@ZackTeiblom When we last left our hero, he was drunk and clean and happy to be heading to bed after a 20 hour day that ended with Watch the Throne and a treacherous bike ride home. Shockingly, I didn’t wake up feeling great. Still, it was only day two, so I had to find strength in breakfast tacos and copious amounts of electrolytes and sandwiches and power through. The day before, we’d told our contact at the bar that we’d swing by to pick up the posters around 10. It was now close to 11 and we weren’t making any sudden moves to get out of bed. I didn’t even bother texting them. I just headed out into the world, but needed to make an important stop first. Read the rest of this entry »
Archive for the ‘Festivals’ Category
@ZackTeibloom I asked Andy what he thought of my SXSW 2014 by the Numbers post and he told me it was fine, but read more as a list of things I did. He wanted the stories. We have a tradition in my family of giving a blow by blow (BBB) account of a vacation. We want to hear all the details from the airport to the meals to the events. So here’s the BBB of my SXSW.
We’ll pick up on Wednesday of music week. There was a lot of fun to be had before then, but I more or less covered the podcast tapings and parties in the by the numbers post. I promised Andy I’d pound this story out on my lunch break today. He said that I’m free pound out whatever I want, but he didn’t want to hear about it. Touche. I’ll piece it together as best I can from memory and twitter. Read the rest of this entry »
@ZackTeibloom “Ain’t no party like a purple party, ’cause a purple party don’t stop.” Prince first said this early Sunday morning during his 50-minute-long second encore. When he said it again somewhere around his fourth or fifth encore, the artist currently known as Prince had the crowd wondering if the purple party would ever stop, and hoping it wouldn’t. Those of us in the front row may have been standing in line since 7:15 p.m., and continuously stayed on our feet for the next seven and a half hours, but when Prince said “We’ve only got 20 minutes left. Let’s make them the best twenty minutes of our lives,” at 2:40 a.m., we summoned what little energy we had left on the last day of SXSW to see what the man in purple would do next. Well, those of us who were left did. But we’ll get to that. Read the rest of this entry »
@ZackTeibloom I don’t crash festivals anymore. Wow, that was weird to admit out loud. Sure, I’ll occasionally do what I have to do to get into a Jack White or Tenacious D SXSW badge-only show, but I haven’t full-on crashed a festival in over a year. Those days are more or less behind me. I didn’t even consider crashing or even look to see if it was doable this year. That doesn’t mean that a) I’ll stop going to festivals or b) I won’t always be looking for a deal. ACL at $200 is a good deal, but the three-day passes sold out before the line-up even came out. Granted, ACL hasn’t had a line-up worth skipping in the five years I’ve been in Austin, but that doesn’t mean I’m going to pay $200 several months in advance for a TBD line-up. Especially when you can always buy a ticket at the festival grounds for face, or even slightly less than face. On Friday I had my heart set on seeing Los Campesinos! at 12:30, so I obnoxiously pestered a sick with a cold Caitlin to hurry up so we could get to Zilker in time for me to find a pass and get to the stage at half past noon.
We got lucky with a free parking spot, a few blocks from the fest and started walking in as scalpers offered up $150 single-day passes and $275 full weekend passes. Dream on, dick heads trying to make cash off of goobers who don’t know any better. I half-kiddingly said “$175?” to one such dick head after he offered a pass for $275 and didn’t even slow down to bargain with him. It was far too sunny and far too early in the day to get any kind of a deal off a scalper. As I continued to walk toward the festival grounds, a guy overheard my half-hearted attempt at buying a ticket and said he had an extra he’d sell at face ($200.) I told him I may come back to him in a bit. We walked the last few minutes to the gates and came to the point where Caitlin had to break off to get her media pass and I had to figure out who had my miracle. I told her I’d meet her at the media entrance in ten minutes. She started to walk away and I turned to the guy who offered me the pass for face and said “Are you going in now?” “Yeah.” “I’ll give you $180.” “That works.” I made the exchange and saw Caitlin was only about 15 yards away from me, quickly caught up with her and headed in with enough time to find our friend before Los Campesinos! Not much to it. Now I’ll break down exactly how much value I think I got for that $180. I’m going to list a dollar amount for each show. This number represents the number I would say is perfectly fair for the show. Like, if I looked at my bank statement and it said $40 for M83, I’d say, yeah, that wasn’t a bargain, but I got my $40 worth. That was fair. I’m going to go chronologically. Read the rest of this entry »
@ZackTeibloom Jack White was simply spectacular. Compared to everyone who played this weekend, he was in a class of his own. No one else was close. But compared to other Jack White performances, he left me wanting just a bit more. Don’t get me wrong. That’s part of his appeal. I waited over four hours (mostly in the rain) for him on the festival grounds on Saturday and sat in the will-call line on the sidewalk for three and a half hours for the taping on Sunday and I don’t regret a single second of it.
It should be mentioned early on that Jack White did not play an encore either night, despite having both ample time and show staples left on the table. Arguably his biggest new single, “Sixteen Saltines,” was not heard this weekend. His one song that typically closes every show and has become an international anthem, “Seven Nation Army” was not played at the taping. There was nary a track off popular White Stripes albums De Stijl or Get Behind Me Satan and only “I’m Slowly turning Into You” off of Icky Thump, but none of the big singles. Ditto the big Raconteurs and Dead Weather stuff. He played mostly medium to deep cuts and rarely the biggest song off any album. He’s playing a bit of everything, covering his entire catalogue, but by no means is this a best-of show. This is not Paul McCartney. What we’re seeing with Jack White is an artist who is doing exactly what he wants and luckily it’s pretty much exactly what we as his fans want to hear. Read the rest of this entry »
@ZackTeibloom In an ironic twist of fate, the Festival Crashers website was crashed anonymously a couple months ago. We were pretty damn scared we’d lost 4 years of posts which we’d never be able to go back and revisit. Thanks to Andy’s crack web team, we’re back up and running, just in time for a festival weekend.
I’m ready for my 8th straight year of spending an August weekend in Grant Park for Lollapalooza. Caitlin and I are headed to Montreal this weekend for Osheaga. I’ll miss my hometown fest and the lovely people who attend, but aside from Jack White, Osheaga has a far better line-up than Lolla. Plus, I’ve always been curious about Montreal’s European ways and the thought of eating Poutine while festivaling was too much to pass up.
I’m going to cover the fest a bit differently than in years past. For one, I’m not bringing a computer. Andy and I have spent many a festival night heading right back to wherever we were crashing to stay up late writing reviews over a sandwich nightcap. Caitlin and I aren’t even seeing the headliner Saturday night. Sorry, Snoop
Dogg Lion, we’re going to actually go out and explore Montreal instead of catching your set. We’ll spend a few loonies and toonies. Check out the bio dome. Sleep in. Shower. You know, treat it like a vacation instead of a second job. We’re still going to see a ton of bands. I’ve got 27 bands I want to see that I can realistically see a good deal of. I’m not crashing. I bought a ticket like a regular schmo, so no crash story this fest, but I’ll do my best to make it interesting. Here’s my tentative schedule and top 15 shows to see. Thanks for reading, eh?
@AndyShore This was my second Coachella and third festival at the Indio Polo Grounds. I think I’m ready to call Coachella my favorite music festival. It’s the perfect setting. Camping is well organized. The grass is green and you can plop down and get some rest anywhere. The scenery is perfect. Palm trees and mountains are the backdrops to each stage. It’s not too far of a walk from camping to the festival grounds or from stage to stage. They are yet to put a lineup together in their history that I wouldn’t want to attend. Here’s my top 10 that helped solidify Coachella as the best of class. Read the rest of this entry »
@ZackTeibloom Hologram performances are an affront to live music and need to stop immediately or “live” music will go down a path far worse than 3D movies. That’s what I want to feel. I wish I could just say that and have it be true, but I was legitimately tossing and turning last night, trying to decide if I truly despise this gimmick or if I could come around on it. It’s tough to say definitively that hologram performances are a terrible thing, especially since holograms have historically made things better. From sage advice in Star Wars to making baseball cards you turn from side to side to gawk at, holograms enhance already awesome things. Well, not Will.i.am during the election, that was ridiculous, but for the most part, holograms have always made things better.
I feel like you must already know this if you’re reading an analysis of it, but since I had to explain it to my sister and another friend today, a hologram of 2Pac performed two songs during the Dre/Snoop extravaganza Sunday night at Coachella. It was bizarre, kind of cool and really gimmicky. Look, 2Pac is dead. So are Elvis, Kurt Cobain, Jimi Hendrix and half of The Beatles. This is a reality we have to live with. Plugging Kurt Cobain into Guitar Hero and making a hologram of 2Pac doesn’t change that. It cheapens their legacy. I understand having a recording of Nate Dogg play during his parts of a song, because he’s an integral part of the band and it wouldn’t be right to do it without him. But a hologram that has 2Pac saying “What the fuck is up, Coachella?!” Seriously, what the fuck is up? It’s sacrilegious and tacky and fake. When you have Dre & Snoop & Eminem & 50 Cent & Wiz Khalifa & G-Unit live, in the flesh, bullet wounds and all, why project 2Pac into the proceedings? It was as unnecessary and excessive as the Dre/Snoop cover of “Jump Around.” Live music is a sacred thing. I’m aware that this isn’t the first time* there’s been a digital image of one artist performing with another, but this is the first one that’s gotten huge national attention as soon as it happened. I fear that we’re heading down a terrible path if this goes from an occasional gimmick to the norm and I can’t even come to grips with how I truly feel about it. Read the rest of this entry »
@ZackTeibloom Well, we survived the weekend at Coachella. It wasn’t easy, but if you follow this advice, you won’t miss any great artists or have your tent flip over. Also, you’ll learn how to not get stuck inside the festival, how to find a half-decent bathroom and find some decent eats. First things first, if you’ve looked at the weather report for Indio, the highs are 101, 102 and 101. Or, as I like to call it, every day in summer in Austin. But unlike the never ending hell-fire that is Austin, it gets super cold at night in the desert. As silly as it may seem, bring a hoodie and tie it around your waist. It gets cold at night. Always. And bring extra blankets. Don’t underestimate the desert. Oh, and bring Chapstick with SPF. My lips are peeling. It’s gross. If you’re actually going, you’re already in festival mode and not in the mood to read anything long, so let’s get right into it. Read the rest of this entry »