Hot summer weather returned to Forecastle on its final day causing me to take things slow and rest up for my major musical event of the decade—the return of The Replacements. My laid back afternoon consisted of checking out small samples of several artists in between taking in the air conditioned splendor of the VIP tent.
First up was The Weeks from Mississippi who played some gritty rock sounds in the hot mid-day sunshine.
I enjoyed some soothing sound sampling from the duo known as Blue Sky Black Death under the cool shadow of the highway overpass.
Brooklyn-based Lucius had everyone thinking we were seeing double while we listened to their pleasant indie-pop.
Nashville rising star Sharon Van Etten mellowed things out a bit as the afternoon continued to heat up.
Brett Dennen drew a big crowd to the main stage and made me sweat just looking at him in his flannel shirt.
The acoustic jam band sound of Trampled By Turtles packed in a big crowd at the side stage that extended all the way back to the shade of the overpass.
Sun Kil Moon did their best to overcome the bleed from the main stage for a large crowd listening to their quiet eclectic sound.
Getting situated early for The Replacements gave me the added bonus of getting to see the full fine set by pop songstress Jenny Lewis with some guest accompaniment from local girls The Watson Twins. Ms. Lewis wins this year’s prize as the artist for whom I will now go and buy all of their records.
Finally it was the set I waited 23 years for. The only way The Replacements could have been any better was if they had let me pick the songs. Assisted by a perfect sound mix, Paul Westerberg led the Mats through a 90-minute mixture of their early punk and later pop showing how this band was a master at both. I hadn’t jumped and danced like this in years! Joining the band subtly as an added guitarist was Green Day’s Billie Joe Armstrong.
Wanting to get home early, we passed on headliner Beck who I had seen earlier in the week in Nashville.
Once again, the folks at Forecastle have put on a first class festival—fun, clean, organized, manageable and controlled are the words that come to mind. My only disappointment is that I now have to wait a whole year for the next one!