2012 Sasquatch! Music Festival: Friday

Bumper to bumper. (Erin Flanagan/treeswingers)

Next to a trip to the dentist or paying a phone bill, waiting in line is definitely high up there on the list of most dreaded every day trials. The first day of the 2012 Sasquatch! Music Festival was filled with waiting in lines. We were stuck in traffic on the freeway. Then, we were waved into another line to get into the campsite. And there we waited. And waited. And waited.

The first hour in six miles of bumper-to-bumper traffic was tempered by a sneaky beer–or four. The second hour was marked by festival-goers dashing into the fields around us to relieve PBR-filled bladders. By the third hour, most had resigned themselves that they would be missing Poliça and Santigold, stranded in single-file purgatory.

As it turned out, lines were a recurring theme. Concert attendees stood in queues for ages to pick up their wristband. Rows upon rows of people lined up for the evening’s headliner, Pretty Lights. And come 8 in the morning on Saturday, thousands of weary campers stood in lines that snaked around the porta-potties.

Read our reviews from Friday below…

Little Rainbow Riding Hood. (Erin Flanagan/treeswingers)

STRFCKR  delivered an excellent set of their danceable electro pop. The Portland-based band formerly known as Starfucker took to the stage in mismatching outfits, with one member decked out in a multicoloured hooded shawl, while another appeared in a buttoned up head-to-toe black. Needless to say, the inflatable dolls flying around the crowd were not the only flailing limbs, as the crowd danced and sweated throughout STRFCKR’s set. The all-male group rounded up their set with their popular 2009 cover of Cindy Lauper’s “Girls Just Want To Have Fun.” The face-painted and glow-sticked crowd joined in to shout out every word, proving that girls aren’t the only ones wanting a good time. Those that missed STRFCKR the first time could also catch them on Saturday as they filled in a last-minute cancellation on the bill.

Boy conversation. (Erin Flanagan/treeswingers)

What is most admirable about Girl Talk, the stage moniker for Gregg Gillis, is that he doesn’t seem to give a shit about musical credibility. Not only does the 30-year-old producer rip his samples from popular music, he also appears completely unconcerned with pushing the envelope of what’s going on in music today. Ten years since the release of his first mashup album, Girl Talk is still making tracks by mixing top 40 songs into a danceable combination of quick-fire hip-hop and pop snippets. As the sun went down yesterday, Girl Talk took to the stage in an all-white ensemble sweatshirt/sweatband ensemble, looking more like an aging Swedish tennis star than a DJ. He dropped “Get Ur Freak On” straight into Notorious B.I.G.’s “Juicy,” he mixed 50 Cent’s “In The Club” into “A-Punk,” he conquered. Despite the influx of copycats (see: DJ Earworm), Girl Talk’s charm prevails because he manages to tick off every song people want to hear when they’re drunk–and the crowd loves him for it.

The cause of the hold up. (Erin Flanagan/treeswingers)

Explosions in the Sky were, as always, a standout act. When the ambient rock band took to Sasquatch’s Bigfoot stage they didn’t hold back, playing out most of their sixth studio album Take Care, Take Care, Take Care. Performing with a Texas flag hanging over an amplifier, the Austin natives were surprisingly animated, moving around and swapping instruments, with guitarist Munaf Rayani substituted his strings for a set of toms at one point. The lack of lyrics did not perturb their hardcore fans, who headbanged along to every dramatic build up and erupting cymbal rolls. Occasionally their set descended into a wall of distortion, and there were moments when drummer Chris Hrasky’s double-pedal got lost in the racket. But despite these setbacks to sound quality, the band brought an energy the crowd lapped up, whether they were upfront dancing or lining the Gorge.

Purple Haze. (Erin Flangan/treeswingers)

Never have we ever seen as many glow sticks as during Pretty Lights’ set. By the time Derek Smith, the lone man behind Pretty Lights, took to the stage, the festival’s revelers were ready. Smith had apparently been having as much fun as the crowd, tweeting earlier in the day “I was just dancing on stage with @Santigold at @Sasquatch!!” (#humblebrag not included). As Pretty Lights’s squelching bass wobbled out across the Gorge, the crowd launched hundreds of glowsticks, lighting up the crisp Washington air like confetti at a wedding rave. If dubstep is over, someone forgot to tell Pretty Lights or his fans, who lapped up every drop of his raucous electronica as though Skrillex never happened.

-Natalie and Erin

Treeswingers’ Top Three

Pretty Lights – I Know The Truth (download)

Explosions in the Sky – Trembling Hands (download)

STRFCKR – Girls Just Want To Have Fun (Cyndi Lauper cover) (download)

Follow us on twitter at @Treeswingers.

2 responses to “2012 Sasquatch! Music Festival: Friday

  1. Pingback: 2012 Sasquatch! Music Festival: Saturday | treeswingers

  2. Pingback: Outside Lands Music And Arts Festival 2012 Preview | treeswingers

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