Photo by ktjen
It’s been almost two weeks since SP20 occurred, Capitol Hill Block Part is, well by the time I finish this at least, tomorrow and I’m just attempting to polish off my coverage of the event. So, in true Noah Sanders tradition, I’ll be truncating my extensive thoughts (quickly dwindling as time goes on) in to five very quick, very informative bullet points about the events/thoughts I most vividly remember on day 2 of what I’ll continue to refer to as “the greatest musical experience I’ve been a part of”.
Once again, thanks to Sub Pop for continuing to remind me why they’re hands down the greatest record label working this days by truly putting on a celebration of their music, their friends, and all of their extremely respectful fans. It was a magical weekend and, again, I pity those who didn’t make the effort to get out there. Oh, how I pity.
So here we go:
1. No Age was, well, exactly what you’d think a live performance by No Age would be like. Dean Spunt and Randy Randall acted like a couple of talented hipsters, who’d snuck on stage with some stolen equipment to jam out some noisy melodics for a bit. It wasn’t amazing, but it was certainly solid and it did nothing to damage my huge adoration for their recent release Nouns. There were rumors that the duo would be playing within the confines of a dank basement for an unannounced house party and thats where I’d like to see them, in a tiny, sweaty little hole where the tricky distortion and Spunt’s oozing, dirty vocals could really sink in.
Fleet Foxes::Shawn Brackbill
2. I’ve seen the Fleet Foxes maybe five times now, in Austin, in Seattle, at festivals, in small clubs – hell, I feel like I’ve literally watched this uber-talented band grow in both stage presence and fanbase like a creepy old uncle. And I’ll say this: while the band, mainly Robin Pecknold, continues to blow my mind with the sheer force of beauty they’re able to create, I think they might be getting a little big for their britches. The sense of playful modesty I encountered the first few go-arounds is pretty much gone these days. Maybe it’s been the extensive touring that’s whittled them down, but I feel as if they’re very conscious of this newfound fame and they seem almost too cool for school. I’m not poo-pooing the outfit, Pecknold still has some of the more stunning pipes out there these days, I just miss the modest “gee shucks” attitude these local yokels used to expound. If you haven’t seen them, check them out this Saturday at the Block Party, your mind will be blown.
3. Blitzen Trapper has to be one of the more talented, more underappreciated bands working today. I’ve seen them live three times now, and after each performance I fall more in love with their indy-alt-country sensibilities. It was a sad sight at SP20 to watch majority of the crowd clear, favoring the shade of the adjoining stage, leaving only a small contingent of intelligent fans to truly enjoy a more country-minded collection of Blitzen Trapper tracks. On stage audience size doesn’t seem to matter to these gentleman, be it four fans or four hundred these guys are giving it their all, yelling, screaming, jumping, shaking their money makers to entertain the shit out of the audience. Even in the frequent soft moments during their SP20 set, their was such palpable emotion flowing from the stage. It was mighty impressive, and I can only wish that more were around to see it.