Ellery Roberts of WU LYF
The smell of horse shit hung in the air like a nauseating fog as my festival date Kerry and I walked toward the main entrance of the Empire Polo Club grounds for the first day of Coachella’s second weekend. There were only a half-dozen horses in sight, but their collective output plus the day’s triple-digit heat choked the air.
The temperature gauge inside the rental car I drove to Indio read 106. I felt every last degree as I walked to the first porta-potty in sight. I might as well have taken a piss on the sun’s surface.
The week prior to Coachella I vowed to dance my ginger ass off, in spite of the heat. I underestimated its oppressiveness. Fortunately, rivers of bottled water, globs of sunscreen, and an overpriced straw hat saved me from the worst the sun had to offer. And, in no time, I was dancing my ginger ass off, albeit under the festival’s three tents.
NOTE: Click here for photos of Friday’s festivities. Also, check out my Friday playlist by clicking here.
Someday I want to attend South by Southwest in Austin, Texas. It’s a bar-hopping live music extravaganza of epic proportions featuring fresh-faced local bands and grizzled national acts.
Portland’s MusicFest Northwest is what I imagine South by Southwest is like, albeit smaller and in the Pacific Northwest. (Duh!)
I witnessed everyone from veteran post-rock outfit Explosions In The Sky and dynamic Seattle hip-hop act Macklemore and Ryan Lewis to local buzz bands And And And and Ages and Ages during the three days I attended MusicFest Northwest 2011.
It was a solid festival. I would hesitate to call it great because the headlining options — Iron and Wine, Explosions in the Sky, Band of Horses –could have been better. But overall I enjoyed myself.
GIVERS at Mission Theater in PDX
Lafayette, La.’s GIVERS are back with a new video for a giddy cut — is there any other kind? — from In Light called “Meantime.” The band previously released a video for their first single, “Up Up Up.”
I have chronicled my band crush on GIVERS for quite some time. Notice I listed In Light as my fifth favorite album of 2011 (so far).
GIVERS’ exuberance just doesn’t get old. I am looking forward to seeing them play Doug Fir in Portland on Sept. 9. Check out GIVERS’s website for more info on their current tour.
And in the, um, meantime check out their new video! Plus: Here’s a cool interview with the band.
A few weeks ago, I raved about GIVERS’s superb set at Mission Theater in Portland.
On Monday night, the Lafayette, La., quintet made their network television debut on NBC’s “Late Night With Jimmy Fallon.”
GIVERS played their jubilant first single, “Up, Up, Up”, off their debut album, In Light. It was a spirited performance. Then again, do GIVERS ever not give a spirited performance?
Kudos and congrats to them!
Janelle Monae at Voodoo 2010. Photo: CajunTomato
I am anxiously anticipating the release of the complete 2011 Voodoo Music Experience roster to decide whether to attend. I’m not going to fly to south Louisiana for just any old lineup. I could be persuaded, however, by a bad-ass collection of artists.
So far, Voodoo organizers have released two names — grunge legends Soundgarden and mash-up party animal Girl Talk. Those acts are sure to light a fire under some to purchase tickets. I am not one of those people. I want to see more.
I have confidence in Voodoo’s bookers. They have done well over the years. I’ve seen a who’s who in contemporary music at the festival — Red Hot Chili Peppers, Nine Inch Nails, Lil Wayne, Lupe Fiasco, Stone Temple Pilots, R.E.M., My Morning Jacket, TV On The Radio, Janelle Monae, Interpol, MGMT, etc.
Here are six acts that I would love to see on the 2011 Voodoo bill:
Taylor Guarisco (left) and Josh LeBlanc of GIVERS
Exuberant indie-pop quintet GIVERS took the stage Tuesday night at Mission Theater in Portland to a seated audience — the very image was the antithesis of the sweaty, enraptured crowds I had seen before at the Lafayette, La., band’s shows.
A few people, myself included, nudged toward the open carpeted area near the stage, but most showgoers seemed stuck in movie-watching mode. After all, the Mission Theater mostly functions as a venue for watching movies and sporting events.
I had my doubts about how GIVERS playing this type of environment would effect the vibe. More directly, would it kill the vibe?
All my questions were erased when co-vocalist Taylor Guarisco invited those seeking permission to come closer to the stage. Afterward, he didn’t have to invite them to dance. The setlist, featuring one giddy, life-affirming tune after another, did that trick.
GIVERS' debut album drops June 7.
I first heard GIVERS’ infectious “Up, Up, Up” on a steamy July night two years ago at Chelsea’s Cafe in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. The energy the quintet produced on stage came from a joyous place. Quite frankly, I was taken aback because I had seen co-vocalist Tif Lamson perform in a formless noise art experiment called Bad Chad and the Good Girls a week or two earlier in New Orleans. I had no idea she could sing.
At the time of the Chelsea’s show, GIVERS were an unknown band hoping to capitalize on an one-off opening slot for The Dirty Projectors. Today, the Lafayette, Louisiana-based band is preparing to tour the U.S. in anticipation of the release of their first album, In Light, on Glassnote Records.
“Up, Up, Up” remains their bread and butter, but the In Light version gets to the good stuff quicker than the version on the band’s debut ep. Co-vocalists Taylor Guarisco and Tif Lamson open the track harmonizing the sunburst chorus. It’s a marked change from the previous version’s opening half-minute sans vocals, and ultimately makes the already lively track all the more enjoyable.