Sep 282004

Ok, so I’m a little late with the second ACL post.

On Friday, we checked out Trout Fishing in America, Rebirth Brass Band, and Franz Ferdinand. Trout Fishing was great. This was our first time checking them out live since starting to listen to them a year or so ago. I’d heard about the height discrepancy between Keith and Ezra, but you have to see it to truly appreciate it. I highly recommend them, especially if you have kids. Big Trouble is a good album to start with. I haven’t got much to say about Rebirth Brass Band as much of their performance was spent dealing with a tantruming soon-to-be-two-year-old. I’m not a big fan of New Orleans Jazz, but I can say that their sound certainly carries. It was damn loud even though we were 20 feet back from the tent that housed the stage where they were performing. By the time Franz Ferdinand came on, The La had worn herself out from the tantrum and fallen asleep. However, she still managed to croak out “Push me, mama” whenever The Wife stopped pushing the stroller. The Wife bravely stayed in a less populated area of the park pushing her around while Andy, Rachel, Anne and I took the boy for a somewhat closer view. The Boy digs Franz Ferdinand’s Gang Of Four inspired single, “Take Me Out” and really got into the live performance of it. From what I could see of it, it wasn’t a bad show. We left before they finished.

Luckily, we got babysitting for Saturday night, so we could enjoy The Pixies. Anne went earlier in the day to hear Cat Power. I would’ve liked to have seen Old 97’s, but it didn’t happen. Anne, Rachel and I went at 5 and The Wife arrived at 7. We parked ourselves at a spot where we could see both the Cingular stage and the Bank of America stage. Modest Mouse had already started when we arrived. They were pretty good. As with most of the festival, I felt like I was really too far away to really get into any of the bands. I decided just to sit back in my collapsible lawn chair, have a few beers, talk, and enjoy being outside. Modest Mouse was followed by My Morning Jacket, Dashboard Confessional, and Neville Brothers. My Morning Jacket and Dashboard Confessional (DC) were underwhelming. DC seemed to have the bigger draw with The Kids. I found their singer’s voice annoying. The Wife arrived during their set and went off to see Clarence “Gatemouth” Brown. I should’ve followed her, but was too lazy and stayed put. I was already familiar with The Neville Brothers from my Sound Warehouse days. They were fine, although still not my music of choice. The highlight of the evening was definitely The Pixies, despite the crappy sound which included several moments of feedback. They played a lot of stuff off of the older albums, “Bone Machine” and “Where Is My Mind?” among the highlights, and made me regret not having seen them in my high school/college days at a smaller venue.

Sunday was our longest day at the festival. Unfortunately, we missed Earl Harvin Trio, but arrived at 2pm to ensure that we got a good spot for The Roots. I’m a huge fan of Do You Want More?!!!??! and haven’t ever had the chance to see them live even though they seem to play Stubb’s every few months. I was unfamiliar with most of the material that they played and this particular performance seemed more rock than hip hop, so much so that they reminded me of Fishbone on more than one occasion. In the end, it was a great live show. I recommend going to see them if you haven’t had a chance, although I’d pick a time when the sun wasn’t baking me alive. Their show more than any of the others reinforced for me that the festival needs to be about a month later than it’s current date. After The Roots, we trudged across Zilker toward the Cingular stage for Elvis Costello. On the way, it became clear that we were going to have to seek shade for at least part of the afternoon if we were going to survive the rest of the day. We ended up at the H-E-Buddy Beach, which is usually sand volleyball courts, but were converted to an impromptu beach with umbrellas, plastic chairs and beach toys. It was supposed to be for families with kids and this rule was enforced by security until the sun finally went down. We made the beach our headquarters for the rest of the day, occasionally venturing out of the shade of the umbrellas to check out another stage. I listened to Elvis Costello, Spoon, and Pat Green from the beach. The sound was pretty bad for the bands unfortunate enough to be on the Cingular stage (Costello and Pat Green) and I really can’t stand Pat Green or any music of that genre, so I just closed my eyes and pretended I was on a beach but with crappy music. Some of our group went over to see Wilco at the other end of the park. It was obvious when Wilco finished as it seemed that every person from that end of the park walked past (and through) us on the way to Cake. I took the boy a little closer for a few of their songs. I really liked Fashion Nugget and Prolonging the Magic. I distinctly remember listening to Prolonging the Magic incessantly around the time The Boy was born and looking forward to singing “Sheep go to heaven ” with him. “I Will Survive” has to be one of the greatest covers ever recorded. Once again, I couldn’t really get into the show because I was so damn far away. Maybe I’m just getting old and cranky?

The Verdict?

  • Too damn many people
  • Too damn hot
  • Too many KGSR-friendly bands. I need some more raunchy/hard rock.
  • Hudson’s On The Bend had the best food
  • The beer selection sucked ass. In retrospect, it’s probably because they were limited to those that come in a can. Glass was a no-no and I guess they didn’t want to mess with kegs.

The line-up next year will have to be as good or better than this year to get me to fork over $160 again and even then, I might have to be persuaded.

 Posted by on September 28, 2004 at 5:09 pm

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