One of Columbus’ largest Halloween parties descended upon the city to give Ohio State students a reason to dress up, dance and enjoy some of the top EDM artists in the music industry, on Friday.
Presented by Prime Social Group, a festival and concert promotion company that organizes college-based events such as Breakaway Music Festival, Haunted Fest returned to Columbus for its fifth consecutive year.
Haunted Fest has a history of bringing EDM artists to the Ohio Expo Center over the years, such as Zeds Dead, Martin Garrix, Kaskade and Marshmello. The 2018 lineup was no different with headlining acts such as Alan Walker, Tchami and Porter Robinson.
The festival was held at the Lausche Building, which boasts a total of 52,000 square feet of floor space. Despite the spacious venue, Haunted Fest was packed to the brim. The line stretched outside the building, around the corner and down the road with wait times as long as an hour — a testament to the popularity of the event.
Once inside, festivalgoers were able to hang their jackets at the coat check station, buy $10 water bottles at the bar and visit the small but entertaining silent disco.
Farther inside the festival, dancers dressed in gas masks and bunny ears performed on a small elevated stage, and the transitions between musical acts were a soundtrack of recorded screams — details that added to the creepy atmosphere Prime Social Group wanted to emote.
Tchami took the stage before Robinson and performed his signature future-house music. The French DJ’s electronic beats and upbeat sound moved the sea of people in a way that made it hard to breathe. He transformed the room into a Gothic cathedral in 16th-century France for the entirety of his set. The song that gave Tchami widespread recognition, his remix of “Go Deep” by Janet Jackson, was definitely the highlight of his performance.
Robinson took the stage at 11:40 p.m. and hypnotized the crowd with his awe-inspiring performance. Playing an array of original songs, remixes and recent music released under the name of his alter ego, Virtual Self, Robinson kept the audience on its toes with a mix of the old and new Robinson. The middle of his set was filled with experimental-bass music set at an intensely high number of beats-per-minute. He closed the show with two of his top songs, “Shelter” and “Language.” The audience sang along with him to the very end.
As the night came to a close at 1 a.m., festivalgoers shuffled out of the Lausche Building exhausted, drenched in sweat and smiling — the top three indicators of a quality EDM show. Haunted Fest did not disappoint.