Three of Southern Africa’s major urban centers including Cape Town, Gauteng and Gabarone are gearing up for a massive weekend of alternative life-style activity as what can be regarded by our sort as a darker version of New Years level of festivity – Halloween – arrives. We’ve compiled an array of gigs and events into one post here to illustrate just how this has grown in Southern Africa over the years. Further deliberations on each show follow below the schedule.
In Cape Town:
26 October – 07 November ~ Horrorfest (film festival) at Labia Theatre
29 October ~ Bloody Parchment (literary extension of Horrorfest) at Labia Theatre
Friday 30 October ~ Huge & Sexy Halloween Party at Nameless Pub
Friday 30 October ~ Deity’s Muse ‘Satellites’ tour (from JHB) at ROAR
Saturday 31 October ~ The Zombie Walk beginning at The Company Gardens, Cape Town CBD
Saturday 31 October ~ The Halloween Slaughter at Mercury Live
Saturday 31 October ~ Blitzkrieg at Buckley’s
Saturday 31 October ~ Gandalf’s Halloween Party at ROAR & Gandalf’s
Saturday 31 October ~ Deity’s Muse ‘Satellite’ tour at The Rabbit Hole
Friday 30 October ~ Devil’s Night at Iron Tusk (feat. Imperial Destruction from Cape Town)
Saturday 31 October ~ Gorofest: Crossing Countries at Wolmer Bush Lounge (feat. Continental line-up)
Saturday 31 October ~ Halloween Party at RAD Experience
Saturday 31 October ~ Halloween Party at Smugglers Pub
Saturday 31 October ~ Metal Grinder 2015 at Gabarone Civic Center
Cape Town’s Horrorfest film festival celebrates its 11th year in 2015, hosted by Paul Blom and Sonja Ruppersburg-Blom from industrial band Terminatryx, and who also lead the live Macabre Ensemble act who, each year, provide live soundtrack to an antiquated silent film. Also included into the Horrorfest in more recent years is the literary component, Bloody Parchment, hosted this year by author Sally Partridge and other personalities. For full details, visit the official facebook event page.
Nameless Pub‘s Huge & Sexy Halloween Party in nearby Somerset West is an annual installation now in it’s 7th year, co-hosted as always by none other than locally resident heavy metal hard-hitters Mind Assault. The focus of the party series is to bring in a greater variety of sub-genres and people together for a night of masked entertainment and cross-interaction between many sub-cultures which are often found to be at odds with each other. Metal, punk, rock, dance, and even pop and hip-hop, features between three entertainment areas distributed throughout the venue in a unique annual opportunity to truly… become nameless and shameless! The live band line-up includes Mind Assault, Ill System, Half Price, and Set For The Sky.
Deity’s Muse are traveling to Cape Town to promote the release of their first single ‘Satellites’ from their forthcoming Convergence album, playing shows on Friday and Saturday (see previous article here).
In Gauteng, Iron Tusk sees their first Halloween since opening and will be occupied by Dark Noise for their 4th annual Devil’s Night party on Friday. Apart from a range of DJs playing the best in dark and heavy underground music across a wide range of genres, the night will also feature the official South African launch of Rammstein‘s new DVD, as well as one live band, death metallers Imperial Destruction travelling all the way from Cape Town (see previous article)
With Friday’s events wrapped up, we return focus to Cape Town for the Zombie Walk on Saturday, which has evolved into a monster event over it’s 6 years, growing from strength to strength. Beginning in the afternoon with a 4.5 kilometer walk from the Company Gardens in the CBD, down to the foreshore, it is a great and festive start to whatever Saturday night party one wishes to attend in various parts of the city afterwards. Full details here.
The Halloween Slaughter, presented by the United Underground, also marks it’s 6th year milestone. Most remarkably, this year it is free, which is great for trade at the merch table! Featuring the driving force behind the ‘brand’, Bulletscript, alongside Infiltrate Neutralize Govern, SubverS and Devilspeak. The Halloween Slaughter is a travelling event, having moved around from venues as far flung as Lanners Landing nearby Paarl, Stellenbosch and Cape Town central in previous years. This year sees a return to Cape Town with the show taking place at Mercury Live.
Burning Tone Records are hosting their 3rd annual Blitzkrieg event, typically the one show of the year which features all of the Burning Tone Records bands on a single line-up, and since 2014 co-coinciding with Halloween, and since 2014 also doing so at Buckley’s in Bellville. The ‘Burning Tone Bands’ are: Infanteria, Megalodon, Zombies Ate My Girlfriend and Betray The Emissary.
Gandalf’s have been hosting kick-ass Halloween parties for well over a decade, also with a little something for everyone, including live bands of rock and metal persuasions in ROAR upstairs. Line-up includes the likes of Wargrave, The Fallen Prophets, With Dawn, I Became Nothing, Conduit…
In Gauteng, the BIG one for Saturday night is Mozambique-based Gorofest‘s Crossing Countries festival at Wolmer Bush Lounge near Pretoria, featuring a jam-packed line-up with rock and metal bands from all over Africa, including from four South African cities and five African nations. To name just a few: Adorned In Ash (SA/pta), Demogoroth Satanum (SA/jhb), Desolation (SA/dbn), Imperial Destruction (SA/cpt), SarcotrofiA (Moz), Skinflint (Bot), Overthrust (Bot), Dor Fantasma (Angola), Last Year’s Tragedy (Kenya) and more… For a pittance R80, punters are welcome even to stay the night if they wish to bring tents and sleeping gear. More event details can be found at the official facebook event page, or at the previous article here.
For those with a little less stamina for an all-day at Gorofest, thrash bands Gunship, Tamla Khan and Death Trap will be entertaining at RAD Experience in Centurion. A little further South, Johannesburg metallers not willing to travel to Wolmer can enjoy a show at Smugglers Pub, including the likes of Envious Despair, Surdus, In Dreams, Kadawer Dialoog, Necramoth and more…
In neighbouring Botswana, plenty of bands remain at home who are not traveling to South Africa for Gorofest, offering the locals an invitation to Metal Grinder 2015 at Gabarone Civic Center. Hosted by the band Amok, the line-up will also include South Africa’s Urban Vitamin, as well as Crackdust, Dust N Fire, Remuda, PMMA and Barren Barrel all from Botswana. Full event details can be found at the official facebook event page.
With that, nobody can claim that the large urban centers are not spoiled for choice. Enjoy, and stay safe!