Last saturday, thanks to our friends at PBR, our favorite block on Larimer Street between 27th and 28th were barricaded for a day of thirst quenching beer and stellar music. Festival goers shuffled from two stages right in the heart of our beautiful city. Meadowlark, The Larimer Lounge, Cold Crush provided sets of both national, and local bands featuring Colfax Speed Queen, Flaural, The Knock, Felix Fast4ward, and Dragondeer. The crowd estimates were bigger than last year, leading to believe that this festival is here to stay.
With a cold, frosty PBR tallboy in hand we headed over to the first set. Twin Peaks set off the day with their high energy beachy, british rock sound. If Cage The Elephant and The Kinks had a baby out would come a fresh little Twin Peaks. The three front men traded off lead singing each song yet their vibe didn’t seem to alter between. Don’t see that every show!
The small but steadily growing day crowd was herded over to the opposite stage by badass female rocker duo, Deap Vally. We saw these ladies at SXSW and gah zamn, can they own a stage. “Smile More” and it’s hard grunge vibe had us teen angst head-banging in delight. One of our favorites of the day.
Considering Noname was a No Show, our local friends, Monteneros took over in place and it was no longer bummerville on the Lazer Horse Stage. The local boys saved the day with an exceptional cover of The Pixies “Gigantic”.
STRFKR hit us hard. Literally. Our crowd surfing astronaut made his way over to us and we may or may not have dropped his ass. With our beer soaked sneaks, we danced through our favorites and the lesser known rest. I think we were all a bit distracted by the hot dogs and pickles flying about. A rousing rendition of “While I’m Alive” set off confetti and inflatable penises and pizza. Yes we said penises and pizza, picture that for a moment.
Oh you wanted to mosh? Our boy Danny Brown had ya covered. Although much more subdued this time than his normal self, Brown still managed to encourage crowd sing-a-longs and participation with his tongue in cheek approach to his recognizable rap flow.
The festival was so great that we even had time to fit in a nap and a burrito during Kurt Vile’s set. The slow indie, melodies weren’t in the cards for us, maybe because we weren't stoned. The rest of the day was high energy and high spirits, that he didn’t quite mesh with the line up. Maybe we’ll catch ya at Coachella 2018, Kurt.
The Phantogram team was in full force as Sarah Barthel and Josh “Fucking” Carter made the crowd sing and dance to their catchy hits and awesome display of showmanship. We even got a glimpse of Leroy (Sarah’s famous Instagram dog) on the side rocking out. Hits such as “Black Out Days”, “When I’m Small” and “Fall In Love” had us dancing with our neighbors in the crowd. Phantogram is currently on tour with Tycho so make sure you check them out at a city near you!
It’s one thing to see legendary performers, it’s another to get to see them in such an intimate setting. This was our second time seeing Ice Cube and while he didn’t bring out the members of NWA, he did manage to take us down memory lane with his recognizable street anthems. Ice Cube with his intimidating presence (although you may have lost a bit of that with the Are We There Yet? movies) and Westside hand gestures made everybody in the audience feel like a gangsta even if it was for a brief second.
Words by Kelly O'Keefe and Robert Castro
All Images courtesy of Robert Castro. All Rights Reserved!