Yeah Yeah Yeahs, Vampire Weekend Rescue Rainy All Points West With High-Energy Sets

August 1st, 2009 by Christopher R. Weingarten Leave a reply »

Photograph by Alex Reside of

“I know it’s not easy to dance when you’re holding an umbrella,” said Vampire Weekend’s Ezra Koenig, essentially summing up Friday’s rainy, muddy, bleak, All Points West Festival in New Jersey’s Liberty State Park. After the rain turned the grassy festival expanse into a bog pockmarked with tiny lagoons, gooey mud obstacles and the stench of liquefied goose shit, the goal of every band would simply be to try and boost the spirits of a shivering, soggy crowd.

(Check out photos from the ground in our All Points West gallery.)

The rain came down in bucketloads around four in the afternoon, distracting comedian Arj Barker from his set. “This is fucking ridiculous,” he said, before asking his water bottle, “You know anything about this, you son of a bitch?” Colorful New York indie-dance troupe Ra Ra Riot responded fast by bringing more energy than their audience, who was busy navigating all the new puddles that surrounded the stage. The band hopped around and played indie-rock versions of tent-revival rave-ups, complete with violin. Dry and perpetually happy, singer Wes Miles remained optimistic, trying his damndest to engage the crowd. “I guess it’s not as wet as it could be,” he said, clearly unprepared for the raspy heckler who shouted, “That’s what she said.”

(Read our report on Jay-Z’s epic headlining set here.)

The only stage covered by a roof became a popular hang-out (though not as popular as the covered “beer garden” tents). Canadian-Australian Xavier Rudd was turning out gospel-tinged blooz, using a Jules Verne co...

Article Source: Rolling Stone : Rock and Roll Daily


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