our fair city of Long Beach.”
Yvonne Villasenor is often in a sleep deprived daze daydreaming about ’90s heartthrobs, dogs, upcoming album releases, and what she’s going to eat for dinner. When she snaps back to reality, she writes about OC’s latest music and artists.