If you checked out last year's Halleluwah Festival—and I hope you did—you know how packed and intense and varied the thing was. Films, noise, psyche bands, electronic music, folksingers, tabling; it was a festival in the truest sense of the word. Now, as another Halleluwah looms in the future, event organizers Chantelle Hylton and Mike McGonigal (of Blackbird Presents and Yeti Magazine respectively) are throwing a series of preview shows. McGonigal fills us in on Miniluwah, happening Sunday, February 4 at Holocene with Whip, Plants, and Ilyas Ahmed.
Tell us about Miniluwah.
They're little bitty events done in the spirit of Halleluwah by the main Halleluwah collaborators— Chantelle and myself! We are now housemates, so it's pretty easy to confer with each other and collaborate (though we're both so busy, we don't even see each other that often.) The idea is partly to keep the "Halleluwah" name around, or to, I guess you could say, "brand" it, to help ensure that people are psyched for the bigger Labor Day weekend fest. Also, it's clear that people were bummed that the Church of Psychedelia monthly Sunday events had stopped, so we are basically stealing that idea. That's partly why I wanted to make sure the Plants play the first one; also they're such a great band!
What's going down for this year's big fest?
For this year, we'll have some really rad out of town performers, including very hopefully a group who are giants of Turkish psychedelic rock music, who've never played the States before. I'd like to see more of a literary angle to the thing happen this year. In all likelihood, we'll be putting on the next Halleluwha Fest at Holocene—Disjecta is an awesome space, but it would be nice, for instance, to not have to rent two sound systems. One of the things I think we learned is that if you have two people playing at the same time, one of them always loses—and at Holocene we could conceivably just switch from stage to stage, as they have two. And if we stretch the event out over a few more days, Holocene could easily accommodate the kind of crowds we had at the first event. Not to mention that Holocene is such a great club. I mean, they even have food you'd want to eat! Obviously, we'll see; anything could happen. It would be nice to not lose money this next time, or not as much! For now, we're just excited about these little free events. Did we mention it's free and doesn't cost any money?