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Festival Review: Bonnaroo X (Thursday and Friday)

15 Jun

If you have been wondering where have all the posts been this past week, WEST LA CNCT has a semi-legitimate excuse for the lack of new music.  The truth of the matter is that we have all been losing our minds at the musical utopia known as Bonnaroo X.

It was hotter than hell.  It was dustier than ever.  We got maybe three hours of sleep every night. But it was the most magical experience of our lives!

Bonnaroo’s 10th birthday party kicked off on a little (700 acre) farm in Manchester, TN.  The party began Thursday night after most of the 80,000+ attendees made it to the festival grounds.  It was a good way to ease into the madness that ensued in the next few days.  We got to enjoy the giant mushroom fountain, ferris wheel, bobble head sculptures, and run around from This Tent to That Tent to The Other Tent without an overwhelming crowd to hold us back.  And of course we got to see some stellar music.   At the top of our music highlights of Thursday night would have to be Sleigh Bells, a noise pop duo hailing from Booklyn, NY, who pretty much blew everyones hipster glasses off with their dance friendly tunes.  Thursday night also included performances by other indie acts Best Coast, Band of Skulls, Deer Hunter,–and to end off the night–Beats Antique.

Friday was the more official kick off to the festival.  As a little day time warm up we saw all types of bands from legends like Bela Fleck & The Original Flecktones, Warren Haynes Band, and Wanda Jackson to rap superstars Atmosphere to Bonnaroo vets Primus and Grace Potter!

Jim James of My Morning Jacket

But the real magic didn’t come until six-time Bonnaroo vets My Morning Jacket played a killer 2 hour set on the main stage followed by another unreal set from Bonnaroo rookies Arcade Fire. My Morning Jacket played some great songs from their new album “Circuital” mixed in with classics like “Touch Me I’m Going to Scream Pt. 2”, “Evil Urges”, “One Big Holiday”, and “Wordless Chorus”–just to name a few–even bringing out special guests from the Preservation Hall Jazz Band to accompany them on some tracks. Canadian six-piece band  Arcade Fire blew me away with their amazing talent both instrumentally and vocally and played a great mix of songs from all four of their studio albums. Both sets will forever stick in my memory as some of the greatest performances I’ve ever witnessed.

Up next was the late night acts, and who better to kick off the night than Bassnectar performing inside This Tent from 12:30-2:00.  Obviously word of Bassnectar‘s crazy live sets has gotten out because his crowd reached WAY outside the tent almost all the way past the mushroom fountain.  But that didn’t stop us from getting right in the middle of the action almost front row to get our shit rocked by some unbelievably dirty bass.  If you haven’t seen Bassnectar yet, get on it because he is on FIRE right now. Next came one the harder compromises of the weekend, so we shot over to check out 4-5 songs including crowd favorites like “Loud Pipes” from, my personal heros, Ratatat who were absolutely killing it. Then we went over to the madness that is Shpongle performing on a crazy rig he likes to call the Shpongletron Experience.  And it really was an experience–from on stage dancers, to morphing and melting Shpongle masks, to the unreal ‘third eye’ that had a crazy lazer show coming out of it!  Shpongle thoroughly impressed us all by dropping awesomely mind-melting tracks ranging from deep trance to worldly Indian/Middle-Eastern tracks.  It was quite the experience.  Then to top the night off, when we all thought we couldn’t handle anything else,  we walked over to catch Pretty Lights throw it down with a very impressive light and sound rig until the sun literally rose. What a night!

Shpongletron Experience

Check back soon for a review of Saturday and Sunday, when more magic really kicked in!

Spread the love.Share the wealth. WEST LA CNCT™

-Mike.D

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Coachella 2011 Recap

29 Apr

For me, it was an event categorized more by experiences than music. With that being said, here’s my take and a few jams dedicated to the best party around.

Friday began with some heavy sunshine and even heavier dubstep. As usual, 12th Planet threw down an energetic, crowd-pleasing set. Dubstep’s American embassador has great taste for new music and tons of stage presence. He stood on the DJ booth a few times during the slower points of the set to get the crowd amped. I have yet to be disappointed by one of 12th Planet’s performances.

I was able to catch bits of Excision and Skrillex‘s sets between trips to the beer garden. Both kept the crowd jumping with their bass-filled soundtracks to nondescript horror movies. The live collaboration between Skrillex and a few members of Korn was a highlight.

After a house version of “Scary Monsters and Nice Sprites”, the Sahara tent shifted gears for the breakthrough hip-hop group, Odd Future Wolf Gang Kill Them All. Despite all the negative press regarding their performance, Odd Future was one of my favorite acts all weekend. Reminiscent of an old-school punk show, the group
did their best to incite a riot. The chaos of the set featured chants of “Wolf Gang!” and “Fuck the Police!”, crowd surfing, moshpits, some daring stunts by Tyler the Creator, and all around anarchy. Shout out to Big Tuna for keeping the party alive during this one!

Tyler the Creator-French (Toro y Moi Remix)

 

Once OFWGKTA ended, I had a brief time grab another drink, catch my breath, and enjoy some of A-Trak‘s feel-good combination of hip-hop and house. The transition between a cut-up, scratch-happy version of “All of the Lights” and “6’ 7′” was definitely a highlight.

What can I say about Afrojack that hasn’t been said already? This was the third Afrojack set I have had the pleasure to experience and it was unquestionably the best, and my favorite set of Coachella 2011. His ability to combine original, mind-blowing music with flawless, extended build-ups has always left me amazed. A testament to this was the presence of none other than Sir Paul McCartney. If music royalty has the good sense enjoy your set, your doing something right. I strive to think this is a sign of the upcoming dominance of electronic music.

Afrojack and Adele- Rolling in the Right (DEFEP Bootleg)

 

 

After a few shenanigans, I made it over the main stage to catch rock heavy-hitters, The Black Keys and Kings of Leon. Both bands tore the main stage up, with slashing guitar melodies and true southern rock style. I can’t wait to catch The Black Keys again at Bonnaroo!

The last portion of the night was dedicated to raging with some talented DJs. Boys Noize was on his game as usual, keeping the Sahara Tent going with his crazy, German techno sound. Hearing him drop his Daft Punk remix was a highlight for me. House legends, The Chemical Brothers, were given the main stage honor and they took full advantage of it. The HEAVY bass the stage had to offer, accompanied by some incredible production, made for one spectacular performance. Here’s another link to a track with the best of both worlds.
The Chemical Brothers- Swoon (Boys Noize Remix)

 

On Saturday, the weekend took a turn for the stranger. As such, I can no longer give a detailed play by play like Friday. Here are some of the highlights:

Trampled by Turtles fired up the main stage early with their own fast-paced blend of folk, country, and rock. Despite being a band more traditionally suited to play Stagecoach than Coachella, they put on an extremely enjoyable show.
Trampled by Turtles-Wait So Long

 

Two Door Cinema Club was a cool change of pace. Their light-hearted, indie rock style fit perfectly in the afternoon, and the crowd was loving them.

Two Door Cinema Club – Something Good Can Work The Twelves Remix

 

Chuckie was the only electronic act I caught all day, but he was no disappointment. If there is any dutch house artist comparable to Afrojack, it’s Chuckie. His set, filled with deep bass and toy gun synths, certainly kept the Sahara Tent happy.

Carolina Marquez-Wicked Wow (Chuckie Extended Mix)
http://groovebat.com/download/sdb.mp3

 

The last act to perform on Saturday I feel qualified to discuss is Mumford & Sons. The fast rising popularity of the band is well supported by the serious talent of the members and great music they release. They put on a flawless performance, jamming on each song, and using silence to build tension for their epic crescendos. And with the inclusion of a brass section as backup, it couldn’t have gotten any better.

 

 

Sunday was a day I will never forget. It was filled with wandering, see-saw riding, picture taking, H&M tent chilling, sunset watching, great music and amazing friends. Here are a few jams in dedication to the best, most emotion-filled day I have had in a long time.

The Strokes- Under Cover of Darkness

Jack Beats- All Night (feat. John B)

Ratatat-Allure (Jay-Z & Notorious B.I.G.)

 

Last, but certainly not least, I have the honor of introducing the partnership between WEST LA CNCT and Veloce Hats! Veloce Hats is a Los Angeles based company fueled by the imagination of designer and founder, Cameron Picardi. Cameron has drawn inspiration from all aspects of the fast-paced city life to create unique, timeless designs.

Veloce Hats strives to support fellow startup businesses and artists of all industries. It understands a diverse city like Los Angeles has tons of creativity to offer, and that these up-and-coming innovators will lead the push toward the city’s artistic future. WEST LA CNCT is proud to debut the promotional video, “Our Summer Daze”, for the collaboration between tank top trend-setters, Once Youth, and Veloce Hats!
 

Check out all Veloce Hats has to offer HERE!

 

SPREAD THE LOVE. SHARE THE WEALTH. WESTLACNCT.

-Allione

The Jane Doze- Ain’t No Drugs High Enough (Ratatat vs Marvin Gaye)

11 Apr

Nothin’ like some good oldies mashed up with electronic music. Who knew Ratatat’s “Drugs” could work so well with “Ain’t No Mountain High Enough”! You can thank The Jane Doze for this!

The Jane Doze- Ain’t No Drugs High Enough (Ratatat vs Marvin Gaye)

 

SPREAD THE LOVE.SHARE THE WEALTH. WEST LA CNCT™

-TOKS!

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