Saturday, August 3, 2013

Review: a WIRE & Lebowski Fest weekend

I have to say I was more excited to see WIRE ($20/Clifton Center/July18) than I was to see Forecastle. Forecastle has the excitement of 24,000 people running around in barely any clothes happy to be free from reality, and I enjoy that. But as time goes on Forecastle heads toward making multitudes reasonably happy with 'evergreen' bands, rather than making a few thousand people super excited about music. I think it's possible, Pitchfork Fest being cheaper than Forecastle (3 day pass= $120) with a much heavier line up: The Breeders, Low, Swans, Belle & Sebastian, Bjork, R Kelly, MIA, and 40 others (including WIRE).
WIRE at the lovely Clifton Center

That being said I thought Wire was lacking. Don't get me wrong, just seeing this legendary band live is enough in some respects, but it wasn't until their second encore that they really seemed to be excited about playing. Some of the crowd reported loving the show, others reported being left a little wanting. They didn't play their most popular tracks, which is what disappointed me, but some people thought this was to be expected, keeping in with Wire's early punk ethic, shunning the spotlight (and they literally shunned the spotlight, repeatedly asking that the stage lights be lowered until it was barely a dim glow). I might have enjoyed it better if I had paid an extra $30 to see them the following day at Pitchfork along side Bjork.
The following night, another $20 ticket for Lebowski Fest Movie night at Executive Bowl.
a Walter tailgating at Lebowski Fest

One thought about Lebowski Fest, it being around as long as Forecastle, it has stayed true to it's original theme. It has taken to the road and even jumped the ocean, but it's theme of bowling, one movie, costume contest, and one or two oddball performers is still there. I don't know if that is a good or bad thing.. I do think it could grow, maybe cut down the ticket price (to half ) or open up movie night to public even, add a roster to the band list that people know.. but then again we all see what can happen when our fests grow bigger than we thought possible. Even I am faced with harsh compromises while trying to afford and contain Zombie Attack these days.
Kentucky Prophet and his new EP with 'Horse VS Technology' 

 Regardless, I had fun at Lebowski Fest Movie Night. I really enjoyed the "oddball" performers. one being our very own Kentucky Prophet, the other being 1/2 of Tenacious D: Kyle Gass, otherwise known as Rage Kage. After all, Lebowski Fest is honoring eccentrics and also for eccentrics. and the Kyle Gass band dressed up as characters from The Big Lebowski along with the rest of us.. Kyle as Walter. They had fun, The Kentucky Prophet had fun and the crowd had fun. And even tho we have all seen The Big Lebowski soo many times, and it doesn't really have an ending, it really was fun watching the crowd sing along to the soundtrack and recite every little line in the movie. and just like how 'Browncoats' rallied around Firefly and made the world aware of a show that wasn't given a fighting chance, and turned that enthusiasm into a major motion picture 'Serenity' (also known as 'The Big Damn Movie'), these Achievers may be why we are hearing rumblings of a Big Lebowski sequel.
John King and the 'Rage Kage' Kyle Gass 

The Kyle Gass Band 

No comments: