Sunday at Bumbershoot 2008

On the fence for Kathleen Edwards

On the fence for Kathleen Edwards

I came into Bumbershoot Sunday thinking it was a bad lineup. The schedule that had already lost some major acts and didn’t seem to have any theme or reason to it. And the evening headliner was… Stone Temple Pilots? Who were big when I was in college? What, Bumbershoot is trying to cash in on Gen X nostalgia now? Can we look forward to the Tiffany/NKOTB stadium show next year?

But then came the Saturday Knights and the Black Keys. The Saturday Knights, as mentioned earlier, were last minute filler for the green stage. And they absolutely killed. It’s been a long time since I’d seen a hip-hop group who were actually into having fun and getting the crowd pogoing. And they pogoed. So did the photographers in the front pit (which was kinda funny to watch with their big rigs bounding and them slamming into each other). Tilson and Barfly trading rhymes, DJ Suspence managing two turntables and a bunch of instruments, and a live band — with a horn section! A horn section! Samantha has been trumpeting these guys for years now, and Samantha was right. (There you go, dear, now you can print it out and pull it out any time you feel otherwise.)

The Black Keys, meanwhile, I’d never really gotten into live, because they were just a wall of cacophony in small clubs. But, lo and behold, they’re a stadium band. And they were big, loud, and incredible, especially considering they were still just a duo with a fuzzbox. Funny, too, that it drew what looked like a jam band crowd (ballcaps and beach balls everywhere) even though I’ve never seen them as a jam band. Of course, they could have been there for Stone Temple Pilots.

Other things:

  • The highest concentration of Metbloggers at any one show yesterday turned out to be Kathleen Edwards’ mural stage set. Considering the highly disparate tastes in music among the group, that was a bit of a shock. But she’s still adorable in her Canadian ways.
  • I caught the first part of Sound Of Young America Live, which apparently was the least packed of all the comedy shows, all of which were increasingly hard to get into during the day.
  • The music was one attraction, but there were big crowds not only for the half-pipe but for the Guitar Hero booth and KISW’s booth with Guitar Hero.
  • Ravens and Chimes are listed as a band that formed at NYU. And it was obvious, though they were adorable and didn’t show a lot of elitist school cred onstage, just in their lyrics.
  • My last show of the night was Tapes ‘n Tapes, and they sounded like… Tapes ‘n Tapes. They were good, but unfortunately, some of these alterna-bands the kids are into nowadays are starting to blend together. You see one drummer in Oxford shirt and 50s dad glasses, you’ve seen them all.
  • I didn’t catch a lot of Final Fantasy, but that was an interesting crowd. Old, young, people sitting on blankets like it was a picnic spread, people passing the hash pipe, looking extremely serious and thoughtful the entire time. Owen Pallett’s music is serious and thoughtful, of course, but in a day filled with hard blues, pogoing hip-hop, and slightly dramatic and twee college pop, it was a surprise to see it. But that’s the thing about Bumbershoot, isn’t it? All kinds of music for all kinds of people.

And memo to the guys smoking weed on Mercer yesterday evening: Yes, it’s a low priority for the cops to bust you, and yes, this is a 420-friendly town, but honestly, walking down a busy street crowded with pedestrians and openly toking? That’s a little gauche.

And by the time you’d made into the Center, stood in line for Stone Temple Pilots, picked up your great seats, and been happy in your bakedness… you’d be hungry. And you’d have to find food vendors. Which are all outside the stadium. Meaning you just lost your place on the stadium floor. Think before you get high next time, people.

2 Comments so far

  1. josh on September 2nd, 2008 @ 12:49 am

    you’re right about the lineup. going in, I was not very excited about it but I managed to spend the whole day running around seeing stuff and being more than pleasantly surprised at most of it.

  2. jameson on September 2nd, 2008 @ 8:52 am

    Being high on the floor is more important than eating.

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