Despite some poor audio and lighting choices that made for a subpar show, Social Distortion got the crowd going. We were hoping for some harder hitting set choices, rather than the "frat boy" punk we were served up, but thanks to Groupon and half price tickets, there was a capacity crowd at The Congress, and the energy was palpable.
We're hoping tonight that the lighting is fixed and no longer blasts the center of the floor audience with a blinding white spotlight for long periods of time. That kind of harsh light is annoying in short pans and completely inhumane for the bulk of a show. The guy next to me had his sunglasses on the whole night, and I'm seriously considering doing the same.
You'd think they'd get a clue when a wide swath down the whole center of the audience has their hands over their eyes and can't even see the show for being blinded. Miserable! The audio was poorly mixed and left a lot to be desired as well. We'll be back for more the next 3 nights, so hopefully Riot Fest can pull it together with the technical difficulties and do the remaining bands justice.
Otherwise, we may just head straight over to the alternate venues like Bottom Lounge, Cobra Lounge, Double Door & AAA. They get it right with the sound, and the light shows, if not spectacular, are at least aimed at the bands and not the crowd, so you can see and hear who you came for.