DJ Tantrum of Panic! Some years back, Chrystena Loring stumbled across a CD by Pulp and loved it. Pulp led her to Blur, Blur led her to others and her interest in Brit pop, emo and indie rock snowballed from there. “There was nobody spinning the kind of music that I want to hear, and nobody spinning the kind of music that there’s a need for,” she said.
So at that point, DJ Tantrum was born, spinning for a few months at smaller gigs like house parties and guest spots at ’80s and Beyond. Then she leapt into DJing and promoting full force, partnering with DJ Sarah Vain for the weekly Panic! events every Tuesday at Club Kameleon, 120 E. Market St. It’s a generally relaxed night of eclectic tunes that occasionally revels in its own obscurity.
“The idea was to give a forum to music that hasn’t been played in clubs in Indianapolis,” Tantrum said. “Nobody plays indie rock or even emo. We’re trying to fill the gap. There’s a Goth night, there’s an electroclash night, there’s a punk night, but the people that listen to indie rock and Brit pop and emo are left out of the mix. It’s music that you don’t find in Indianapolis.”
In a few weeks, Panic! — named for a song by the Smiths — has come to attract a small but loyal following.
“I was extremely scared. I didn’t know if there would be an audience for this type of music in Indianapolis,” Tantrum said. “It’s for people that are open to cross-genres in music. It’s great to get people that are open to different kinds of music and will listen to anything from Brit pop to electroclash, indie rock, Goth, whatever.”
In the meantime, she’s been quickly learning what she can about the art of DJing. “I’m just trying to have fun. I don’t have any expectations or goals. I’m just watching and learning, observing people as much as I can,” Tantrum said. “I’ve learned not to play solely what you want to hear. And you can’t always play stuff only you have heard of. People want to hear something familiar. But you have to throw in new stuff, otherwise people will never evolve.”