The first and most important thing to say about Minimal Effort All Hallow’s Eve is this:
Don’t believe everything you read.
When there are problems with an event the news travels faster than a Formula One race car. Before the speakers turn off angry people are posting in all caps, using adjectives like “horrible” and verbs like “ruined.”
It doesn’t matter how well other aspects of the event may have gone, or if it was actually the fault of LA County and the Fire Marshal.
There were a lot of really cool things about Minimal Effort All Hallow’s Eve. The sets were great, and people were really enjoying the venue.
“I like how they’re keeping the big [overhead] doors open so it’s not too hot inside,” said Ernest Johnson of Los Angeles.
“It’s a cool vibe,” said Eric Mora of Burbank.
The most impressive thing about Minimal Effort All Hallow’s Eve was the layout. The new venue wasn’t big, yet they were able to create two separate environments: the Dead Garden and Claptone’s Masquerade.
The Masquerade was a straight-up warehouse party with lights and lasers flashing and shooting all over. DJs like Amine Edge & Dance and Brodinski opted for blazing hard techno, and the crowd was loving it. Even MK who’s known for piano chords and sultry vocals filled his set with darker sounds.
The Dead Garden was a stage pulled right out of a festival. Colored lights cast an eerie glow over the dance floor as legendary vibe curators like Lee Burridge and Dusky played tunes under the stars.
These two stages were less than 30 steps from each other, but they were sonically separate. Neither stage was too crowded either so it was easy to find a good spot.
Considering it was the first time Minimal Effort (or any major electronic music promoter) held an event at this venue, this is noteworthy. The layout is one of the most consistent issues with using a venue for the first time. Veteran companies like Do Lab and Insomniac are constantly changing the layout of venues they use every year. Minimal Effort did a great job on the first pass.
Also like other events using a venue for the first time, there were other issues as well. The most notable of which were the barring of entry at 9:45 p.m. (even for ticket holders), and the event ending at 1:20 a.m. instead of 2:00 a.m..
Every ticket holder who didn’t get in deserves to be upset. A refund doesn’t replace a wasted night, but it’s essential that they know what really happened.
Minimal Effort addressed the two major issues in a recent Facebook post. According to them the city and the Fire Marshal were responsible for both. The fact is, regardless of whatever permits an event may have, the Fire Marshal can always step in. After all, if there actually was a safety issue (there wasn’t) there wouldn’t be time for bureaucracy.
The important thing to consider is that most cities don’t have the same history with electronic music as LA. The people in charge still vividly remember EDC 2011, HARD Summer, and Ghost Ship. To them, every electronic music event will end in tragedy, and they’d rather not have them in their city.
The only people who actually want events like Minimal Effort within the city of Los Angeles are the promoters like Minimal Effort and the community of people who show up. They’re keeping the scene alive.
So I am grateful to Minimal Effort for the taking the risk of putting on an event that is fun, safe, and pays tribute to the culture.
Photo Credit: Jamie Rosenberg