Incubus, The National, Silversun Pickups Launch Outside Lands

August 29th, 2009 by David Downs Leave a reply »

Photo: Kravitz/FilmMagic

The first-day festivities at San Francisco’s massive Outside Lands Festival in Golden Gate Park offered a model mega-fest environment. A ballet of buses, bikes and walkers kept transportation flowing as smoothly as the free water, and the abundant, cheap food and booze. Thirty-six bands on seven stages drew at least 25,000 throughout the day and the weather proved pitch-perfect.

Outside Lands in photos: Pearl Jam, Incubus, Built to Spill and more.

Incubus lead singer Brandon Boyd couldn’t escape the curse of being a vocalist on the main stage of Outside Lands opening night. Where headliner Eddie Vedder had a tickle in his throat, Boyd had a frog. Standing at the center of a band renowned for its larynx-driven histrionics, Boyd could only plead with the boozy crowd to sing along to “Stellar” and “Drive” as he hoarsely half-sung the notes. Touring their best-of album Monuments and Melodies, one had to respect the Calabasas, California chart monsters — blown out voice and all — for delighting the ebullient crowd, who basked happily in the mid-70-degree sun.

“Anna Molly” and a mangled Prince cover had Boyd drinking red wine right from the bottle. “I told my friends I was sick and they all said the same thing. ‘Get drunk,’ ” he said. “If I lose my pants by the fifth song, don’t hold it against me and don’t tell anyone.” The pants stayed on, no one looked offended and Incubus fought through their one-hour set without killing anyone’s buzz.

As a counterpoint, Brooklyn post-punk quintet the National turned in a broody, cryptic and riveting one-hour set mid-afternoon on the second stage, augmented by a brass trio that included French horn. Vocalist Matt Beringer, clad in a smart grey suit, cut a stark figure amids...

Article Source: Rolling Stone : Rock and Roll Daily


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