We all have those places where we really like to go to hang out with friends or enjoy a good evening. With the metal music scene, it is no different. Most of us have one or two certain bars or venues we like to go see shows at, and the Midwest has an ample number of them to choose from. Being from Indiana, the Midwest Metal Chicks are pretty much in a central location and have our pick of some amazing places to go see shows from local bars and pubs to massive arenas and outdoor theaters. But this month, we are going to focus on one specific “venue” which has recently become a favorite for us.
This place is called The Doom Room. Its located in North-Central Indiana in Lafayette and it is unlike any other venue in the entire state. I would even dare say unlike any other in all of the Midwest. It is a house just outside of town with no neighbors and plenty of room to roam around, enjoy a bonfire, or relax in the oh so comfortable couch circle outside under a big old oak tree. If you ever went to house parties in your younger years, this place will really take you back. Its open and free and the people you will run into are sure to be called friend before the end of your night. Typically, the guys have it set up for two stages, one in the garage and one in the basement. Both the house and the garage are full of merch and memorabilia and it’s very cool to look at as you’re waiting to use the restroom or venturing down to the basement.
Nick Maxson, owner and booking agent for The Doom Room, was kind enough to do a short interview with us via email, so here is a little more insight for all of you out there.
Midwest Metal Chicks: How and When did The Doom Room get started?
Nick Maxon: The Doom Room inherited the Lafayette metal family from the Hilltop Fortress is 2013. After the Fortress’ proprietors (Famous Ray & Gooch) moved out, the drummer in a band I was in at the time and I decided we would try to carry on the tradition at the house I was living at in the form of basement shows. After a few shows at the house, we did an all-day event at a local record shop (JL Records) with a bunch of bands to see if we could pull off doing shows outside the basement (spoiler, it went well). We now do a steady mix of shows at the house, Jerilee’s Pub (the cool uncle of Lafayette metal for over decade), Carnahan Hall, and Lafayette Theater.
MWMC: What’s the most memorable show that the Doom Room put on and why?
NM: The fun thing about this question is how hard it is to pick, as we somewhat pride ourselves on always trying to find new ways to present the bands. The first big attempt was the record store show. The second attempt was the Tree Stage. We built a bunch of 4×8 ft plywood platforms and stuck ’em out around a tree in the backyard, threw a bunch of lights in the branches, and BOOM: Tree Stage. We thought we were pretty cool. Third idea and definitely my favorite was the Cage Stage/Field Day. We took a bunch of work fence (looked like a giant dog kennel) and built a cage, where we then had bands play. There was enough room for 15-20 people to mosh inside the cage with the band, which got pretty wild. Of the 120-150 at the show, about 50 people broke into teams, and participated in drinking/physical activities (We called it the Alcoholympics). We made trophies for the winners and everything, though we had a little bit too much fun and never really handed them out (For the record, I’m pretty sure Alestorm won).
MWMC: What’s the most wacky thing that has happened at a Doom Room show?
NM: I’m sure that I’m totally unaware of the wackiest (or most perverse) thing that has transpired. But, a few top picks would be that time a band called Pink Mass whipped and choked each other while playing (a lot of people left for that), the weird orgy that broke out between a bunch of punks in the garage, and pretty much any of the many times we’ve tried to sing the Bard’s Song as a group.
MWMC: What is the one thing a first time visitor to The Doom Room should know?
NM: Anybody and everybody here is going to be your friend, whether you want them to be or not. Also, BYOB.
MWMC: What’s is in the future for The Doom Room?
NM: We’re celebrating our 100th show in February 2017 at a very cool location with a lot of really cool bands. We’ll continue to book any band that is looking to play in Lafayette and book super tight events as often as we can. Prominent members of the team are hoping to launch a brewery in the next year or two, which will give us the legs to continue having way too much fun for a long time to come.
So there is it ladies and gents. If you are ever looking for a good time with some great people, both can be found at The Doom Room. Just remember to bring your own booze and have a good time. Ya never know, maybe next time you will run into a couple of the Midwest Metal Chicks there and we can show you how to really throw down. For updates on The Doom Room and shows visit them @ https://www.facebook.com/DoomRoomLafayette/ or http://doomroomlafayette.com.
A BIG thank you to Nick for the opportunity to take up some of your time and ask a few questions and to anyone else who helps you put on the shows at The Doom Room. Guys like you keep the local metal scene alive and thrashing!