Day for Night is legit y’all. This weekend, I went for the first time and had the most INCREDIBLE time! The festival is like nothing I’ve ever seen before. It’s a combination of music, art installations and speakers–along with fabulous downtown views, post-apocalyptic vibes and fabulous people watching.
This year, it took place at Post HTX which is the old downtown Post Office. It’s a massive warehouse with giant columns and industrial vents and slots that they’ve lit up red and blue with smoke machines blowing. Sans some projected schedules and maps, the place is pitch black, making way for some incredible light and sound art installations.
I’ve driven by this location a zillion times–it’s on the north side of downtown near the Worthem Center. But I never really appreciated it until this weekend. Driving by it’s all lit up and you can hear music bumping from blocks away!
Hurricane Harvey (yellow) versus #HoustonStrong (blue)
I’ve seen some pretty cool installations at the MFAH and around the world, but these take it to a WHOLE OTHER level! They’re massive, interactive, LOUD, and mesmerizing. We probably spent as much time sitting on the floor staring at the lights (sober, mind you) as we did listening to the music. They were that legit! There were about 15 installations scattered about the first and second floors of Post HTX. Many of the installations were built specifically for the site and took advantage of the columns and florescent lighting to project light and sound around the room.
We were particularly mesmerized by a group of columns that were synchronized to light up to this futuristic sound track. It reminded me a bit of the Rain installation at the Cistern–just more electronic and alien. I was also obsessed with the disco ball installation. Eighty disco balls were suspended in a net from the ceiling with spot lights shining onto them in various patterns. The reflections and sparkles were incredible!
Side note: I also spent $10 and got a 10 minute massage. YOLO. It was amazing and life saving after running 11 miles (half marathon training!) and being on my feet wandering around the festival all day. Totally a cool perk that people should take advantage of more.
The festival spills outside as well with loads of food vendors (where I had the best loaded fries from Mingo’s Latin Kitchen food truck!), a “Lair of Mischief” with Toyota where you can check out their new C-HR, as well as a few stages. Inside the Lair of Mischief, they were giving away scarves, light up tambourines and had a glitter station! I ran into a few friends at the concert (as well as some blog fans!!) which is always fun! However, rumor (Reddit) has it, that two-thirds of the people that attend the concert are not from Houston. Whether that’s true or not, it’s almost believable given how cool and unique everything was! It’s so distinct from other festivals I’ve been too that take places in parks or parking lots–ACL, VooDoo Fest, Warped Tour, Free Press, etc.
The music was awesome too! Many of the artists tend towards a very electronic, futuristic, industrial vibe. My music vocabulary isn’t large enough to express what they exactly were, but the combination of the space, light and sound made for a super cool experience. I loved seeing Pussy Riot, Pretty Lights and Jenny Hval. We actually saw Nadya from Pussy Riot in the VIP tent (thanks Toyota C-HR for the tickets!!) and was totally star struck and couldn’t say anything other than an embarrassing “you’re amazing I love you” – very Damian from Mean Girls-esque. Danny Divito I love your work!
I spent the weekend with a little staycation at the Hilton America Downtown which is just so beautiful at Christmas time. I was also driving around town in Toyota’s C-HR! As a traveling consultant, I’ve driven a lot of rental cars in the past year, and this one definitely tops the list in terms of comfort and usability. I was pretty into the touchscreen radio. It had a voice activation features that was delightful to play with for hands free driving. Please turn on 104.1! Also, the C-HR had lovely heated seats which was a lifesaver post-rain at the concert. The back seats are also pretty interesting because the door handle is located near the top of the door instead of at waist level — unique design! The car also beeps when you begin to edge out of your lane. If you don’t have a turn signal on, the car will resist slightly and actually autocorrect your steering back into the correct lane. What a great feature–especially on long car rides!
All in all, it was such a fun weekend! Will definitely be back for Day for Night next year!