CEMF: Day 2
The second day of CEMF brought a whole new sound to Bingeman’s. In contrast to the heavier stuff that was performed on day one, such as Kingdoms and Protest the Hero, the music on day two was much more upbeat.
CEMF pass-holders heard from bands such as Candy Coated Killahz, Dinosaur Bones, and the much-anticipated headliner: The Roots.
Starting off their set with a beat from the band’s sousaphone player, the Roots were by far the most popular performance of CEMF. Their sound – a combination of hip-hop and funk – really got the crowd moving. This was amplified by the fact that by this time of night most people in the crowd were completely drunk.
Earlier in the day, the drug of choice for those at CEMF was marijuana, particularly in the Underground Operations lounge where the 4-20 Olympics were taking place.
The 4-20 Olympics is a competition testing the participants’ ability to do things after smoking copious amounts of weed. When asked about the park’s involvement in this event, the 4-20 co-ordinators jokingly acted oblivious, and later stated that “the 4-20 Olympics were a mission from God.”
Later in the Underground Operations lounge, a pie-eating contest took place between members of Kingdoms and some pass-holders. Expectedly, this competition resulted in a food fight and the crowd, who chose not to participate in the fight, fled the tent to avoid being hit in the face with raspberry pie.
As for the musical performances, here are some of the highlights.
Rebel Emergency: Most likely to become professional surfers
Rebel Emergency hit the stage mid-afternoon with hopes of pumping up the crowd with their reggae rock.
The band’s guitarist did not stop smiling the entire time he was on stage and it was positively contagious.
The crowd was particularly enthusiastic when Roddy Soul, the vocalist, called the strongest men in the crowd up to the barricade and whipped out a surfboard from back stage. He then proceeded to toss the board to the crowd and stand on it.
He was, quite literally, crowd surfing. The audience went nuts.
After the set, one of the “strongest men” there recalled that Roddy “wasn’t heavy at all.”
“It was so fun except I was trying to get my camera to take a photo, but I couldn’t because I was holding the surfboard,” he said.
Chad Michael Stewart: Most likely to be mistaken for a celebrity
Chad Michael Stewart performed an acoustic set at CEMF in the Underground Operations lounge, making for a very intimate setting between Stewart and his 20-something spectators.
His deep, sultry voice oozed emotion particularly in a song inspired by a fan letter he received a few years ago. The letter was about a young man who accidentally killed three of his friends in a car accident. A year later, the young man committed suicide.
The audience was captivated by Stewart’s performance and, at the end of his set, a spectator stated that “there was a lot of passion and emotion in his songs, which is really good because a lot of people can relate to that.”
illScarlett: Most likely to reach new heights
Making their first appearance of the day in the Underground Operations lounge, Will Marr and Johnny Doherty from illScarlett competed in the infamous 4-20 Olympics. Their competitors were two members of Protest the Hero.
illScarlett, who performed and competed in the 4-20 Olympics last year, were not exactly defending champions. The previous winners, the Flatliners, however, could not make it back to CEMF this year, thus allowing illScarlett another shot at the title.
After continuously smoking weed for more than half an hour, the competitors were to compete in three challenges: math, build-a-bong and a pizza-eating race. After winning two of the three challenges, illScarlett came out victorious and the 4-20 onlookers cheered.
Their music set wasn’t bad either.
illScarlett engaged the crowd by encouraging people to sing along and wave their hands in the air. They even agreed to perform some of their older songs after conversing with a fan: “Excuse me? Did you just say fuck our new stuff play some old songs?”
Moneen: Most likely to smash their guitars
The pounding drive of the bass could be heard and felt throughout the entire park during Moneen’s set on the main stage. Those who were close to the stage seemingly had the time of their lives. They were moshing, crowd surfing and throwing things in the air.
“It was out of control!” said a fan after the show.
Not everyone, however, felt that way. One passerby mouthed, “They’re way too loud,” as he walked away from the stage.
Overall, though, this performance was a favourite of campers, day-pass holders, and other performers alike, including Kingdom’s Brett Hutton who claims, “Moneen should be the biggest band in the world!”
Bedouin Soundclash: Most likely to travel west
Bedouin Soundclash, one of the better-known bands at CEMF, had audience members singing along to almost every song in their set. The trumpet and saxophone players, who recently started touring with Bedouin, added a soulful-funky fervor to the performance and, overall, the show was very well received.
One spectator had this to say: “I was a little disappointed that they didn’t play ‘Santa Monica,’ it is my favourite song. But of all the times that I’ve seen Bedouin in the past, this was by far the most energy they had on stage. Also, I really liked the emphasis that they were putting on the sax and trumpet. It gave it a good vibe to dance to.”
To read Laura Sedgwick’s interview with Bedouin Soundclash, click here.