By Jim Schutze
By Rachel Watts
By Lauren Drewes Daniels
By Anna Merlan
By Lee Escobedo
By Alice Laussade
By Scott Reitz
The KDGE-102.1 FM EdgeFest, age 16, a once-promising showcase of quasi-independent "alternative," "modern" and "new" rock acts, died on April 15 at Pizza Hut Park in Frisco, following a courageous battle with cultural relevance.
The EdgeFest premiered in 1992 with interesting and inventive bands such as the Sugarcubes and Charlatans UK, giving hope to the possibility that a large-scale concert could vie for big box-office revenue and commercial appeal while maintaining a certain level of artistic integrity. With the inclusion of acts such as Modern English and Dramarama—and taking into account that it was not 1984—it was obvious that such a lofty goal would not be fully achieved in the concert's inaugural year.
The following year saw Dinosaur Jr. and the Tragically Hip command the stage, playing songs that were well-written and had unique creative significance. The year after, Crowded House and Violent Femmes would attempt to contribute some semblance of dignity to the EdgeFest proceedings, despite having to share a stage with groups such as Crash Test Dummies, Material Issue, Dig and Eve's Plumb.
Merely a few years old, EdgeFest began to give a revolving forum to forgettable one-hit wonders: your Letters to Cleos, your Sponges, your Veruca Salts and so forth. For EdgeFest 9, bands such as Everclear, 311 and the Might, Mighty Bosstones were part of a lineup that might have been considered "edgy" had it been assembled 5 years prior to its actual staging in the spring of 2000. By this time even the most steadfast of supporters began to worry about the event's failing health, accentuated by a devastating case of Alzheimer's that made it impossible for EdgeFest to have any idea what year it was existing in.
By 2003 groups like Maroon 5, Evanescence, Good Charlotte and All-American Rejects appeared to be breathing new life into EdgeFest's withered, gray lungs. Upon immediate retrospect, experts and scientists would find that such a revival of acceptable tastes was a phantom prospect, an illusion created by the fact that these bands were at least relatively current, if not at all musically interesting.
EdgeFest finally succumbed to complete and total suckiness earlier this year when the 2007 lineup—including the Killers, My Chemical Romance and A.F.I.—was formally announced. Family members request that in lieu of donations, mourners buy tickets to a show that is actually worth a good goddamn.