July 2, 2008

As It Turns Out, Sun Screen Dyes Beards Blue. Neon Blue. Guess Who Shaved When He Got Home.

The SoCo Fest was last Saturday and, to say the least, it freaking rocked. Highlights of the day include: (Almost) every band that played (Laylights, Eagle Seagull, Maneline, DJ Stareyes, The Dead Confederates, The Hot IQs, Bassnectar, Blonde Redhead, Gnarls Barkley), Death+Taxes handing out free issues and free subscriptions, shirts screen printed in front of you, and Rock Band Contests that my friends and I won, winning a Guitar and other things. Also, DJ Stareyes playing Prodigy songs ... it made the day even more spectacular.

Laylights: As good as ever, but no real big surprise. Maybe I've seen them too often. Their new stuff is actually really good and warrants a few listens. Unfortunately I only have older stuff:

Laylights - Sparrow

Eagle Seagull: I'd heard a few songs before, but holy christ am I going to have to look into this band further now that I've seen them. Apparently they've got a new album coming out next year. I'm excited for it, to say the least. Maybe the most interesting bass lines I've ever heard.

Eagle Seagull - Your Beauty is A Knife I Turn on My Throat

ManeLine: Heck yes! Super duo packing a competent DJ and spitting rhymes that, at least, were sonically pleasing. I couldn't really understand what was being said because of the acoustics, but the two that are Maneline and their slew of collaborators who joined them all knew what they were doing as far as making music that sounds great.

ManeLine - Good & Bad

DJ Stareyes: She played Prodigy songs. How in the heck am I expected to say anything less than "she is my new favorite DJ" or "I have a terrible crazy crush on this chica now"

Star Eyes - Strobe

The Dead Confederates: Tom described them as what seemed to be Grunge-revivalists. I can see where he gets that, but I think they're more towards shoegaze/noise rock than anything else. I was off winning things at the Rock Band Competition while most of their set played through, but, based on what I heard, I think that I wouldn't have been in the mood for the whole set, because it was kind of a downer. They were noisey as hell though.

The Dead Confederates - The Rat

The Hot IQs: I was mostly busy getting settled in VIP when they were playing, but man ... from where I was I could tell that they were rocking better that I'd heard in a long time. But maybe I've just seen them too often. Either way, this sounded like it was one of their best performances.

The Hot IQs - Nightstand (this one is for Margaret)

Bassnectar: Like Girltalk, but with more Reggae. Less "let's go freaking nuts" and more "lets bop around." Tom's favorite of the day.

Bassnectar - Stomp

Blonde Redhead: I've been waiting to see these guys for ... oh ... lets just say forever and get that whole exaggeration thing out of the way now. Blonde Redhead is one of my absolute all time favorite bands, so to finally get to see them live, and for free nonetheless, was more than terrific. Every part of their set was phenomenal, at least, to me. So terribly pleased.

Blonde Redhead - Falling Man

Gnarls Barkley: I have a deeper respect for Cee-lo's lyrics and Gnarls Barkley as a whole now that I've seen them live. Every song had this deep emotional feeling to it that I just didn't get while listening to the albums. I have a feeling that when I go back and listen through the albums, I'm going to get an entirely different experience. Transformer was the highlight of the set. They slowed it down and just let it hang in the air for a long time, replacing any abrasive qualities in the original song with overwhelming warmth.

Gnarls Barkley - Transformer

Here are too many pictures and not enough words (some of the pics are taken from the center of the VIP section, which was a little ways away from the stage, so the pics might be a little blurry or pixelated):

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