Cloak & Dagger Music Festival - A Q&A About Breaking Down Music Festival Boundaries

by Flaunt Intern

Throughout the years, music festivals have always combined different acts to bring a single vibe or concept. This year Adam Bravin of She Wants Revenge put together a festival like no other taking place in the heart of Los Angeles. Aiming towards the darker side of music, Bravin was able to combine music of different genres to create a single aesthetic. From hip-hop to rock, the Cloak & Dagger Music Festival - Dusk Till Dawn is set to bring out the goth in all genres. 

Presented by Spaceland and Restless Nites, the Cloak & Dagger festival will feature some of the biggest names of the dark-side including The Jesus And Mary Chain, She Wants Revenge, The Soft Moon, Cold Cave, and many more!

FLAUNT got a chance to speak to Adam one-on-one about his creation of the Cloak & Dagger Music Festival, and discuss the process of making a festival like no other.

What is the inspiration behind creating the “Cloak & Dagger” Music Festival?

The Cloak & Dagger Music Festival is an extension of what we do at the weekly Cloak & Dagger event. The weekly event was inspired by the need to have some kind of event on a weekly basis in Los Angeles where people with common aesthetic and common interest in music, literature, art, and fashion could come. So the weekly club was inspired by wanting a place where I could play everything from Nine Inch Nails to Depeche Mode, to Notorious B.I.G. and Wu-Tang Clan. So after doing that club for a few years my agent Pete Anderson and I started discussing if there was any festival in the world that did the same thing in terms of combining genres not just a goth festival or an industrial festival, but a festival that included goth and industrial but included a little bit of hip-hop, a little bit of ambience, a little bit of everything, so we were just trying to create a festival that was more curated towards a little bit broader of a spectrum of music then a lot of these festivals tend to be.

In your press release it mentions you wanted something more evolved from the “darker” side of nightlife. Can you expand a little more on what you are going for?

Goth is an interesting term because it keeps changing and evolving and it doesn’t really mean anything to me, but I understand what people mean when they say it. So we, Michael Patterson my partner of Cloak & Dagger weekly event, just started having these conversations about what would it look like if we had a club where I could play a little bit of all the different genres of music that I know have a "darker side" because I tend to gravitate towards that type of music. So I wanted a place where I could play a little bit of everything and figure out someway to blend it all together, while also trying to attract people with a higher sense of fashion. Even though we have everybody wear all black, it just feels like people go out of their way knowing that they have to wear all black every week to kind of step it up a little bit.  We also wanted to add an immersive vibe so it's not just a nightclub. 

Do you plan on bringing back Cloak & Dagger annually and what are your future plans for the festival?

We’re definitely discussing doing other things with the festival, potentially next year in Los Angeles, in multiple cities, multiple countries, who knows. We’re going to get through this first one and make it as successful as possible and as user-friendly for all the people that are coming and make its great experience. And I know that for me first-year festivals tend to go either way in terms of how smoothly it runs, so we're just trying to make it as easy as possible for people to have a good time– see the bands that they want to see and have no worries– and making it the best time for people attending. 

You have artists in your lineup of different types of music, what was your intention when curating this line-up you created? Was there a specific vibe of music you were going for?

The intention was to show people we could have a festival that could include multiple genres while still keeping the overall vibe and aesthetic. We got started a little late on the curation part of the festival so some of our original ideas, those bands were already booked. I think in a perfect world there would probably be a little bit more hip-hop artists, the ones that we were originally going after were all already booked. I would really like to redefine the “dark music” genre and make people aware that it doesn’t always have to be what you expect. It can be whatever we want it to be, you can imagine it and create it like everything else. 

Cloak & Dagger - Dusk Till Dawn is an expansion of your members-only weekly event, how did you come up with the idea to expand on this and turn a weekly event into a two-day music festival?

When we hit the one-year mark at the weekly event we started thinking about a 2-year event and what that would look like. I'm in the band She Wants Revenge and we started to think of doing a kind of secret show where we could play and other band members who attend the event could play live music. That led to a discussion with my agent and we started investigating if there was any festival in the world that mixes genres of music like we do at the club and we found that there really isn’t anything like it. 

Your own band She Wants Revenge is on the lineup of Cloak & Dagger, can fans expect anything new from you guys at the event? 

Just last year was the ten year anniversary of our debut album so all we were doing last year was playing that record and played a little more of our favorites. This year we played a little more of a combination of our first record, second and third record and one of our EPs. Justin, my bandmate from She Wants Revenge, just texted me yesterday and said, “hey this festival is your baby, you should really just sit down and come up with the set list,” so I think that it could potentially be a set unlike anyone that we have ever done before, and I definitely want it to be different than any set that we have ever done.

The Cloak & Dagger- Dusk Till Dawn Music Festival will take place on October 20-21 at The Globe Theatre + The Palace Theatre. Be sure to check out their website on the link above, and tickets are on sale now! 

Written by Alex Ceballos