Sasquatch 2011 Summary:
1. LiveNation Festival – Get your “ticket for wristband” tent fixed. 4 interns taking tickets on Friday night at a broken down banquet table under a crappy tent? What are you, Warped Tour 1996? Line was egregious.
2. Don’t move the water station every effing day making us all hunt down where the Nalgene refill area is. Just stupid.
3 . Feel free to open ALL of the EXIT gates after the last show. I understand the entrance gates, but seriously. Do you have to hold us up from returning to the bedlam that is dirty parking lot tent camping?
4. The Elephant ears may be delicious, but those things are like eating 5 star thai food and drinking tequila straight from the bottle (just like the lead singer of Guided by Voices) – Toxic at best, lethal at best. They will kill children.
5. Open up the back of the stage for the view. That was disappointing. Back scrim was up for all the shows. Sunset was more beautiful from up the hill, looking backwards from the side stages.
Arrival day –
Powered through a 2 hour delay on Snoqualmie pass due to a motorcyclist running out of gas, and doing ‘the pee dance’ while refilling from a red can. Really Seattle? We can do better than this.
Foo Fighters –
Dave Grohl did his rock star thing. Entire band wore Flannel except Taylor the drummer. Dave called him out, and then they all proceeded to do the Foo Fighters thing. Which is to just rock out. Played some hits, played some old favorites, and dedicated “Fingernails” to all the old school fans who are “Old as Fuck” according to Dave. Indeed.
Missed “Against Me!”, but go get some of their stuff anyway. Not just an ironic tiger shirt either. Buy a record.
End arrival day. Nearly died of exposure in the tent that night.
Dinner was beer.
Day 2 –
Breakfast consisted of Egg-sausage-salsa breakfast burritos and Sierra Nevada. Top that off with coffee from a pan. Heaven. DJ Sammy remix style.
Pepper Rabbit –
Great show. Singer seems shy. Watch for these guys to make some waves. I bought the record on iTunes after watching their set. Solid.
Seattle Rock Orchestra-
I was ready to think Orchestral covers of Radio Head were lame. Not so. Very enjoyable, and the Orchestra part played really well.
Beautiful voices singing depressing country songs. Only Pasty Cline can make alcohol fueled domestic abuse sound more sexy than the Secret Sisters. Honest and heartfelt. Their original tunes were in the same vein, but fresh and a nice change of pace.
The Head and the Heart –
Awesome. I don’t remember much about them other than I liked it, and somebody barfed on my shoes as I was walking to watch them play. They had obviously had the Chicken Strip and Fries combo.
Local Natives –
Buy this now. Mustache not included, but you may grow one after listening to these guys. They made people stop as they walked by the stage. It was an awesome find.
Caught a nugget of their set. They obviously made it out of Spokane alive and well.
Canadians gone rock. Bass drum head had been fashioned into “Worf Parade” with a picture of, you guessed it, Worf on it. No complaints, awesome Rock.
Nothing says inappropriate workplace scotch swilling like Pink Martini. Surprise special guest vocalist Storm Large came on stage and out-sexied the entire venue. Eye poping, and I’m sure there were some Hipsters that traded in their neon wayfarers for black dress shoes and cufflinks when she finished. Her dress was blue. A perfect fit for the Martini’s set.
Iron and Wine –
Nerderific musical guitar masturbation. And beards. Lots of beards.
Matt & Kim –
How can a drummer be hot, play a set consisting of a tambourine, bass drum, snare drum and high hats possibly get better? By jumping into the crowd and doing a “booty dance” while suspended by fans. Oh, and that Matt guy can sing pretty good. Their positivity was so overwhelming that I saw a hipster wipe a tear from his eye-beard while smiling un-ironically. It was only for a moment, but it was a moment to last a lifetime.
The Glitch Mob –
WTF? It made me dance. I don’t dance. They somehow tricked me into physical activity that late in the day.
Death Cab For Cutie –
Besides being a personal favorite, they played new stuff and old stuff that was awesome. Gave a shout out to hometown Bellingham and were the only ones (I heard) give ‘Rock the Vote’ a stage mention. The kids are cool. Go buy Codes and Keys as soon as you can. I have nothing but good to say about these guys. Except Ben has hella long bangs.
End day two. Dinner was Scotch. Smartened up and went to bed with every piece of clothing I brought.
Day 3 –
Breakfast consisted of bacon. Lots of bacon. And bagels pan-face-fried in bacon grease, then slathered with Cream Cheese, then topped with crispy bacon. A delicious Sierra Nevada rounded out the potential heart problems and upped our risk to “just don’t go jogging”.
Smith Westerns –
Fader magazine said it very aptly:
“This shit is so good we had to learn all the words just so we could yell it at grumpy snitches on the subway.”
The Drums –
Get it. If you have a hankerin’ for two parts rock, one part John Hughes movie.
Fits & The Tantrums –
Man. I did not want to like these guys. I was missing the Moondoggies to see them. No complaints though. It was a straight up old school gospel soul revival meets David Bowie’s little brother minus the Jesus talk, and lots of cursing.
Tokyo Police Club –
Kids from Canada. That are awesome. This is not your French Canadian Fathers Maple Syrup.
Beach House –
Sexy, Sultry and makes the Cowboy Junkies sound upbeat, positive and downright danceable. Not for the utterly depressed, but for down-tempo make-out jams, put this on for your lady. Especially if you are a lady with a lady.
Cold War Kids –
Holy Crap! Something cool from Fullerton, CA! I dug these guys. No show, all go. Rocked it front to back. Even Hipsters had to like the ‘Cymbal on road case smashing’.
Flogging Molly –
Best.Irish.Dance.Party.of.the.weekend. I’m a fan of these guys from way back, so for all the haters out there, Eff off. Great live show. They drink Guiness from cans on stage, so I guess it’s OK to finally stop demanding that the Safeway on Greenwood get a Nitrous keg.
The Flaming Lips –
Can best be described as sentence word adjective, holy crap balloons and confetti. Look mom! My face is melting! Oh god please don’t, yes you did, wow those lights look like they belong in 2001 a space odyssey. Everyone smoke more hash. Wow, Wayne is in a bubble, and you can see through the drums. Tympani! Hot chicks dressed in Dorthy from Wizard of Oz costumes! Why does the bass player have a CCCP tshirt on? Why is there a massive eyeball on a screen and a naked animatronic hologram playing a cymbal?
Modes Mouse –
Even more angry because The Flaming Lips took, like, 10 stoner hours to set up and tear down. Then they battled their anger with more anger and pretty much rocked out. We decided to pick up, because we had a date with destiny. Unfortunately, that date started with me changing my shirt on the lawn, in the dark at the Gorge. I endured what can only be described as a random act of pouring beer on a shirtless chubby 40 year old white guy. This was not awesome. However, the date continued. I reeked of PBR, hash and a thousand crushed dreams but stumbled over to see…..
Ok. So when the Grim Reaper wakes up at the crack of 3pm and goes out into his garage, starts his 1968 Cadillac hearse, he thinks to himself this:
“When I have to go pick up the dudes in Daft Punk, but they cheat me, and I have to settle for the guitar player from Iron Maiden, but he somehow alludes me and that cheap bastard Rob Zombie scoots away AGAIN, and then I have to move on to take the mustaches, hair and capes from Rush’s “2112” record, what will be playing on my iPod?”
Answer – Ratatat. And it will be awesome. As quoted by one in the party “Shut up. Listen to this band”.
Returned to camp. Had Scotch in a artic windstorm. No one barfed on me today.
End of Day three. Used C&BW’s to clean up PBR mess and washed fleece in a dirty sink. Not my finest hour, but also not my worst. Dinner was PBR and Icelandic winds.
Day 4 –
Breakfast consisted of . Rounded it out with 3 PBR’s. I actually un-ironically brushed my teeth with PBR. You guessed it – Risk of Dysentery from campground water vs. brushing ones teeth with PBR is a no-contest, roundhouse kick to the face PBR win.
Old 97’s –
Love these cats. Lead singer had what we had for breakfast apparently. His speaking skills made him sound like, well, us.
Head Like a Kite –
Just go buy it. They wore Elvis suits and a huge panda danced on stage. You’re Welcome.
Guided By Voices-
Veteran rockers did veteran rock star things:
Terrible haircuts. Drank Tequilla straight from a bottle. Had 2 coolers of Miller Lite on stage. Couldn’t remember Lyrics. Chain smoked while singing backup vocals. Electrical taped the mic cord to the microphone to do that windmill thingy. They had loud as all hell stage monitors. And they played some songs nobody knew, and some songs that people knew. See also “Rolling Stones” for more rock star veteran moves. Wikipedia if you have to.
Yes. White Denim. Yes, they rocked. Do not hesitate to go give them money in exchange for music. You will high-five yourself after listening to these guys.
Macklemore & Ryan Lewis –
Q: What do two skinny white local kids know about Hip-Hop?
A: Shut up and listen to their music.
Sharon Jones & The Dap-Kings –
If Maceo Parker, James Brown and Eartha Kitt made sweet musical love and bore offspring that then went on to create (through magical means) the mythical man-child-beast that is Prince, and then Prince somehow got in a time machine, went back to the 40’s and found Lionel Hampton and Art Blakey then bundled them into a nugget of Higgs-Boson that gave birth to a Daughter, it would be Sharon Jones. Her band was incredible. She was incredible. A lovely old fashioned good time show with a band that could slap any ska band from the 90’s in the face and still not lose the groove.
Rodrigo Y Gabriela –
Remember the movie “Scott Pilgrim vs. The World”? Yes? When he had to learn how to guitar battle a bunch of his sweet lovers ex-boyfriends/Girlfriends? Yes? Well, before that movie, he sought out the Yoda of guitar-off mastery. That is Rodrigo. When the Zombie Apocalypse hits Mexico, and there is only one person left in the country, and that person has to guitar-to-death zombies by exploding their skulls with thumping mexi-flamenco-metal riffs and a hand that could slap the shit out of Rick James, it would be Gabriela. Put them together and you get a completely empty stage other than two people, two guitars, two water bottles and a literal metric ton of awesome. Do it now.
!!! (or Chick Chick Chick or Chk Chk Chk or IT DOESN’T MATTER THEY ARE AWESOME)
When was the last time you saw a 7’ male with a white guy afro in a jacket that lights up from the inside sing in a sailor hat in the middle of a dance party full of furry animals, dinosaurs and stoners while wearing blue denim short shorts and leather dock shoes? Well, that would be Memorial Monday for me. On top of that, his band holds a groove like John McCain clutching at his political career – with utter devastating emotionalism. And no email apparently.
The Decemberists –
Skipped it because they are the Decemberists and play way too many instruments.
It was really windy, the PA was broken, lightning was blasting through the sky, rain started to fall and the lights came up on DeerHunter. A wall of sound came out that I’ve never heard before. Then they started playing and it somehow got darker until they started singing. Then it got even darker. Like in “The Labyrinth” minus the puppets. This is one of those ‘keep listening until you understand that you’ll never be hip enough to ever say ‘wow, these guys are really cool’’ bands. Just let it happen and you can’t go wrong.
Did the Wilco thing. Girls went wild. Hipsters cried. There will be children born 9 months from now, and when they come out they’ll say “That was a great show” wearing neon wayfarers asking who Billy Bragg is.
End of day 4.
Leave camp ground, and drive around the shambles of humanity writhing in the grass seeking medical attention (no joke). Drove to Ellensburg for gas, witnessed a car sale go wrong and loaded up on MilkDuds, Big Hunk and Vanilla late from a machine. Arrive home to find (!) hot running water and (!) soap. Cat did not recognize me, neither did the wife.