Independent musicians seem to remain hopeful that the festival can change people's minds as well. Battick says he hopes the ticket sales and turnout can let people know there is an audience for music of all types in Central Maine — not just pop and country.

Already under way, the KahBang Kickoff and KahBang @ Night performances brought a slew of original performances to shake things up in the city. The eclectic Kickoff show inside Bangor's historic Brick Church featured Seattle bands Hey Marseilles and Ravenna Woods, Minneapolis duo Bella Ruse, and local electro-pop youngsters Autopirate!. Thom Cosgrove, who has been covering the events for the online publication the Maine Observer, as well as DJing in some KahBang @ Night events, says he's already seeing bands get more exposure than they are used to. While he will DJ routinely, he got to spin a set at a club he normally wouldn't have been able to thanks to KahBang. Likewise, he says events taking place later in the week, such as a six-band lineup at one particular bar, are unheard of most of the time.

The festival may only stretch just more than a week, but change has to start somewhere. And perhaps a thriving scene is closer than it may seem.

Vocalist/guitarist Tom Tash (whose pop-punk band the Bay State just called it quits this summer) found a new following of youngsters when he moved back to Bangor, playing at last year's KahBang, as well as a couple benefit shows. No longer struggling to attract all-ages audiences in Portland, he was playing to enthusiastic crowds of hundreds in Bangor. That's proof in his mind that the excitement and desire for music exists in Bangor but fans have very few places to see it throughout the year — save for events like KahBang.

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