Tonight in Seattle:  

Bumbershoot day 2: check-in and open thread

Raphael Saadiq photo by Jason Tang

Update: I took down my crappy cell phone photo of Raphael Saadiq because superstar photographer Jason Tang just uploaded an awesome one.

So... How's Bumbershoot for you all?

For day two, I had a busy day, running from show to show. My schedule put me from The Kindness Kind to Spencer Moody's literary program, The Enablers Have Spoken, to The Yeah Yeah Yeahs to USE to Raphael Saadiq in the KEXP lounge to Sleepy Eyes of Death to my apartment for a brief break and back to Bumbershoot for Raphael Saadiq again.

I enjoyed everything I went to, but seeing Raphael Saadiq twice was the definite highlight. In the KEXP Lounge, he and his full band was in uniform, in suits looking sharp for a radio appearance. Both sets were full of Motown-era soul backed by a tight and funky band (two backup singers, a trumpet, saxophone, guitar, bass, drums and keyboards). He is such a charismatic performer that you believe all of the love the audience had for him was mutual. He played for ninety minutes, including two encores, because the crowd didn't want to let him leave. My favorite thing he said (actually, I think he said it both at the KEXP Lounge and on the Fisher Green Stage) was that he wrote his song "The Big Easy" as a tribute to Hurricane Katrina victims and said that the people of New Orleans like to party when they mourn.

Today, I'm most excited for Metric, but have another full day of running between stages.

{Photo by Jason Tang.}

Raphael Saadiq was amazing! Everyone in the band could be a star on their own. Put them together and BAM: brilliant!
This is the only day of Bumbershoot that I went to-the other days didn't have enough to offer for me. I was geared up Sunday morning to get soaking wet all day, but it actually turned out to be not that bad. Saw some of Hey Marseilles which was pretty good, saw all of Mt St Helens where some kid decided to start throwing corn tortilla shells around like little frisbees. That went on for about 20 minutes. Parenthetical girls and Romance in the sky church was really cool. Chris Estey even got a little shout out from parenthetical girls. Also caught all of No Age in the auditorium hall which was good but the sound in there is not so great.

I think the highlight of the day for me though was Holy Fuck just after dark at the broad street stage. I saw them open for Wolf Parade several years ago and forgot just how good and danceable their shows are.

Helio Sequence was also good as usual, but it was a little weird how hyped everyone got over all the Keep your Eyes Ahead tracks. I guess that album was a lot more popular than I thought.

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