Ink-N-Iron Kustum Kulture Long Beach
News, Photos and Features
Friday, June 12th
The Ink-N-Iron Long Beach Kustum Kulture festival (est. 2003) kicked off on June 12th, 2015 at 2pm on the Queen Mary luxury ship and village grounds. More than 30 bands performed over the three day weekend and were showcased on multiple stages around the festival grounds and aboard the Queen Mary. There were several bands busking and keeping up the musical variety in many corridors and corners. The festival offered multiple art shows, a tattoo convention with over 200 artists, a car and motorcycle show, pole dancing competitions and over 50 booths featuring art, clothing and other original product ideas. Many of the vendors offered unique hand crafted goods such as custom leather corsets, detailed silver jewelry from Femme Metale and unique silk screens from Fatal and Serpentine to name a few. There was even a three chair barber booth from Hawleywood’s and of course Xtreme Party Games selling Beer Shooters. Special thanks to Tres Noir Optics for contributing several lens cloths for NMM’s sunglasses and cameras.
The 2015 festival was the last gathering under the name “Ink-N-Iron” in Long Beach and will be changing the name to “Art Gathering LA“. The main Ink-N-Iron festival will continue to be held in Nashville, Tennessee.
The first day’s music performances began with Los Rhythm Rockets out of East Los Angeles followed by Three Times Bad who performed on the Tiki Drive-In Stage at 2pm. Three Times Bad is a mountain folk rock band with a jamboree performance style that generated a friendly afternoon atmosphere. Both early bands offered the crowd lots of energy on Friday afternoon and both performed really uplifting and timeless sets.
At 5pm, the San Francisco based band Rumble Strippers took to the Tiki Drive-In Stage and delivered a solid performance featuring JoJo Sorrentino on vocals with guitarist Benjamin Hudson along with rhythm section members Eden Uscilowski Grace on drums and Ansgar Lorenz on bass and back-up vocals. “We are a band of exceptionally attractive musicians with a taste for early rock and roll. And also tiki drinks.”
D.on Darox and The Melody Joy Bakers began their performance at 7pm on the Tiki stage and proved they were one of the hardest working bands at the festival. The band members delivered a heartfelt performance and they busked for the remainder of the festival. The lead vocalist and multi-instrumentalist D.on Darox has been the “father” of the project for about 6 years prior to the 2015 Ink-N-Iron appearance.
D.on: “Our band will be touring in early August to INI in Nashville. We plan to play in Arizona, New Mexico, Texas, Oklahoma, Arkansas, Tennessee, Colorado and if we can get a gig in Las Vegas, then there too.. I would just like to add, that in the history of bands that played Ink N Iron Longbeach, I believe in many ways ours has been the luckiest. Big thanks to everyone.”
The main stage on Friday kicked off with the band War On Women at 6:30, which gave a rather intense performance using some dark vocals and shouts, including some lyrics about abortion. The band was followed by The Dickies at 7:30pm. The after-dark acts included the band Bouncing Souls and Pennywise. The band Bouncing Souls were formed in New Jersey in the late 1980’s and prior to their performance at Ink-N-Iron in 2015, their latest album release was in 2012 titled Comet. In 2013, drummer George Rebelo of the band Against Me! joined.
The band Pennywise closed the Friday night main stage with some mosh pits and a good outdoor Long Beach breeze along side the giant luxury ship built in the 1930’s. The performance was a great closer for Friday because of the punk rock acts performing in the evening hours and the fact that the band was formed right up the coast in Hermosa Beach. Pennywise released the album Yesterdays on July 15th, 2014 and remains a band that continuously releases solid, original and true-to-themselves tunes. The remainder of the late night festivities included performances in the Observation Bar on the Queen Mary by The Jimmy Psyco Experiment that were on stage from after midnight until bar close.