Spring Into Summer Fest was full of little surprises this weekend. From the giant stage to a rapper missing his pearly whites, there was never a dull moment at the local music festival.

Nobody really expected the Replay to bust out such a large stage for the outdoor portion of Spring Into Summer Fest. It was pretty intense, but really rewarding to see some local favorites on such a big stage.

This was our first time seeing The Recessionists. The band was half 60’s girl group (with a whole lot of shoulder-shimmying attitude), half forlorn doo-wop. Scroll to the bottom of the photo gallery for a video of their performance.

30 seconds into Approach’s set and we were already pumped. The man was missing some front teeth, but gave us a pretty flawless performance anyway. He started off the set with a bit of a warning to the audience: “If I jump off the stage and hurt myself, don’t worry. I’m used to it.” He then pointed to his missing teeth, and was still grinning wide by the end of his set.

The perfect Kansas sunset and Fourth of July carried us into the evening. The thing about Fourth of July songs is they really grow on you. You couldn’t hate them if you tried (it doesn’t help that the Hangauer brothers tend to snuggle onstage when they play). Those new songs are killer, and you could really tell the band is getting pumped about their upcoming record.

By the time Hearts of Darkness took the stage, the outdoor portion of the night had become an all-out party. The band is legit, and their groovy tunes immediately got folks cutting a rug. There were so many members in that band, I was surprised they all fit onstage. Hearts of Darkness are a must-see band if you enjoy dancing to live music.

The second half of the festival took place inside and eventually grew to contain an overflowing crowd of incredibly tipsy concert-goers. It was so packed that by the time we left, there was a line to the corner of the block full of people waiting to get in (yet another surprise at the festival).

The night mainly belonged to loud garage rockers. Dry Bonnet is never a disappointment, and (as predicted) Nature Boys delivered a solid set complete with rowdy fans waiting to burst at the seams. The night rounded out with Up The Academy, and by then our hearing was just shot. We drove home with a musical appetite overly satisfied and our ears happily ringing.



Fally Afani is an award-winning journalist with a career spanning more than 20 years in media. She has worked extensively in radio, television, newspapers, magazines, and more.

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