EDM fan-favorite Something Wicked returned on Friday, from Oct. 29 to 30, for its fifth annual festival, possessing the grounds of Sam Houston Race Park.
The Houston-based festival was making its comeback after being canceled last year due to a hurricane. Despite multiple issues with previous festivals and weather, the Disco Donnie company was able to bounce back to surprising success. However, some of the issues were too serious to ignore.
The lines to enter the festival were awesome, and the staff were great and made it a quick process getting into the festival. A noticeably smaller amount of police officers were present at the festival, giving festival attendees a more comfortable vibe as an overabundant amount of aggressive security has been an issue in the past.
The festival was equipped with its usual Wicked stage set-up, complimented by three stages that included a laser skull, which dazzled the main stage with spectacular lighting. The VIP sections were appropriately sectioned off, with no impediment to the stages and a great view.
Another massive skull stood as a middle marker for festival attendees to rest with their friends and still experience all three stages from a farther, less crowded setting.
The grounds also included an amazing selection of food, ranging from tacos, corn dogs and fresh fruit smoothies. The festival also provided multiple tents of rave merchandise, lockers to safely store your belongings and even blow-up chairs for attendees to lounge and relax.
The overall ambiance of the festival worked, but the actual ground is turning into an issue. Sam Houston Race Park doesn’t seem to be the best place for the festival to be held anymore, as the grounds have become unstable over the years. Massive holes in the grounds have caused festival goers to frequently trip, including myself.
Some witnesses also saw a Wicked attendee whose wheeler chair became lodged in a hole, and needed assistance getting out since many of those holes are too steep.
Another issue was the blatant and upsetting sound issue that was experienced both days that had many attendees upset. The sound seemed to be extremely low for more than half of the show, as our normal voices seemed to be louder than the actual music itself.
“I paid a lot of money for this ticket, and for some reason, everyone except the headliners was silent both days,” said attendee Shannon Hernandez. “I don’t understand. This is the same thing that happened at Wonderful, too.”
DJ Carnage also expressed being upset. During the beginning of his set, he began yelling at the sound crew to “turn [the music] the fuck up.”
Later on, both nights, as the headliners took to the stage, the sound seemed to suddenly blow you off your feet. The sound issues plaguing both of the previous disc jockeys were fixed for everyone to enjoy their music.
When he was asked about the sound issue, Donnie, the owner of his namesake company, insisted that it was “just standard technical difficulty.”
This year’s festival still experienced a small fraction of issues, but overall, the endeavor prevailed this season with more than perfect weather and a considerable amount of festival goers dressed up in their best costumes. The whole mystique of everything truly helped the festival gather some “wicked” ambiance.