The Rest of the Fest
Sasquatch Festival on Day 2 and Day 3 seemed no different than Day 1, except perhaps with a slight Outkast hangover. Young people continued celebrating their purchased-price guaranteed good time, safely ensconced within a cushioned social bubble. Like any good biodome it was alternatingly hot and cold, the food was garbage and empty big gulp beers littered the ground. The animal onesie was a popular choice of costume; donning one immediately meant it was your responsibility to be “the life of the party” and to “get buck” when those around you waned in their enthusiasm.
The El Chupacabra tent is a big hangar-esque structure with a dirt floor. Both comedians and electronic acts share this stage. When people dance, the dust gets kicked up into the air and the light inside the tent gets very hazy. At this point you are dancing in a hazy, edm cloud, sucking on the last of your molly crumbs and trying not to trip on your neighbor’s pool noodle (why did they bring a pool noodle).
Tokimonsta acted as Boys Noize opener and played an energetic set of booty bounce and dirty club music. A far cry from anything that her Brainfeeder affiliation would imply. Or maybe those guys just all play Baltimore Club now. Boys Noize were genuinely loud and energetic, delivering on their promise as the dance headliner of the night. No curveballs during their set.
Day 1 was not the only day the festival committee attempted to schedule hip-hop. I was surprised that there were people in the audience at Tyler the Creator’s show who were not aware of his politically incorrect tendencies. A lot of confused children walking away after about 10 minutes saying “I liked the beats…” Did we not write enough about how Odd Future is ruining America? It was also funny because Tyler was issuing trigger warnings between each song. Caveat Sasquatch.
Meanwhile, on the Saturday mainstage, a whole lot of nothing. The National are just whiny baby music, and their job consists of throwing a temper tantrum whenever the green light says “go”. M.I.A’s performance seemed completely phoned in, running through her catalogue of songs with absolutely no presence. Her energetic dancers only exasperated this gulf in enthusiasm. Her guest appearance at the Superbowl that one time shines in comparison to this dud of a set.
On Sunday, both Foals and Haim took their arena rock duties seriously, telling the crowd to much delight how they love Sasquatch and how it is so beautiful there. Este Haim’s bass-face is no slouch either. Both bands sounded fine. More tranquil was Pink Mountaintops set, one that hearkened back to a simpler, less crowded festival life.
And all throughout, a large masse of local bands filled the cracks, performing admirably for the most part but are probably better experienced without competing with the noisy bleed of the main stage, the Geek Circus or the Skype tent. Chastity Belt, Tacocat, Fly Moon Royalty, Sol, La Luz, Dude York, Sandrider, all good. Go see them when they play, not at a festival, but just wherever.
The festival was a successful exchange of a couple hundred dollars for rental of a space filled with music and bad burritos. Many memories were created and delivered to people sponsored by Bud Light and Red Bull. I am pretty sure no one died. One girl was dragged away in a van when she yelled at the security for having small-dick disease. More than a few people freaked out on their drugs and fell down, but all of them got back up again.