Saturday, September 10, 2011

EOTR 2011 - Friday from America

Of course there was a wealth of acts from the US appearing over all three days of End Of The Road 2011 but Friday threw up a particularly interesting selection of ones that I really wanted to see performing live representing both coasts and much that comes between. I really enjoyed all of these sets. Here are two of them:

Tipi Stage, early Saturday afternoon - Sarabeth Tucek.
Her second album 'Get Well Soon' was released earlier this summer. I have had her self-titled d├ębut since it appeared in 2007 but I have no idea quite how I came to hear of this in the first place. Suffice it to say that it has been listened to consistently ever since. Neither album is really to be described as feel-good music at all, because the tone is too introspective and self-analytical for that. It is however very comforting and, while this might seen an odd thing to say when commenting on a festival performance, perhaps best listened to alone even if alone as part of a crowd and being in a crowd can be a particularly alienating kind of loneliness.
  
The contrast with the next act could hardly have been more pronounced. In a couple of minutes I walked from the indoor intimacy of the Tipi stage to the glorious afternoon sunshine of the Wood Stage and in doing so I travelled from the preoccupations of the Atlantic north-east to those of the beaches of California.
This was feel-good, beach party music. I swear I could hear the sound of surf by the end of the set.
This is Best Coast. Bethany Cosentino and Bobb Bruno. Wood Stage, Saturday afternoon.
  
I couldn't convince the others that this was the way forward so I went along regardless. The whole point of music such as this, as I see it, is that it is frivolous and inconsequential fun. The whole set followed this approach, and it was great. In between the songs random chat involving such things as Snacks' thoughts on life - Snacks is Bethany Cosentino's cat, who appears on the 'Crazy For You' album cover and also in numerous band publicity shots, in case you were wondering!
This could all lead to a diffuse, rambling performance. It took me a few songs to work out why it was not so. One person, and only one person, was in charge of this live show and that was the drummer, Ali Koehler.

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