Today in Music: June Festivus

The Flaming Lips celebrate at Bonnaroo
photo by Paste Magazine

June is full of festivals, some marred by weather, some patrolled by buzz kill cops, and some featuring scary Disney fans. Here’s the lowdown:

The four-day 2007 Bonnaroo Festival wrapped on Sunday. When The White Stripes left the stage after a raucous performance (read about it on Spinner), hipsters got a head start out of the parking lot on jam band fans while Widespread Panic closed the final day. That kind of dichotomy has characterized this festival, which until a few years ago was more hippy than hip — where else can you choose between Gov’t Mule and Girl Talk? Despite one unfortunate tragedy, the festival made positive headlines on the blogs:

  • Talk about shooting fish in a barrel: the Tennessee Highway Patrol brought traffic to a halt on Thursday as they searched cars for weapons, drugs and other contraband. Product Shop NYC, one of the early posters, had this picture of the scene. Check out the poor bandanna-ed jam fans waiting hopelessly in the background. Over 80 citations and a dozen arrests — yeah, I’m sure they found a lot of weapons.
  • Spinner vs. Spin: who had more coverage? Judge for yourself. But also go to Stereogum for great Bonnaroo pictures.
  • While many of the independent bloggers are still shaking off the hemp-induced haze of the weekend before hitting the keys to write their reviews, Cable & Tweed had full coverage of all four days, with pictures and reviews of Spoon, Cold War Kids, The Police, Gogol Bordello, and a whole lot more.
  • Across the pond, as they say, the Meltdown Festival, curated this year by Jarvis Cocker, kicked off with Motörhead on Satuday. While the acts differ significantly from the Bonnaroo lineup (Saint Eteinne, Cornershop, Iggy & The Stooges), they too are a disparate bunch. According to Cocker, the idea was that “by combining things that shouldn’t be combined, by looking at things from a different angle, by the use of extreme volume and frequencies… we shall rouse you from your slumber.”

  • Of the already eclectic lineup, perhaps the most strange combination was last night’s “Forest of No Return,” a tribute to the vintage songs of Disney with Jarvis and “special guests,” who turned out to be Nick Cave, Shane MacGowan, Pete Doherty, Beth Orton, Bryan Ferry and Baaba Maal. You can see the whole setlist here, and go to Intermezzo for some quality shots of the performance, like this one:
  • meltdown5.jpg
  • Tonight, Roky Erickson, of the 60’s psychedelic band 13th Floor Elevators, will make is first UK performance, well, ever, following last night’s screening at the Royal Festival Hall of the documentary about him called You’re Gonna Miss Me. Read a review of the movie here and learn more about Erickson here. And if you’re unfamiliar with his music, here’s a sample, hosted by I Am Fuel, You Are Friends:
  • Roky Erickson – You Don’t Love Me Yet (MP3)

  • Later in the week, Devo, Sun0))), The Jesus & Mary Chain, and others perform.
  • Unfortunately, the Heineken Jammin’ Festival in Venice was cancelled due to stormy weather. The BBC reports that 20 fans were injured and vehicles were overturned at the site, where bands including Pearl Jam, Smashing Pumpkins, and Aerosmith were set to perform. Pearl Jam, who had seen a fan tragedy before and who were about to perform soon after the cancellation was announced, said in an official statement, “We’re told that there are no critical injuries and for that we are grateful. Our hearts and thoughts are with all of you in Venice.”

    Rain, but not stormy weather, is in the forecast for this weekend’s monster Glastonbury Festival. NME thinks it wise to stow your bumbershoot when you go out to see Arctic Monkeys, Bjork, Editors, The Chemical Brothers, The New Pornographers, Pigeon Detectives, Mark Ronson, Spiritualized, M.I.A., Trentemoller, Coldcut, and the list goes on and on and on. A lot of flooding could happen while you’re waiting! Here are a few tracks to keep you dry:

    Arctic Monkeys – You Know I’m No Good [Amy Winehouse cover] (MP3)

    Modest Mouse – Invisible (MP3)

    Cold War Kids – Heavy Boots (MP3)

    The Little Ones – Lovers Who Uncover (MP3)

    The Young Republic – She’s Not Waiting Here This Time (MP3) 

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