Holy Shit Day 2 Review! Bumbershoot Music Festival

Well, let’s just say if Bumbershoot was a fight club, Day 2 like totally kicked Day 1’s ass. But let’s not talk about Bumbershoot Fight Club (remember Rule #1). We saw easily one of the best performances of the day on the smallest stage, yet found ourselves at the biggest stage for most of the evening. Not only were all the bands we saw great in their own way on Sunday, we were also there to witness the now legendary Courtney Love/Hole Interview/End Session for 107.7  Yeah, today was a good day….

Fences – KEXP Secret Music Lounge

Heavily tattooed Seattle singer-songwriter Christopher Mansfield (aka Fences) is set to release his highly anticipated debut album later this month. Although laden with sorrowful lyrics about the tragic tales of love and relationships gone bad, Mansfield’s wonderful voice just can’t help but elevate the mood of his music to “somewhat optimistic”. And while some musicians labor over creating great music, others just can’t help themselves; that certainly seems to be the case for Chris Mansfield. Taking queues from his self-released Ultimate Puke EP and turning it into a full-length album was partly the vision of producer Sara Quin (of Tegan & Sara) who took the challenge of working with a gifted and independent musician like Mansfield and made his music absolutely come alive. Did I already say I had a favorite 2nd performance of the day? OK, this would be like 1.5 then. Way to knock it out of the park Chris! – jason

*You can also see my intro for Fences on the KEXP Blog: http://blog.kexp.org/blog/2010/09/05/bumbershoot-music-lounge-preview-fences/

David Bazan – KEXP Music Lounge

Many of you likely caught David Bazan and gang at their 4:00 set at the Broad Street Stage, however we caught them earlier for an intimate live “in-studio” performance at the KEXP secret stage. We must say, Bazan’s tunes, which are known for their hopelessly spiritual themes about falling from grace, are sounding much more buoyant these days. The band of beards gave a nod to Bazan’s former project, Pedro the Lion, while also playing a solid selection from his new solo album. Bazan also looked quite comfortable in the smaller setting, which we assume is due to his recent “living room” shows – a loophole to circumnavigate his record label’s policies about the frequency of touring. – karalee

*Sorry to bump in here Karalee, but I just had to mention that with Bazan and his band fully amplified, this was hands-down my favorite performance of the day.  – jason

Surfer Blood – KEXP Music Lounge

Surfer Blood isn’t due to play Bumbershoot until tomorrow afternoon, however we got a sneak peek at their set at the KEXP stage today. Fresh-faced youngsters hailing from Palm Beach, FL, Surfer Blood is making a splash in the surf-pop circuit. Even though most of the band members don’t look like they need to shave yet, they offer surprisingly advanced, mildly gritty pop songs with fun names like “Floating Vibes,” “Slow Jabroni” and “Catholic Pagans.” This is a band that should not be underestimated because of their age – their album Astro Coast made it on the Billboard 200 chart, peaking at a rather impressive 124. – karalee

*You can also read Jason’s KEXP Blog Intro for Surfer Blood here: http://blog.kexp.org/blog/2010/09/05/bumbershoot-music-lounge-surfer-blood/

The Lonely H – EMP/Sky Church (PHOTO SET)

Unnatural Helpers – Broad Street Stage (PHOTO SET)

Hey Marseilles – Broad Street Stage

Hey Marseilles is Seattle’s new chamber-pop darling, and if you tried to get to their set, you could certainly tell. The crowd at the Broad Street Stage was massive, stretching from the Fischer Plaza to the IMAX dome, and just happened to be the largest crowd for which Hey Marseilles has performed. Their arresting instrumentation and a sound that blends Eastern European folk and South American sambas had everyone on their feet, clapping and cha-chaing through the grass. The group ended their set with their single (and fan favorite), “Rio,” which was also recently featured on the homepage of YouTube. We predict some serious national traction for the fellows of Hey Marseilles. – karalee

Atercopelados – KEXP Music Lounge

Undeniably the toughest band name to pronounce at Bumbershoot this year ‒ Aterciopelados (translated as “The Velvety Ones”) are one of the biggest bands to come out of Colombia. Signed to the infamous Nacional Records, their music is Latin-infused, using traditional llanera rhythms and flamenco-bolero sounds. Although relatively unknown here in the States, Aterciopelados albums have received countless Latin Grammy award nominations and brought them tons of loyal followers, an amazing feat considering their deliberate attempt to create something completely different for each album. Although I’m not really a fan of this type of music at all really, I’d say I nailed it when I said these are the bands who produce the best performances at the KEXP Music Lounge. They certainly didn’t disappoint, they were the ONLY band of the day that got a standing ovation. This was probably my 2nd favorite performance of the day. – jason

*You can also see my intro for Atercopelados on the KEXP Blog: http://blog.kexp.org/blog/2010/09/05/bumbershoot-music-lounge-aterciopelados/

Horse Feathers – KEXP Music Lounge

Yet another band you probably saw during their main set on the Starbucks Stage, Horse Feathers stopped by the KEXP secret stage for the most calming set of the day. Lead singer Justin Ringle’s voice is absolutely mesmerizing and complemented by beautiful stringwork. The band overall has a knack for delicately balanced vocal harmonies and haunting crescendos. The highlight of the set was their final song, “Curs in the Weeds,” from their 2008 record House With No Home. – karalee

*You can also read Jason’s KEXP Blog Intro for Horse Feathers here: http://blog.kexp.org/blog/2010/09/05/bumbershoot-music-lounge-preview-horse-feathers/

Hole – Secret End Session/Interview

Yes, we were really this close to Courtney Love….

Wow, where do I even begin to explain the hour of rambling run-on thoughts and sentences we just heard. We’re sure you’ll see just about every other journalist writing about this one since they were all there, but let’s just say we got a frighteningly close look at the inner workings of Courtney Love. We’ll have much more about this in the coming days, but in the meantime, here’s a few random things she discussed:

– Kurt’s Penis, or as she referred to it “Kurt Peen”

– These Seattle Fucks. Fucks in Seattle

– Charles Cross was a heavy topic of her discussion since he was in the crowd (I bet he is re-thinking that decision…)

– Daughter Frances owns 37% of the rights to In Utero

– The Nirvana and Jimi Hendrix estates were a heavy topic of discussion

– Record label Cherry Forever.

– It costs about $46,00 a month just to be Courtney Love

– Frances boyfriend/fiance Matt is a UCLA Film Major

– Her lawsuit with her daughter

– Brittney Spears Rolling Stone 2008 article

– She was going shopping here: http://isadoras.com/

*Keep tuned here for much, much more to follow…..

Rise Against – Main Stage

We were lucky enough to be up close for the first big rock act of the day – Chicago’s Rise Against. As a punk rock purist and Hardcore snob, there’s obvious reasons I should hate this band, I just have some history with Fat Wreck and  really like bands like Face to Face so the hell with it. If anything, this was the the first band of the day that really got the crowd moving, and all the kids (especially the straight-edged ones) were eating this shit up. It’s always cool to see huge crowds moving in unison like that. As the bodies started flying to the front it always amazes me it’s the tiny teenage girls who get pushed up first, never fails. Even the photo pit was a crazy place to be, but somehow our photog Lori escaped unharmed. The kids may love Rise Against, but I like my punk rock in basements. I guess even the old guys gotta make money sometime… – jason

Hole – Main Stage

O.K. I’ll be the first one to admit it, I was predicting a train-wreck. Maybe I was even there to watch it (oh admit it, you were too..). Hell, after her rambling non-sensical End Session Interview just a few hours earlier, I wasn’t even sure she’d show up to play on the Main Stage (she threatened not to). After just two songs though, I just couldn’t help rooting for Courtney Love. When she kicked into “Skinny Little Bitch” with all the fog going and the princess crown on her head, that just sounded so fucking rock star. It appears that when she wants to, Courtney still has just enough skill and swagger to pull it all together for a big time show. Love or hate Courtney, you have to respect she came to Seattle, put herself out there for everyone to poke at, and she ended up playing her heart out to a crowd who didn’t boo her, but adored her. After the show, every comment I heard in the press room was basically “wow, she sounded good”. Now give the woman some god-damned respect Seattle! – jason

Weezer – Main Stage

We were hesitant to see Weezer. We went in with low expectations. But we’ll be the first to admit it – they blew our socks off. We fell in love with Weezer when we were in high school, so we felt a bit of nostalgic obligation to see a few of their songs, but before we knew it, we were cheering for an encore. Frontman River Cuomo and his band certainly know how to play a festival – they focused on their well-known hits from the Blue Album, Pinkerton and the Green Album, with a few of their newer (and not as amazing) songs sprinkled in. Rivers even apologized after playing one of the bands new songs, “Memories,” which fans can purchase when the new album Hurley comes out later this month. And speaking of Rivers, he is as energetic and inclusive as ever, climbing the stage scaffolding and running through the stadium seats, giving a bunch of lucky fans a very unexpected front row seat. The band also incited a dance party with a mashup of MGMT’s “Children” and Lady Gaga’s “Poker Face.” – karalee


~ by clickdagger on September 6, 2010.

One Response to “Holy Shit Day 2 Review! Bumbershoot Music Festival”

  1. “Memories” sucks almost as badly as Courtney Love.

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