Tag Archives: wow hall

Dubstep Duo Candyland Performs at WOW Hall

-Eleni Pappelis

This past Saturday night, I took a trip downtown to the WOW Hall to see the sold-out Eugene debut of Candyland. Not to be confused with the children’s board game, Candyland is the dubstep duo of Josie Martin and Ethan Davis from Santa Barbara, California.

These opposite personalities know how to attract an audience. After winning two consecutive Beatport remix contests with remixes of Make It Bun Dem” by Skrillex and “Rattle” by Bingo Players, Candyland hit more than one million Soundcloud plays.  They began producing their own original songs in April 2012 and recruited help from the Brazilian electro-house producer FTampa, who produced their first original mix “Hypnotic.”


Candyland’s music ranges across almost every genre of electronic music.  In an interview with Oh Hey Doctor, a popular site dedicated to the discovery of new music and featured artists, Candyland described that if their music were to be described in flavors:

Martin said, “People say our music is ‘dirty and filthy,’ no one wants to eat that. I guess Rocky Road? Got some good Chocolate up in there because I’m black, oh wait then the nuts, cause our music gets cray. Then marsh mellows, because Ethan’s white. Man that was the worst answer of all time.”

Davis said, “If we were a flavor, I’d say we were Neapolitan. A little of everything.”

I was very impressed with Candyland’s performance. They always provide a great bass drop. Although Davis will not be touring, Martin will represent Candyland and continue on its tour. Their next stop is Philadelphia, Pennsylvania on March 28, accompanied by artists Gent & Jawns, Sazon Booya, and Phillionaires.

Top image from https://www.facebook.com/CandylandDJs

Cold War Kids Deliver for Sold Out Crowd


– Mike Munoz

Hundreds of soaked students made the trek to the WOW Hall last weekend on what was a very cold and wet evening. Fans huddled around the stage, desperately seeking warmth before the Cold War Kids concert Friday night. But as lead singer Nathan Willett and the rest of the band took the stage, audience members seemed to agree that walking in the rain was a small price to pay for the show.

The Cold War Kids formed several years ago in Long Beach, California, and in 2006 they released their debut album, Robbers and Cowards. The album found mild success due to their hit single, “Hang Me Up to Dry,” which was a three and a half minute hurricane of raw vocals and a bass line you can’t help but dance to. Over the next couple of years, the band toured tirelessly throughout the US, marketing their raw, yet beautiful sound. In 2008, the Cold War Kids released their second album Loyalty to Loyalty, and since then the band has been one of the biggest names in the indie scene.

In the band’s latest recordings, it’s very easy to see just how much the Cold War Kids have evolved over the years. Early last winter, they released the EP, Behave Yourself, which contained four much more polished track that for some reason didn’t find their way onto previous albums. Songs like “Santa Ana Winds” pay homage to their hometown of Southern California, while “Audience” proves that Willett is one of the top vocalists in the genre. Earlier this year, the band released their third full length album, Mine is Yours, which has been finding regular airtime on college radio stations across the country.

As the Cold War Kids took the stage at the sold out Wow Hall, the audience seemed ready to explode in anticipation. The band kept the crowd guessing, by playing a set list that included their heavier, loud songs as well as their slower ballads. Bass player Matt Maust hopped around the stage in his Joan Jett t-shirt as Willett switched back and forth between his guitar and piano. Although the band’s set list covered songs from all of their albums, there was definitely a heavy focus on their newest recordings.

While Cold War Kids insist that they aren’t a bible thumping Christian band, some of their lyrics deal with faith and family issues. A reminder of this was when the band performed one of their earlier singles “We Used to Vacation,” which tells the story of a man struggling to deal with his alcoholism after a couple of stints at rehab. “Two weeks paid vacation / won’t heal the damage done / I need another one,” yells Willet as the crowd cheers for more. The Cold War Kids ended the concert with an encore performance of one of their first hits, “Saint John,” much to the audience’s pleasure.

“Thank you guys it’s been a lot of fun. Thank you for singing along,” said a sweaty and exhausted Willett as the band left the stage. As audience members poured out of the Wow Hall, they were met with the harsh, wet reality of their trek back home. But after watching one of the top indie bands in the nation put on a stellar performance at the peak of their career, the rain didn’t seem so bad.

Ra Ra Riot Electrifies Audience at Wow Hall

– Mike Munoz

As Alexandra Lawn and Rebecca Zeller tune their cello and violin on the small stage at the Wow Hall, it’s hard to tell what kind of performance to expect from the indie rock band Ra Ra Riot. But as the rest of the band bounced on stage to begin their show, it became clear that the audience was going to have a hard time keeping up with these energetic performers.

Hundreds of students crowded around the stage to see Ra Ra Riot, who hail from Syracuse, New York. With fast-paced hits like “Too Too Too Fast” and “Run My Mouth”, this unique band quickly turned the small venue into a dance hall. Lead Singer Wes Miles kept the excitement going by jumping from instrument to instrument, occasionally picking up the bass or playing keyboard for a song. He even sat out for bit, while cello player Alexandra Lawn took lead vocals for their haunting ballad, “You and I Know”.

The audience danced and cheered in approval as the band played an hour-long show with a set list that included tracks from both of their albums. Ra Ra Riot played several songs from their latest record, The Orchard, such as “Too Dramatic and Boy”. They also seemed to play more songs off of their debut album, The Rhumb Line, with classics such as “Can You Tell” and “Each Year”. The audience obviously approved of the band’s decision.

After playing hits from both of their albums, Ra Ra Riot thanked the crowd for a great show and seemingly left. But it wasn’t long before the band jumped back on stage to prep for an encore. “Play ‘Ghost Under Rocks’!” yelled an excited fan. Wes Miles smiled and walked up to the microphone after taking a swig from his water bottle. “Yeah we can play that,” said Miles with a grin. The band ended with the opening track from their debut album followed by one of their most popular songs, “Dying is Fine”.

After an electrifying performance by Ra Ra Riot, hundreds of students poured out of the Wow Hall with sore feet and pounding eardrums. With both the McDonald Theater and the Wow Hall bringing in tons of musical acts, this concert looks to be one on a great list of performances in Eugene this winter.

Soundbites: Zion I, S.O.J.A., and Rebelution

Zion I


In a night of Reggae, Zion I’s hip-hop was a refreshing opening. The duo of DJ AmpLive and MC Zumbi hail from Oakland, California. Zumbi’s high-energy performance combined with AmpLive’s beats and samples transformed a sluggish crowd into a bouncing, cheering mob.



Bringing their distinct sound all the way from Arlington, Virginia Soldiers of Jah Army put an interesting spin on Reggae music with its 80’s hair metal guitar solos. The seven-member band includes a saxophone and trumpet that make for some great interludes during their otherwise very Reggae songs.



They may look like frat boys, but don’t let that fool you. Rebelution has a laid-back style that mellows you out and promotes socially conscious ideals. The Santa Barbara-based band has already garnered radio play and seems well on their way to a mass following.

Soundbites: Fruit Bats

[caps]O[/caps]n the evening of January 30th, 2010, Eugene’s historic WOW Hall, a venue known for offering a wide swatch of upcoming musical acts, once again rang with the sound of handclap and pedal steel guitar, its folksy twang echoing some of the city’s most infamous years.

The first act might not have been on the bill, but Jared Mees and the Grown Children brought their best, surprising the crowd with a set bursting with energy and a fun, full sound, adding percussion, keyboard, trumpet, and violin to the traditional rock mix with trusting abandon.

Although Mees, the founder of the group, seemed soft-spoken in introducing the band, he came to life in song, joined with perfect aplomb by charismatic keyboardist and co-singer Megan Spear. Playing songs primarily from Caffeine, Alcohol, Sunshine, Money and from an as-yet-unnamed upcoming album, the songs got the crowd moving the way an opening act should – “Tallest Building in Hell” and the sing-along “Shake” stand out as favorites.

The second act was on the bill, and although it didn’t quite mesh with the folk rock theme of the night, Tu Fawning enchanted the crowd in its own way. Folding harmonizing vocal tones into synthesized keyboard hums, the high-concept Portland band led by Corinna Repp and Joe Haege mixes the organic with the mechanical, creating the kind of experimental indie pop the Northwest is increasingly known for.

With tambourines in hand and guitar feedback at the ready, Tu Fawning put on a performance notably louder and more raw than their studio recording, pairing heartbeat-like rhythms with Repp’s haunting vocals to create something all at once charming and tense and trancelike.

The night’s main act was folk rock outfit The Fruit Bats, a group of tweed-clad Chicago imports now making their home in Portland. The Fruit Bats are out promoting their fourth album, The Ruminant Band, generally regarded as their strongest entry into the indie pop category.

What the Fruit Bats do, they do well: folksy jams with a touch of rockabilly and a surprising dash of electric guitar carry the show, with many of the songs punctuated by lead singer and guitarist Eric Johnson’s heartfelt wailing lyrics (a sound quickly becoming a uniting factor in today’s indie scene). It’s the moments when guitarist Sam Wagster jumps onto pedal steel guitar (as in “Primitive Man”) that you can best hear the album’s roots in 60’s folk rock – most notably, Dylan collaborators The Band – but there are clear dashes of influence from contemporaries like Wilco and The Shins (whom Johnson tours with) as well, mellowing the music from protest rock to late summer soundtrack.

The set transitioned well, segueing from a foot-stomping rendition of “When U Love Somebody” (from 2003’s Mouthfuls) to the melancholy “Singing Joy to the World” with relative ease. (Kudos go out to the band for continuing to tolerate the tremendously rude crowd, who, in between shouting out requests, continued an incessant chatter through even this quiet acoustic piece.)

Medium Troy at WOW Hall

SoundBites: WOW Hall – Friday, Jan. 22nd

Medium Troy

Medium Troy at WOW Hall

[caps]S[/caps]elf-described “Bohemian Dub” band Medium Troy has earned itself a solid foothold in Eugene’s local music scene. Formed locally in the Fall of 2006, Medium Troy began as a hip-hop/jam band/singer-songwriter mutt and has since evolved into a new breed entirely. With support from their local fan base known as the Squirrel Crew, the band is in the midst of becoming a full time gig while capitalizing on the success of their first album “Bohemian Dub.”

Medium Troy at WOW Hall

Anthony B

[caps]J[/caps]amaican reggae artist Anthony B has produced 13 albums and written over 1000 singles since his music career began in 1996. His upbringing in Jamaica has had a strong influence on his lyrics, which cry out against social injustice and give a voice to the impoverished and marginalized. His latest album “Life Over Death” is yet another success and another chapter in his ongoing spiritual journey.

For more information on the bands, check out their websites:

Medium Troy

Anthony B

SoundBites: WOW Hall – Sunday, Jan. 17th

The Dirty Commies

[caps]A[/caps]t first glance, The Dirty Commies look like your average slacker, gutter punk band. Their sound, however, is anything but. A Eugene band, they conjure up a soul-busting Southern style, playing a range of instruments from the jug and the harmonica to the washboard and the bass washboard.

Bloodbath Burlesque Orchestra

[caps]I[/caps]magine a banjo-playing, angsty Ani DiFranco playing with an equally angsty, accordian-playing Regina Spektor singing edgy, French vaudeville and you might imagine something like Eugene band Bloodbath Burlesque Orchestra. With a vocal range from raspy to light and sensual, they put forth a musical sound that is incredibly complex to describe, but a simple, refreshing energy that radiates out.

The Reverend Peyton’s Big Damn Band

[caps]T[/caps]hree people with a GIANT sound that reverberates throughout the entire WOW Hall and floods out into the street. With Jayme Peyton on drums, Breezy Peyton on the washboard – which she lights on fire at the end of the set – and the Reverend Peyton doing crazy things with acoustic guitars, this thrillbilly band from Indianapolis is definitely “Born Bred, Corn Fed.”

For more information on the bands, check out their websites: