While Valentine’s Day and Christmas are two valiant contenders, Halloween is easily the most commercialised holiday of the year. Throughout October, we are besieged by mass-produced costumes, “spooktacular” savings on candy, and pumpkin spice-infused everything.
The amount of All Hallows-related propaganda may provoke fatigue for some, but the House of Horror committee embraced the night’s naturally cheesy persona for a B movie-themed advertising campaign. Traces of the campaign remained evident at the event itself, when guests emerged from the cobweb-covered entryway to enjoy their complimentary blood shots and some scarily delicious crepes.
Kinkell Byre set a suitably spooky stage for the promised night of spine-chilling fun. Similar to the Rule-based launch event, the entire venue was strewn with cobwebs, fake blood, stuffed rats and skulls. Humans, too, assumed decorative roles; a trio of appropriately unsetting actors functioned as a blood-splattered welcoming party. After tiptoeing past these ghouls, Early Bird guests were able to enjoy a VIP area, which contained a candy bar in addition to the aforementioned decorations.
House of Horror also marked the first large-scale event to be catered by Ludo and Lolo’s Crêperie, the latest late night food source to hit St Andrews. The crepes, priced at a reasonable £3, remained in high demand until the night’s end, satisfying guests in ways that Courtyard Cafe never could. We can hopefully look for these warm parcels of chocolatey delight at many more Kinkell events to come!
A special mention must also go to the dancefloor layout: Rather than placing the DJs on the centre stage, a smaller stand was erected in the middle of the main room. This allowed for a more concentrated dance area, particularly as the night wore on and the guests grew weary. The musical lineup made good use of this unconventional stage: Teresa St Goar, Matt Payne, Content, .Nips, and TEA have never disappointed, and tonight was no exception. Ahmed Shareefy’s set, in particular, was met with acclaim from the crowd, as were the opening mixes from James Peel and Ferdinand Vermersch.
All that being said, the low attendance rate marred an otherwise enjoyable night. Set during a week dominated by deadlines, House of Horror often felt more “house party” than “Kinkell bash.” In this regard, it was an excellent introduction to the venue, as it allowed freshers to find their bearings before Welly Ball in November. Now re-established as a reputable brand, HoH will presumably return next year on a much grander scale.