Hot outdoor summer festivals tend to be pretty miserable, and a festival with so many great bands lined up to play as the 2003 Siren Festival had this year ñ I wasnít expecting to enjoy it all that much. Once I finally got there and saw The Kills, I realized I was in for a lot more than I bargained for.
The Kills took the stage around 2 p.m. and had plenty of technical problems. During ìFuck The Peopleî someone backstage fucked The Kills, apparently unplugging the drum machine. Hotel (guitar, drum machine) even commented that "the sound (at this show) should go into a museum for worlds worst sound." I think he was a little cranky, because to the crowd everything sounded great, and got better as the sun went down.
I give the most exciting stage show to !!!. This 8-piece indie funk band from scenic Sacramento took the stage with power and managed to keep it (and build it up) even with a 10-minute pause while the police and security guards had to clear a walkway within the crowd. Toward the end of their set they all got out their supersoakers and sprayed the crowd, much to their appreciation.
On the Stillwell stage Ted Leo and his band of Pharmacists brought the crowd to their pogo dancing best with some of the most energetic mod punk rock around.
Radio 4 followed Ted Leo and called all enthusiasts in the crowd to jump up and disco no-wave the night away.
The sun was bright and the heat was on, but the crowd was great for all the sets I got to see. The back of my neck may be sunburned, but I will take it. If that is the price I pay for the best free outdoor live music festival Iíve ever seen, Iíll take it.
(Bob Ladewig during Modest Mouse about to hug David Cross)
Source: Bob Ladewig