The illustrious Lafayette Hotel was host to a menagerie of wild & eccentric acts to celebrate the New Year.

The glamour and luxuriousness of old-time Hollywood was on full display at the Lafayette as attendees, adorned in their most ravishing outfits, lined the outside of the hotel waiting to enter the Enchanted Carnivàle party. Everywhere you looked, the oddities came full force. Whether it was a woman rolling by as a mermaid, a man on stilts towering above, or the nudging of a little person attempting to push through the crowds, it was an extravaganza, punctuated by the performance of several fantastic and appropriately fitting musical acts.

We caught The Strawberry Moons, who took command of the stage with strong melodies and beautiful, psychedelic, pop-rock arrangements. There’s a surprising amount of melancholy to be found in the mannerisms of The Strawberry Moons, who for all their outer polish, manage to toe the line between emotionality and catchy tunes. Their songs were an upbeat burst of energy and a perfect fuel to light the fire burning towards midnight.

Downstairs, Low Volts gave a truly maniacal performance. Frontman Tim Lowman was restrained in the way he played with only a few dirty guitar riffs and a kick drum. That kick drum could split you in half. A master of suspense, he stood atop his kick drum, looking out into the swelling crowd, before bursting into a rhythmic reverie. It felt simultaneously delicate and roaring.

Belladon led the pack with the performance of the night. They had a mystifying hold on the enthralled audience, who danced along. Attendees weren’t afraid to place themselves against the stage as vocalist Aimee Jacobs stepped off the stage and sang directly in the eyes of those who were watching her and her band. Belladon played an ethereal set that was relentless in its ability to create an ocean of sounds.

It came time to countdown the new year and as I filled my arms with glasses of champagne, struggling to push through the crowd to reach the main ballroom, the countdown reached zero.

It was a Happy New Year, as only the Lafayette could.

Review By: Brian Strauss
Photos By: Sylvia Borgo