EDITOR’S NOTE: The recently completed Migration Fest in Olympia, Washington, jointly organized by 20 Buck Spin and Gilead Media, was filled with memorable highlights, but perhaps the greatest of all was the first live performance by Panopticon, which closed the fest’s second night.
In a 90-minute set that cut across a broad swath of Panopticon’s albums, Austin Lunn was joined on-stage by drummer Ray Capizzo (Falls of Rauros), bassist Andy Klokow (who also performed live with Obsequiae), and guitarist Jake Quittschreiber (Circadian Ritual). The time seemed to fly by, and left an enthusiastic audience roaring their appreciation and their thanks. (We have five videos from that set, along with a more extensive review, here.)
And now we want to share another expression of gratitude, this time a thank-you letter from Austin Lunn himself to everyone who became a part of Migration Fest — and in this letter he discloses plans for the next Panopticon album as well as future live performances:
A quick note concerning our performance at Migration Fest:
After returning home and resuming my normal life in my quiet home in rural central Minnesota, I have taken a bit of time to process the events at Migration Fest and just wanted to share some of the thoughts I have had with anyone who might be interested in reading them.
Playing live was certainly not something I thought I’d ever do… really, the only times I had ever indulged the thought was in killing time on a long bike ride to work when I lived in Louisville or something like that… kind of a laughable, goofy fantasy or train of thought that leads to nowhere.
When it all came together over the past nine months I was surprised. I had to re-learn all of the songs, re-write them all for 4 members, condensing and reducing guitar parts, everyone in the band had to learn their parts, and then after that we had to see if it felt right to play together in the first place.
As it turns out, the four of us really like to play music together and this ended up being a lot of fun. Even if we hadn’t played a show, it was still fun to play with three dear friends, Andy, Ray, and Jake, and I am really honored to have had this opportunity.
As for the show: I had no idea how we would be received or that we would be supported. I speak for all 4 of us when I say that we felt so thankful for the kindness and enthusiasm that we experienced from others, and it is a memory I will cherish ’til my last breath.
When I got home, I went right back to the brewery… kegging beer, cleaning floors… typical stuff. If there had been anyone else in the brew house they might have thought I was insane because I was listening to black metal records and scrubbing the floors and laughing to myself, grinning like an idiot just replaying the memories of the fest over and over in my head. All the amazing people I met, the special friends I seldom see due to our busy lives and distances, the amazing bands I got to see play, the great beer I drank at Three Magnets… and of course, the honor of getting to perform to so many wonderful people.
This experience was better and more meaningful to me than any musical event I could have ever dreamed up in my wildest imagination. All I can say is that I have such tremendous gratitude to all of you folks, to Andy, Jake, and Ray, to Adam and Dave… to the people to travelled insane distances ( hey Australian guys! thanks again!)… to all of the festival staff… I feel a debt of gratitude that I could never even begin to repay, so all I can do is say thank you as many times as I can. Thank you.
To those that couldn’t make the show, it will NOT be the last. We will play at the Triple Rock with our friends in Obsequiae and False this September before heading to Sweden for both days of Höst fest, which will be a joy for us. After that, there won’t be any more shows for 2016. The plan is to continue writing demos for the next record, and by late January I will begin recording. Panopticon will always remain a recorded solo project (of course with guest appearances by friends on occasion).
After the album is complete we will begin rehearsals and planning for a small handful of shows in 2017. When and where remains to be seen. The live version of Panopticon will never be a touring band due to all of our commitments and families. The guys all have bands of their own as well, and I certainly don’t want to get in the way of that and I don’t want to be away from my wife and sons for any extended period of time.
Again, I cannot express enough how thankful I was for this experience. Thank you to each person who took time out of their day to talk to me, drink a beer with me, to everyone who bought merch, who came to the show, who screamed the lyrics with me, who headbanged and shook their fists… all of this meant the world to us and we are forever grateful.