Archive: August 3, 2008 - August 9, 2008

Foo Fighters: The Perfect Headliners

If there was any question as to who the big draw of Day 1 was, it was answered by the frenzy the broke out in the densely packed crowd (a solid 100 rows stretching the entire South Stage area) when Foo Fighters tore into "The Pretender" and "Times Like These."...

By David Malitz | August 9, 2008; 10:09 PM ET | Comments (1)

Sleeping Through The Static

I got to Jack Johnson's stage just in time to hear the least-funky Sly Stone interpolation in pop history. Lucky me. Johnson is the new king of soft rock, specializing in slight, breezy songs that have about as much edge as the beach ball that just landed at my feet....

By David Malitz | August 9, 2008; 9:14 PM ET | Comments (3)

Underworld: So You Think You Can Dance?

A music-loving friend of mine recently said that he just didn't understand the appeal of live dance music -- that the thought of standing around and watching a bunch of guys pressing buttons and twiddling knobs was about as appealing as, oh, I dunno, the bite of soggy, half-eaten crabcake...

By David Malitz | August 9, 2008; 8:51 PM ET | Comments (0)

Wilco: What They Once Were Isn't What They Want To Be Anymore

It's come to this - Wilco is now a band that inspires mid-song clapping after an especially impressive guitar solo. This isn't the most terrible thing in the world. Nels Cline is a world-class guitarist and his skills are worth applauding. But when that becomes the highlight of just about...

By David Malitz | August 9, 2008; 8:32 PM ET | Comments (4)

Today's Forecast: Hail!

Chuck Berry just oozes cool, doesn't he? The man who helped define rock-and-roll attitude in its formative years sauntered onto the stage in a spangly red shirt, white captain's hat and black slacks, then smiled wryly while pretending to stretch. No need for sustained posturing, though. Berry almost immediately got...

By David Malitz | August 9, 2008; 7:46 PM ET | Comments (0)

The Silver Beats Make the Festival Crowd Come Together

There are two directions you can go when it comes to covers. Either completely revamp the song and make it your own or don't change a thing. There have been plenty of bands to put their own spin on the songs of the Beatles but it's hard to go wrong...

By David Malitz | August 9, 2008; 7:06 PM ET | Comments (0)

Sales Pitch

A festival isn't Just Another Show. It's also an opportunity. Consider the case of Citizen Cope, the hip-hop/blues/soul/rock/reggae hybrid led by D.C.-bred singer-musician Clarence Greenwood. The band is playing to some of its fans, the ones who know the lyrics to the set-opening "Bullet and a Target." But Cope is...

By David Malitz | August 9, 2008; 6:13 PM ET | Comments (0)

The Offspring: A Terrible Band

As I was eating my $6 slice of pizza I thought to myself, what a pleasant day it's been so far. I caught at least 15 minutes of six acts and the quality ranged from pretty good to really, really good. And then came the Offspring. This festival is heavy...

By David Malitz | August 9, 2008; 5:32 PM ET | Comments (5)

Now, For Something Competely Different

Not that there's a clear stylistic thread tying the artists together (not with the festival's guiding philosophy basically being Bands That Promoter Seth Hurwitz Likes); but there's nobody else on the bill even remotely like Rodrigo y Gabriela. The Mexican duo is shredding through a set of flamenco songs played...

By David Malitz | August 9, 2008; 5:16 PM ET | Comments (2)

Random Question

Did you tools really pay $100+ just to come here and play frisbee hit unsuspecting concertgoers in the head with a frisbee because you can't even throw a frisbee right, you stupid tools? --DAVID MALITZ...

By David Malitz | August 9, 2008; 4:50 PM ET | Comments (0)

Rated "E" For Everyone

Just wandered into the Dance Tent to catch some of Soulwax's set, and the boys from Belgium are using a detonative drum-and-bass pattern and a looped vocal sample to send a euphoric surge through the crowd: "The party on the weekend/never dies," an exotic, robotic female voice says repeatedly. The...

By David Malitz | August 9, 2008; 4:48 PM ET | Comments (0)

Please Explain to Me ... Why Sharon Jones Isn't a Huge Star

I defy anyone to say anything negative about a Sharon Jones and the Dap-Kings performance. She's a soul singing dynamo, with a voice of a long-lost Stax artist, and stage presence that would have made the Godfather of Soul proud. "When I get the mic in my hand I lose...

By David Malitz | August 9, 2008; 4:30 PM ET | Comments (0)

All In The Gang

The members of Bloc Party have said that they dislike Gang of Four comparisons, as they don't exactly fancy the '80s band whose blend of spiky, dissonant guitars and punk-funk beats provided a post-punk template. But then Bloc Party comes roaring out of the gate here with songs that feature...

By David Malitz | August 9, 2008; 4:18 PM ET | Comments (0)

Yeah, I Think I'll Stick to the Music

On my way across Pimlico's infield to get to Sharon Jones on the North Stage I figured I'd take in one of the many "attractions," this one being the Bindlestiff Family Cirkus & High-Wire Act. I have a mild case of high-wire fever, I guess, thanks to "Man on Wire."...

By David Malitz | August 9, 2008; 3:36 PM ET | Comments (1)

Lupe on a Beautiful Day

"Can I get a wired microphone? Like, a microphone with a wire in it?" It's never a good sign when you have to ask that during a set, but Lupe Fiasco's mic is not cooperating, cutting out for about every other word. For some acts this wouldn't be so bad...

By David Malitz | August 9, 2008; 3:13 PM ET | Comments (0)

Alone Apart

Bold man, that Glen Hansard. The Irish singer-songwriter opened the Swell Season set onstage alone, with his battle-scared acoustic guitar, singing "Say It to Me Now." A quavering voice, a strummy guitar, a brittle but delicate song - tough sell at an outdoor rock festival. But the performance was riveting...

By David Malitz | August 9, 2008; 2:36 PM ET | Comments (0)

Thump Thump Thump

There is no happier - or louder - place than the Dance Tent here at Virgin Mobile Festival. Get within 100 feet of the tent and your bones start to rattle thanks to the thumping bass. Then when you get inside it's a bunch of smiling people jumping up and...

By David Malitz | August 9, 2008; 2:33 PM ET | Comments (0)

Going Crazy for Gogol

Gogol Bordello is a self-proclaimed "gypsy punk" band, and there's an inherent amount of shtickiness that goes along with that. Gogol doesn't shy away, going completely over the top - they employ three hype men after all. (Actually, two are women, wearing outfits very similar to those sported by the...

By David Malitz | August 9, 2008; 2:11 PM ET | Comments (0)

No Mercy

The 24-year-old Welsh singer Aimee Duffy is showing her roots. Her follicular ones, anyway: You can see some dark hair peeking out from under her dyed-blond 'do as she sashays across the stage in a slinky red dress. Musically, it's a different story. Duffy - who uses her surname as...

By David Malitz | August 9, 2008; 1:30 PM ET | Comments (0)

Really?

Actually overheard (from a woman old enough to know better): "What's a Chuck Berry song?" Her husband, a full two minutes later: "Johnny B Goode!" --DAVID MALITZ...

By David Malitz | August 9, 2008; 1:27 PM ET | Comments (0)

Down With Cat Power

Cat Power's Chan Marshall specializes in songs sung blue - sad, sorrowful indie-torch ballads and rockers that are often downtempo and almost always downcast. As such, the festival got off to decidedly depressive start, with Cat Power opening on the North Stage with a gorgeously gloomy set of originals and...

By David Malitz | August 9, 2008; 1:14 PM ET | Comments (0)

KT: More Than OK

The first major difference with this year's festival is that there really is no second stage. Last year's South Stage was clearly the b-stage, no matter what the promoters tried to say. This time both get the major league treatment. KT Tunstall is the first pleasant surprise of the day...

By David Malitz | August 9, 2008; 12:57 PM ET | Comments (0)

Don't Need a Weatherman

Apologies to those of you who couldn't get enough of our constant "Man, it's hot here" updates last year. That's not an issue today. In fact, it's cool enough that I decided to wear jeans to go with my Double Dagger t-shirt. (Sorry, J Free, that's one issue where we...

By David Malitz | August 9, 2008; 12:17 PM ET | Comments (0)

Virgin Mobile Festival Preview: Vital Albums

Malitz and I scoured the discographies of each band in the VFest lineup to come up with the 10 albums that belong in your collection. We debated doing 11, just to get Lil Wayne's "Da Drought 3" onto the list; but there's no symmetry to that number. And yes, there...

By J. Freedom du Lac | August 8, 2008; 10:06 PM ET | Comments (5)

Virgin Mobile Festival Preview: Bob Dylan

Two out of three Posties think "Visions of Johanna" is the (soy) bomb. In advance of Bobby Z's Virgin Mobile Festival performance on Sunday, Malitz and I asked various Posties (including each other) to put together annotated lists of their Top 5 Dylan songs. UPDATE (12:43 p.m., 8/8/08): Gene Weingarten...

By J. Freedom du Lac | August 7, 2008; 11:59 PM ET | Comments (44)

Virgin Mobile Festival Preview: Shudder To Think

Shudder To Think, back for some more. If Shudder To Think doesn't exactly fit in with this year's Virgin Mobile Festival lineup, it's nothing new for the just-reunited band. They've made a career of being outcasts, whether it was as the avant-pop band on D.C. punk label Dischord or...

By David Malitz | August 7, 2008; 11:46 PM ET | Comments (0)

Virgin Mobile Festival Preview: Post Rock Draft

"Still trying to figure out how I wasn't the first pick..." In which Malitz and I finally figure out how to move our shared fantasy-baseball obsession into the music space. The draft to determine our live-blogging assignments took place this afternoon via IM. (Note that most of the undrafted...

By J. Freedom du Lac | August 7, 2008; 6:40 PM ET | Comments (3)

Virgin **MOBILE** Festival Preview: Andrew Bird

He whistles, plays violin, plays glockenspiel ... and this Bird can sing. (Programming Reminder: Post Rock will be blogging LIVE from Virgin Mobile Festival all weekend. Check in often on Saturday and Sunday for updates.) Andrew Bird is just another one of those world-class whistling, sometimes glockenspieling former child...

By David Malitz | August 7, 2008; 11:12 AM ET | Comments (1)

Virgin Festival Preview: Moby

(Programming Reminder: Post Rock will be blogging LIVE from Virgin Mobile Festival all weekend. Check in often on Saturday and Sunday for updates.) Last night a DJ saved my life. Actually, he answered my email while I was at the Jonas Brothers concert in Baltimore, but as there's no well-known...

By J. Freedom du Lac | August 7, 2008; 10:29 AM ET | Comments (0)

Virgin Festival Preview: Should We Talk About The Weather?

Last year's Style section headline captured it perfectly: "Gimme Swelter." The first day of VFest 2007 was something like a steam bath, turning Pimlico into the sweatiest place on Earth. (Day Two was much more pleasant - but by then, just about everybody had been baked into submission.) So what...

By J. Freedom du Lac | August 7, 2008; 8:50 AM ET | Comments (1)

Virgin Festival Preview: The Silver Beats

The Silver Beats won't let you down. (Programming Reminder: Post Rock will be blogging LIVE from Virgin Mobile Festival all weekend. Check in often on Saturday and Sunday for updates.) The most interesting performance at Virgin Festival promises to be Chuck Berry with the Silver Beats. One of rock-and-roll's...

By David Malitz | August 6, 2008; 4:13 PM ET | Comments (2)

Virgin Festival Preview: The Stooges

The Stooges: They came to play, to play real good. (Programming Reminder: Post Rock will be blogging LIVE from Virgin Mobile Festival all weekend. Check in often on Saturday and Sunday for updates.) Ron Asheton is in the Stooges. They play loud and hard and fast. See for yourself...

By David Malitz | August 5, 2008; 10:37 AM ET | Comments (1)

Please Explain to Me ... Concert T-Shirts

So I'm with birthday boy Klimek outside the Coldplay show last night, and we see a guy at Chipotle wearing a Viva La Vida T-shirt, presumably purchased (for $35) at an earlier stop on the tour. Fancy that. I've never been a concert-tee guy myself, having purchased exactly one in...

By J. Freedom du Lac | August 4, 2008; 10:55 AM ET | Comments (21)

 

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