The block party took over The Fillmore Campus on Friday, doing its darnedest to make everyone forget the near 100° temperatures
The Adult Swim Festival was billed as a block party bonanza that offered chart-topping artists, comedic stalwarts, and a bevy of concessions and activities. Despite the weekend scorcher, the festival delivered on all that and more. Taking in the sights and sounds was a lot easier with the venues pumping in the AC and Other Half Brewing doling out delicious drafts.
The first day was all about getting a lay of the land. I knew I’d miss Run The Jewels (Incubus was playing in Camden that night, sue me). However, I wanted to at least get an idea of what the festival had to offer.
As I toured the grounds, I noticed an endless amount of activities. Wendy’s Human Claw unsurprisingly had a big draw, but it was the Hot Dog ride that provided the most entertainment (at least for one attendee).
There was no lack of seating around the Fillmore Campus, but shade was pretty hard to come by. This presented the perfect opportunity to try out Other Half Brewing’s collaboration with Adult Swim – a fruity and refreshing pale ale.
After the refreshments, I took one more lap before heading out for the evening. While my Day 1 was cut short, it certainly built my anticipation for Day 2.
Day 2 of the Adult Swim Festival kicked off at Brooklyn Bowl with Snacktime, the funky Philly jam band collective that featured brass, horns, and a freaking tuba. I caught myself in a groove a number of times during their 30 minute set as they wasted no time hyping up the crowd. These guys jam, and they jam hard.
Aqua Teen Hunger Force Panel & Chill Moody
Next up was a quick stop by Punch Line to check out the Aqua Teen Hunger Force panel, an adolescent favorite of mine. Dave Willis (Meatwad), Dana Snyder (Master Shake), and Carey Means (Frylock) provided some insight into the most memorable ATHF moments.
It was back to Brooklyn Bowl after that for local product Chill Moody’s set. Not only does he possess a relatable and charismatic approach to his music, but he’s always finding ways to improve the community and provide opportunities for entrepeneurs. In that spirit, he also highlighted his collab with Dock Street Brewery – nicethingsIPA.
Eshu Tune (aka Hannibal Buress)
One of the most anticipated performances of the weekend was Hannibal Buress’ new project, Eshu Tune. Brooklyn Bowl was filling up well before he took the stage, and as soon as he came out you could tell people were ready for something unexpected.
He meandered his way through the set a lot like a stand-up routine. Each song was prefaced with a few words about the creative process, and then a timely set up joke. Even the hooks for each track sounded like a punch line. If this performance was any indication, Hannibal Buress can definitely make it as a rapper. Here’s to hoping he’s on the next season of American Rapper Warrior Ninja.
DJ Diamond Kuts
After a brief
nap respite in some AC, it was time for local legend DJ Diamond Kuts to take the stage at The Fillmore. Blending hip-hop classics and Top 40 bangers, the set provided everything you could hope for as a prelude to Tierra Whack. There was a very engaging and inclusive vibe as her entire crew was actively interracting with the crowd.
There’s no denying that Tierra Whack is unique. From the flowery dress and cape combo to the white Balenciaga rainboots, her visual representation is a great indication of her musical catalog. High energy, don’t give a fuck attitude, and great call and response with the crowd were all apparent. She did start to lose me towards the end of her set when she mentioned that she “had to take a dookie”, but I think we can let that one slide.
Closing out Day 2 was ‘Whole Lotta Money’ rapper Bia. She without a doubt had the best wardrobe of the day. Not only did she bring a ton of sass and energy, but her backup dancers took things to the next level. Also, that monogram “Bia” chain is some big baller shit.
It was my birthday on Sunday so you’ll forgive me for arriving a little later for Day 3. First up was ascending rapper BbyMutha at Brooklyn Bowl. I didn’t know much about her prior to the set, but a quick Wikipedia search showed that her biggest musical influence is Gucci Mane. I’m on board with that. Her set reflected that, featuring a nice blend of lyrically diverse tracks.
I did not anticipate how popular a live Dethklok set would be. As familiar as I was with the TV show, I had no idea how dedicated this fanbase truly is. There was barely room to move through the slightly pungent crowd as I made my way to the photo pit. Minimal backlighting for the beginning of the set certainly provided for some choice shots. One of the highlights was a short video interlude urging attendees to practice good show hygienge. What a coincidence.
The final act of the weekend was Flo Milli. Sporting her signature small waist, pretty face, and big bank (they’re her lyrics, relax), she actively engaged with the crowd. Flo Milli could be seen taking multipe selfies throughout her set. Combine that with dynamic stage lighting and the result is outstanding.
The Adult Swim Festival offered not only high quality performances, but an intimacy amongst artists and fans. Not only did the block party bring out the Adult Swim faithful, it was an opportunity to see a variety of different genres and fans mingle throughout the Fillmore campus. Going from Dethklok to Flo Milli is about as divergent as it can get. Amidst heatwave temperatures, the Adult Swim Festival’s East Coast debut was a scorching success.