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Sunday, December 03, 2023
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The Fray Frolics at Alumni

Kanye West, Nirvana, and The All American Rejects. These are just a few of the headliners of fests past. Thursday night, The Fray joined their ranks as they rocked the crowd at Alumni Arena for this year's Fallfest.

This year the Student Association brought The Fray, The White Panda, and 2 AM Club. Compared to years past, this year's turn out for the concert was noticeably less, according to a few members of the crowd. By time of publication, SA was not able to produce the attendance numbers.

Christian rockers The Fray dazzled the crowd for just over an hour. During the deeper tracks, the crowd was stagnant, but when the band got to their hits the crowd responded with a deafening sing along.

While the members cite different artists as their influence, they all enjoy a similar taste in music.

"Probably Paula Abdul [influenced me the most]," said guitarist Dave Welsh. "She defined my Stage presence."

"I personally like J.Lo," said drummer Ben Wysocki. "I think she made me want to be in a band. She made me want to write songs. She is an amazing song writer."

The Fray showcased its pop-rock sound to an adoring crowd. The band took the opportunity to try out some new material from its forthcoming album, which is due out early next year.

"There is a song about a road trip [on the new album]," Wysocki said. "There is a song about being lost at sea. There is a lullaby. There is a big rock song. There is a song with a Hurdy Gurdy. And then there is ‘Heartbeat.' And then you usually want to turn it up to like 9 or 10."

As The Fray left the stage before the encore, half of the crowd vacated the arena. The band had people running back down the aisle to catch one last song.

The White Panda mixed pop hits to get the crowd dancing before The Fray. Wearing Panda masks, the duo sliced up some catchy mashups to the delight of the crowd.

The band stood behind a barrier for a majority of the set, taking an occasional break to come closer to the crowd and try to get them more into it.

The White Panda seemed to get the best reaction from the crowd. The crowd danced and sang along to its favorite pop songs.

The opening band, 2 AM Club, brought a touch of sunny So-Cal to the stage. The band's lighthearted sound is reminiscent of Maroon 5.

While portions of the campus responded with contempt, the majority of people enjoyed the concert.

"I really liked The Fray," said Tyler Gagliardi, a junior human services major. "They had really nice sound, the guitar was great. It reminded me of U2 kind of. 2 AM Club definitely had a good sound. I really liked the vocals…Both bands were really good and put on a good show and had a good sound. It is a little slow for me, I like to get amped up, but I really enjoyed it."

While the crowd generally had a good time, there were people that still were not impressed with SA's choice for Fallfest.

"I would go see Fallfest every year," said Michael Babala, a senior aerospace and mechanical engineering major. "If concerts stay like this I won't go to any other concerts the rest of the year."




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