Wow. I am exhausted. Yesterday was all about will power. The highlights were excellent performances by The Avett Brothers, Reverend Horton Heat, The Devil Makes Three, and The Decemberists. Here’s my shots.
I love this band. I saw them some years back, and got the added bonus of seeing The Head and the Heart as openers. At the time, I believe that Jenny Conlee, pianist among other instruments in The Decemberists, had recently been diagnosed with cancer. The show was subdued, and Conlee was absent. There seemed to be a pall over the band. Regardless, their technical execution was flawless. They just seemed disengaged from the audience.
Since then, Conlee’s cancer has gone into remission. I am curious to see the band now; the change in context might affect the band’s performance. I am hoping for a little more engagement this time around.
I love these songs. I love them so hard.
The Decemberists play on Saturday at Bunbury 2015.
True story: I have been disappointed by the Bunbury line-up in the past. Last year’s line-up was lackluster. Of the headliners, I was unpassionate about Empire Of the Sun and Flaming Lips and don’t enjoy Fall Out Boy and Paramore. Turned out, Empire Of The Sun was one of the best live performances I have ever seen. And the Flaming Lips, although not my thing, put up a really fun show. All in all I was satisfied with my experience regardless of what was, IMHO, a bummer booking in Fall Out Boy and Paramore. I am rarely at the fest for the headliners, and there were plenty of mid-tier acts that I enjoyed. Kopecky Family Band, Kishi Bashi, Wild Cub, Cage the Elephant, Holy Ghost!, The Lighthouse and the Whaler, Bronze Radio Return and more, made my ticket well worth it. For my past Bunbury thoughts check these out.
This year? I was concerned when the fest was sold to Promowest. The line-up was anyone’s guess. Given that I purchased my VIP tickets right after Bunbury last year (pro tip: they are cheapest then, but clearly it’s a risk as there’s no line-up announced), I had some skin in this game.
I am thrilled that Promowest put a line-up together that is better than my highest hopes for this fest. Granted the bar was a bit low, given that last year’s line-up was not my favorite. Check out the full announcement here.
I haven’t checked out the Avett Brothers, Tame Impala, Atmosphere, and Matt & Kim, so I am excited to see them. I’ve seen The Black Keys, The Decemberists, Twenty One Pilots, Walk The Moon, and Manchester Orchestra, and I am trilled to give all of them another go. While Twenty One Pilots aren’t exactly my bag, their show was really fun to watch. And while Walk The Moon’s fans are little rambunctious for this 38 year-old, the band is so thrilled to play their hometown and with their sound reminiscent of The Talking Heads (if you know me, you know 80’s pop is my catnip), combines to me enjoying their shows. What’s not to love about The Black Keys and The Decemberists? Top it all off with ticking Snoop Dogg off my bucket list, and I am a happy, happy ticket holder. So, cheers to you Promowest!
One other wonkish thing to note, Promowest “leaked” the line-up to Cincinnati local media early. Nice marketing move there. My Facebook feed exploded when that happened. I was a little concerned that a Columbus company might misread the Cincinnati market in terms of line-up and media. This is one of those rare circumstances in which I am happy to be wrong. In a couple months, I will start my Bunbury music reviews, so check back in April. Happy listening!