Monday, 26 May 2008

All Tomorrow's Parties - Exposions In The Sky - Day Two

following on from day one, it's day two.
more bullet points, it seems to work:

  • flaming lips became amazing when steven drozd joined, and went duff when he got hooked on smack. they're not playing, but i did watch a 3 1/2 hour documentary that drove this point home, in gratuitous detail. but he's clean now, so maybe they'll start having ideas again. wayne coyne is nice.
  • shitty pompey
  • saul williams thinks he's the one, a rap-rock messiah from the planet, erm, 'space'. but his delivery is less bowie, more bono meets bogshed. question: why do imaginative rappers always make turgid rock? granted, i only have saul williams and mos def for evidence (no body count), but this combo of feather-headed industrial punk has little to recommend it, beyond an adrenaline-high stage entrance. plus, didn't alec empire already do this successfully with carl crack?
  • saul williams could learn a thing or two about how shit goes down in the live hip-hop arena from the break-out star of the weekend, shawn wiggs. rap-idly cementing his position as the white version of tony yayo, wiggs holds things down, especially from the point of view of swinging his arms about and walking with a stoop. his bodyguard/weed-carrier ghostface killah (who moonlights in the 'wu-tang clan') carries most of the vocals, allowing wiggs to do what he does best. ghostface seems to appreciate his end of the deal, too. see more here.
  • i didn't catch much of okkervil river, but they sounded punkier than i'd imagined, and well worth investigating. they were dressed like amish people.
  • iron and wine's feverish folk jams would work perfectly at an outdoor festival, or in the more claustrophobic confines of an intimate club gig, but doesn't quite sustain momentum here. the fault is partly with the venue: playing next to burger king their hazy sound is apt to drift without momentum. but the fault is also sam beam's: expanding from his hushed one-man-show was musically ambitious, and paid dividends on record, but the live show lacks a central personality to give focus to the fiddle solos.
  • de la soul don't have much trouble projecting personality in front of a large band, leading the 11-odd-piece rhythm roots allstars a merry dance. in a festival of sure things and unchallenging thrills, de la score an easy victory. almost all of the near twenty-year-old three feet high and rising, and almost nothing else, save a few nods to class-of-88 fellow-travellers like eric b & rakim, gratuitous instrumental solos, shameless crowd interaction, and goofy banter. maseo and trugoy grow fat(ter) gracefully, while posdnous remains the energetic focal point. likely to be back in 2028.
  • de la's lengthy sound-check allowed for a brief poke in at animal collective. i still don't understand what's going on, but i'm sure something is. loud squelches and screaming, of course.
  • i'm all for the national, who were like tindersticks but with moving parts. everyone else enjoyed them too, which is superb. i love it.
  • adem was on the saturday, too. he was in fridge, alongside four tet, whom i missed on friday, but was apparently quite good. did fridge ever release any records that anyone bought? adem played most of his new covers album, takes, a lovely, warm collection of off-kilter indie tunes from the 90s. the project seems to be conceived as a 'personal history' type of thing, and this works well live, as long as you buy into the scheme. interestingly enough, the most successful covers - yo la tengo's 'tears are in your eyes', pj harvey's 'oh my lover', low's 'laser beam' - were all oringially written by or for women. it all makes adem come across like a sensitive new-dad type. perhaps someone'll give him a column in a sunday supplement, wherein he'll reminisce about this life and detail the pitfalls of ordering your groceries from ocado. more power to the guy.
  • i can't be bothered to load this post with mp3 etc, as it'll kill my computer. but there's plenty of atp on youtube, in amongst the countless clips of rafael nadal press conferences from the other atp tour.

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