Southern California punk rockers Sugarcult gave new meaning to the saying “bring down the house” in Detroit on Wednesday when their performance at St. Andrew’s Hall was cut short because the floor was caving in. Just after performing their third song and latest single, “Bouncing Off the Walls,” Sugarcult were ordered to halt their set when a manager in the room below the club noticed the ceiling caving in as concertgoers, well, bounced off the walls.
St. Andrew’s Hall, a historic building that has hosted the likes of Nirvana and Nine Inch Nails, was evacuated and the concert was canceled.
Though Mest and headliners Unwritten Law didn’t get a chance to take the stage, the music did not end.
To appease the concertgoers filling the street outside the club, Sugarcult singer Tim Pagnotta, Mest singer Tony Lovato and Unwritten Law singer Scott Russo climbed on top of a U-Haul trailer and performed an impromptu acoustic set that included a song from each of the bands.
Wednesday was “definitely a night to remember,” Sugarcult guitarist Marko 72 said. “It could have been a total disaster, but it turned out to be something pretty cool. When I was a kid, if something like that happened at a show, there would have been broken glass and people leaving on stretchers. I was a little worried kids would get out of control. We got on the mic and Tim made light of it. He said, ‘You guys need to do sit-ups, you’re too heavy for this.’ ”
The bands also helped calm the crowd by handing out stickers and CD samplers during the acoustic performances, which came to an end when police peacefully cleared the assembly.
“People were crowd-surfing out on the street. It was pretty rad, almost like a show,” Marko 72 said. “They were singing along, it was really cool. Oddly enough, it was our second-biggest merch [sales] night ever. I guess the secret to success is to get on and off the stage in 15 minutes. Pretty crazy, man. Detroit rock city!”
Management for St. Andrews Hall was not available for comment. Marko 72 said the bands were talking about returning to Detroit to play a free show next month.
Unwritten Law, Mest and Sugarcult continued their tour Thursday in Chicago and perform at the Rave in Milwaukee on Friday (March 8).