Well I arrived in San Francisco around 1:30 to meet up with some friends for some homemade salsa before I descended into the festival grounds. Once I was full and my breath smelt bad enough, I headed over to Golden Gate Park to somewhat map out my travels. The place was bigger than I thought, so right away I knew I was going to miss Beck‘s set. So I chilled out in front of the Twin Peaks stage to wait for Black Mountain.
Black Mountain are a unique psychedelic indie-rock band Canada. Most of their material sounds like a grungier and sludgier Queens of the Stone Age. The live show they put on was very impressive. Vocalist Amber Webber has got quite a set of pipes on her. Also the co-vocalist/guitarist seriously tore up some awesome guitar solos that got the crowd pretty pumped. You could tell people who weren’t familiar with the band were really digging them.
After Black Mountain, I tried my damndest to get a good spot of one of my favorite bands ever, Radiohead. I made my way to a good comfortable spot away from the drunk old people and overly stoned hippies that were laughing and dancing to absolutely nothing.
Well, I think it goes without saying that their live show was phenomenal beyond anything I was expecting. I’ve seen my fair share of videos and DVD footage, but to witness this band perform is a whole nother experience.
There is so much emotion and tightness in this band when they hit the stage. Despite the two sound cutouts (yes the sound literally turned-off in the middle of two songs for no more than 15-20 seconds) they still played on without flinching.
As you can see, they used 4 angled cameras for the huge screens during the performance. This has pretty neat considering each song had it’s own angles and color tint.
The light show was just fantastic. I’ve never seen anything like it. The hanging strips of lights and the banks of seven cell lighting modules were working in unison to create a dazzling show of pattern and color to chameleon-like effect. The set was designed by the U.K. stage lighting company i-Pix using Titan series LED lighting from Lamina. The lights used a sixth of the energy consumption usually produced by concert lighting.
Radiohead played a good collection off many of their albums as well as my favorite b-side, Talk Show Host. Mostly the songs they played were off the recent In Rainbows. Which was fine by me because that album is still slaying me since it’s release.
Overall, this is one of the best concerts I’ve ever attended. There is no question in my mind that this is the most important band in music right now.
After Radiohead was done, I aimlessly walked back to my friends place for some really strong ginger tea (I’m still kind of struck by how strong that was) and food.
Tomorrow I’ll be heading over around noon to see dredg, Lupe Fiasco, Regina Specktor and a bunch of other bands that I’m super frickin’ excited about. Twas a good night…
1. 15 Step
4. There There
5. All I Need
7. Talk Show Host
8. National Anthem
9. The Gloaming
11. Weird Fishes/Arpeggi
13. Karma Police
14. Jigsaw Falling Into Place
16. Exit Music (for a film)
18. Pyramid Song
19. You And Whose Army?
20. Paranoid Android
21. Fake Plastic Trees
22. Everything In Its Right Place