Students and performers braved the cold for the Campus Activities Board’s (CAB) annual Modstock festival on Thursday to celebrate the last day of classes. Modstock 2019 kicked off with student performer Isobel Knight who was followed by ayokay, Jeremy Zucker, and Chelsea Cutler—who donned a BC hockey jersey during her headline performance.
The cold, rainy afternoon led to a low turnout for the beginning of the event. Along with musical performances, the event featured a Volkswagen Bus photo booth, an airbrush tattoo stand, and free bubbles. Throughout the evening, there was a heavy mist in the air, but it did not dull the spirits of the attendees or the performers.
Knight, the winner of this year’s BC’s Best, was first to perform. During the singer’s original set, her delicate vocals and acoustic guitar resonated with students in the Mod Lot. The overall crowd favorite was her song “Playing It Cool,” a heartbroken track from her EP Talking to Myself.
The Mod Lot continued to slowly fill with high-energy students as ayokay took the stage. His set was filled with airy electronic beats and steady bass hits. “Stay With Me,” a track featuring the following act, got the crowd warmed up. As people tricked on to the lot, Ayokay called on the BC crowd to come to the stage and dance with him. He concluded his set with his 2016 hit single “Kings of Summer,” which features Quinn XCII, and had the crowd jumping and singing along to the lyrics.
Student turnout noticeably increased in the lead-up to Zucker’s performance. Although the set started with some technical difficulties, Zucker elevated the crowd’s energy quickly with the uplifting “Keep My Head Afloat” from his 2017 album Motions. He then transitioned into a few emotional songs, including “end” and “comethru,” before shouting out all of the seniors in the audience and telling them to “move to LA where it’s warm.”
Zucker explained that he “came all the way from New Jersey,” which drew many cheers from the crowd. As his performance wound down, Zucker played his popular hit “all the kids are depressed,” during which he hopped off of the stage into the crowd for a moment. The audience sang along as the set ended with “talk is overrated,” a collaboration with blackbear.
The crowd’s energy stayed high amid the gloomy weather with classics like “Sweet Caroline” playing from the speakers between sets. Modstock took an inexplicably long pause prior to the headliner’s set, but as Cutler finally took the stage, the crowd’s energy reached its peak.
Although Cutler herself noted to the audience that she “has a lot of sad songs,” she played mostly powerful electronic pop hits, like “Love You More” and “You Make Me,” which were crowd favorites along with the nostalgic “Sixteen.” As the audience’s energy started to fade with the tail end of Modstock, Cutler ended her set with “The Reason,” one of her most popular songs off her 2018 album Sleeping With Roses.
Because CAB faced criticism for its controversial choice of B.o.B as the Modstock 2018 performer last spring, the organization’s decision announcing the artists for this year’s rendition was highly anticipated. Although some students expressed discontent with the selection of three lesser-known performers for Modstock 2019, energy gradually rose throughout Thursday evening, and students came to embrace the concert, even in 45-degree weather.
Featured Image by Maggie DiPatri / Heights Editor