Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Eagle Rock Music Festival

This past weekend was the 9th Annual Eagle Rock Music Festival, and I can say unequivocally that this was the most fun I've had in the longest time and all in all, it was SUPER entertaining.

But that's not even the punch line. Here it is: IT'S FREE, peoples!!!

Now, before I get into more, let me give big ups to the LA denizens. There must have been 100K swarming the fest, in every nook and cranny. Colorado is on a slope, so that when you're at the eastern most portion of it, you can look back down, and it was a teeming swarm of humanity. It looked like a mini Woodstock west!!!

Okay, with that outta da way...


1. It's advertised at 40 bands
2. It covered at least 5 or 6 blocks long
3. There must have been at least 10 stages/music venues. It was unbelievable...
4. Some of the acts JP saw:
a. Dengue Fever
b. Black Shakespeare
c. The Mama Suki
d. Hecuba
e. The Sirens
f. The Curs
g. "Special Guests"

Bummer: I missed Jessica Fichot, but think I might've lost patience with her in the end.

I thought the punk stage was the most entertaining and clearly was my link back to the halcyon LA of the 80's. The Sirens - an all gal Latina band - was kicking it pretty good, and the Curs were the most musically inclined, had the best sense of humor and displayed the most intelligence of the night. Surprisingly (pleasantly so) they were young kids blending punk and rockabilly in a power trio with an upright bass, quasi surf dos and matching blue leotards. But the most fun was watching the mosh pit - the look of glee on their mugs...

There was one lowlight; Dengue Fever is one of those hybridized, LA fusion bands that hipsters fall all out over. I hate "Morning Becomes Eclectic" but imagine they're a big hit there.

They're alright - long on gimmick, short on ... well, you get it. I mean, they're entertaining for about 15 minutes but you definitely get their schtick within seconds, at which point it becomes how much you can tolerate. Hey, I'm Asian, and I can only take so much of tinny, whiny, nasally vocals. I must say though that the contrast between lead singer Chhom Nimol and bass player Senon Williams is a riot - he's about 2 feet taller.

They were one of the headliners on the main stage and were churning ahead, when out of the corner of my eye I saw them: CRAZY WHITE LIBERALS!!!

As DF were in the middle of one of their patented Farfisa-led jams, these stupid broads sashayed across our proscenium, doing this goofy faux belly dancing, mimicking Chhom Nimol's hand movements and the like. Yeah, I called them stupid broads but trust me, I want more.

On a side note, the LA Weekly, that ode to everything "me" that is SO my city, was running on the very same night their own fest in downtown. It looked very mersh, as The Minutemen used to say. (SHOUT OUT: Mike Watt, now with The Stooges!!!) With this one event Eagle Rock, their Center for the Arts and the City of LA supports a lot of indie bands, the local merchants have a field day and the community has a great event.

So, minus the dose of Orientalism, let me say that if you love indie music y'all need to mark your calendars for next year.