Monster bash

By Kelly Johnson

Reggae. Giant bat costumes. Spooky drums and bass. Countless Catholic school girls.

Zombie dance parties are not for the closed-minded.

On Halloween, more than 100 freaks and ghouls finally got their chance to cut a rug at Otto’s, 118 E. Lincoln Highway, during the “Zombie Dance Party.” Billed as “DeKalb’s premier Halloween superparty,” the night showcased an eclectic mix of sounds from reggae and ska-influenced bands to a DJ’s thumping house music.

“The night is not so much a zombie dance party,” organizer Jim Kidonakis said, “as it is the questionably alive or dead and the moving wretched.”

Kidonakis originally congregated this amalgamation of gore and beats to premiere his animated monster film “Chawalaleng.” However, as deadline approached, the final product was still in production.

“We are still going to get it moving eventually,” Kidonakis said of the film.

The night careened on, however, with dedication to fulfill its objectives: fun and dancing.

“I wanted to have a big party and mix it up with live music and electronics,” Kidonakis said.

Four Star Flag was the first band to entertain the moving wretched with its ska and punk-influenced sound. The five-piece group was fairly well-received, utilizing the trumpet and saxophone as a foundation to back its emphasis on upbeat rhythm.

Next came crowd-pleasers The Swills. With Kidonakis on drums, the band glided through original mellow numbers as well as covers of Sublime and 311. As a tribute to the evening’s festivities, they resurrected the theme from “The Munsters.”

“Thanks for being kind,” lead singer and guitarist Ryan Bennett said after the applause.

For the rest of the night, Otto’s turned into the nightclub from hell. DJ Roll took the stage as the lights dropped and a red dim light fell upon the stage.

Without breaking, Nick Holm took over the turntables and brought the night to a close.

“I hoped we could have showed the movie,” Kidonakis said, “but I’m happy with the turnout. Be on the lookout for ‘Chawalaleng’ at a later date.”