Halloween isn’t just for kids, and neither is Heavy Metal Hallowe’en, an all-ages benefit concert scheduled for Saturday, October 30 at Takhini Arena.
Featuring new and established bands, the show promises to be a treat for everyone. The trick is to come early.
Started by Tundra Punk Chris, Heavy Metal Hallowe’en has become an annual event.
“We’ve been involved every one,” says Meph Hunter, Kung Fu Alien and one of this year’s organizers.
“They’re a lot of fun and they sell out every year. Kids really look forward to it. I’m telling the kids and adults on the website that they have to turn up early. No more of this get-there-whenever, or you’ll be out in the cold.”
This year’s line-up spans well-known bands such as Kung Fu Aliens and Death in Venice as well as younger bands, like Bushwacker and Cervexecution, some of whose members are still in high school.
“Carnal Romance will be debuting at the show,” Hunter explains, reviewing the line-up. “They’re an all-female metal band. The lead guitarist is Big Mama Lele, a known ukelele wizard who just decided to pick up the guitar. That should be an eclectic set.
“Cervexecution is a Whitehorse supergroup, made up of members of bands who couldn’t play because someone will be out of town, but have played every year. They’re doing a death metal set, which I’ve never heard anyone play in Whitehorse.”
Hunter demonstrates, a deep hrrk hrrk, as though coughing up a hairball. “They’re a let-me-clear-my-throat group.”
The bands cover a wide range of the heavier side of the musical spectrum.
Death in Venice is a jamming, surf punk band, while speedcore Kung Fu Aliens is branching out to longer songs, even experimenting with reggae.
Living in Thought performs slower, progressive metal. The bill also includes Atrium Loss, a band that changes its name with every show.
Since this is a Halloween show, Hunter is expecting costumes and general craziness.
“It’s always a costume thing for me,” he says, indicating his black trench coat with his blood red and white painted fingernails. “But it’s great to get other people into it. A couple of times, I’ve had to rein bands in.
“The first year, one of the kids’ groups asked whether it would be OK if at the end of the show, several gallons of blood spew out of speakers. I hated to tell them no, but I had to think of the damage deposit.”
The benefit concert is for A Space, a society that Hunter, a board member, says is dedicated to providing venues for people who need venues.
“Not just musicians, but people with comedy acts, dance, even artists, carvers, anything. We’ll enter a contract with the person and we’ll keep a percentage of the money made, just to keep the place going, and the artist gets the rest,” he explains.
“We’re looking around town to find a place to rent as a permanent structure, and not just offer random places around town as venues. We’re hoping someone at the gig might know of a place that’s available.”
Saturday’s event will also include a silent auction. A possible item for bids: Take an Alien to the Prom.
Heavy Metal Hallowe’en will be an alcohol-free show for all ages, not just for kids.
“It’s funny,” Hunter says, “in this town, people think all-ages means under graduation age. I know people who refuse to come out to all-ages shows, saying, ‘But it’s for kids.’ I say, ‘You haven’t seen how these kids work.'”
Heavy Metal Hallowe’en starts at 6 p.m. October 30 and runs until 11. Come early and don’t get left in the cold.