Bumbershoot 2006

Another very succesful bumbershoot trip – that’s 3 in a row. Let’s remember past highlights first:

2003 – Gordon Downie and the Country of Miracles, REM
2004 – The friggin Pixies!

This year – The New Pornographers, Jose Gonzales and Zero 7. Thew new pornographers set was actually a bit of a dissapointment. The sound was loud but not perticularly clear, and they only played 3 songs from the record of their’s that I own (Mass Romantic). Also, they didn’t play the best song from that record. Still, I did enjoy some of the tracks I hadn’t heard before. I think the New Pornographers are a little like Guided by Voices, in the sense that while they seem like a regular rock band, they are suprisingly difficult to listen to the firs time, and over multiple listenings their music matures and becomes like a fine french wine.

After the new pornographers (1pm), I didn’t really watch another set until Jose at 8. I perused the art exibits, bought a book about a hoax in 19th century New York (which I think I might mail to Dory after I’m finished with it), took a long nap, and saw a wonderful bluegrass group busk. The bluegrass group was called spoonshine (www.spoonshine.com). Many MP3s and even videos are available in full on their website. Also someone gave me a promotional copy of “Ready Made” magazine which I’m now going to recommend to all of you. It outlines DIY projects you can do yourself (did I just repeat myself?), and exudes a general air of awesomeness. I also gave away my mainstage pass which I had picked up for the purpose of selling. My attempt to sell it went ary when the first person I asked genuinly needed the pass and couldn’t offer any money for it. Also, she was beautiful (but not in the sort of way that she could obviously get any favours she needed). It’s hard not to do favours for beautiful maiden’s in need.

Jose Gonzales’ set was very intimate. Set at a smaller stage, with far too many people – I had a chair, however, due to some planning ahead. While I don’t own any of his records, I did know all of the songs he played in his fairly short set. The shortness of the set was offset, however, by his appearence with Zero 7 afterwards. Zero 7 are an electronic dance rock band, featured in the Garden State soundtrack. (If you’ve seen the movie, their song is used during the Party montage which spans the drug affected evening). Jose played with some of their songs early on, and for their last song (other than an acoustic dance off encore) they played Jose’s song “catch some light” (I don’t actually know the title, but that should be enough). It was wonderful because Jose had already played that song earlier at his set; solo acoustic. Played for 15 minutes (the song was originally mayb 4 minutes) with 3 keyboardists, a drummer, and an electric guitar player the same composition took on an entirely different character which retaining very srongly its essence. It was one of few times at concerts I havn’t felt stupid for participating in a strong audience wide clap. (We clapped on the downbeat, for the most part, despite the guitar player’s attempt to get us to clap on the upbeat. After that we clapped on both the upbeat and the downbeat – which was strangely intense).

The drive home included a monstrous bag of kettle corn that my brother had purchased for 6$, and a stop at a 24 grocery to buy a baguette and some cucumber.

In short, bands worth spending more time with: Zero Seven.

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