Why We Get Up Early
There is something special about this indie-psychedelic dance-rock, or whatever you call their music, band from Brooklyn. Their music is fun, intriguing, and intricate. Their energy competed with any act all weekend. Individually, band leaders Alex Toth and Kalmia Traver met as music majors in Vermont and are diverse in their musicianship, including trumpet, saxophone, flute, keys and much more. The rest of the band only adds to surprising level of talent and cohesiveness that comes from this young group. Traver should easily be the next Karen O, as her voice seems to be on point no matter what the type of song they play, ranging from upbeat dance music to slower indie ballads.
The small 12:30 crowd tripled in size within minutes, literally creating one of the most intrigued and captivated crowds of the festival. Highlights included hits “Sound of Erasing” and “Oragami”, which garnered a huge participatory response. The set ended with the entire band grabbing an instrument and marching through the crowd, ending near the soundboard, and performing in the middle of their fans, both old and new. They are fun, but they also are intelligent musicians and songwriters. Making their festival rounds this summer, Rubblebucket should be put on everyone’s list. Word will get around. – MM
TV on the Radio
Never seeing TV on the Radio live before (which surprised me when I realized this), I was highly anticipating their afternoon set on the Surf Stage. Their a band to watch up close, as these great musicians know their instruments well, and create incredibly unique progressions. Tunde Adebimpe’s voice is still uniquely strong, and is able to carry his often fast and deliberate lyrics seamlessly. The songs from the new album, Seeds, continue their individual style, such as “Careful You” and “Trouble”. Crowd favorites, “Wolf Like Me” and “Golden Age”, proved that this band has a following wherever they go. TVOTR was perfect for Hangout, as they attempt to bring those band that diversify and create innovation in modern music. TVOTR will always have a following because of their accomplishment of just that. – MM
Nice to See Ya Again
My Morning Jacket
Back in 2011, My Morning Jacket were given one of the sunset slots on the secondary beach stage, and it was a show that many of us never forgot. Following the release of Circuital, this was the first time that MMJ truly proved to us that they are worthy of big stages and headlining slots. Fast forward four years, and we found ourselves excitingly waiting for MMJ to begin their second sunset show at Hangout, following their latest release Waterfalls. The set began with album opener, “Believe (Nobody Knows)”, and we knew it was going to be a great performance from the start. “Believe” is the perfect song to open a set with, as Jim James belted the chorus out into the Gulf. Other tracks off the new album, including “Compound Fracture” and “Tropics (Erase Traces)” are as strong as anything MMJ has written. “Tropics” brings that perfect mix of haunting melodies, deep lyrics, and a deliberate build-up that makes the band so unique and successful.
One of my personal favorite MMJ tracks, “Phone Went West”, had every couple in the crowd dancing and all die-hard fans belting the chorus as loudly as they could. The set ended with “Touch Me I’m Going to Scream Part 2” and “One Big Holiday”, which were obvious crowd favorites, delightling those who may not be too familiar with the new album just yet. Although James may have not been as active as normal, the band proved once again they are not a jam band, they are rock and roll, with intricate lyrics and complex compositions. This set was for the My Morning Jacket fan (with 7 out of 14 songs from the new album), and that’s exactly what we love. – MM
Beck Hanson and crew were genuinely surprised at the energy of the crowd after the third song of the last and most well attended set of the weekend. A chatty Beck wore a Cheshire grin as he said something to the effect of “OK, Hangout, nobody told us it was going to be like this. The kind of festivals we’re used to, it’s a bunch of mud, a bunch of rain, a bunch of Porta-Potties. This is like paradise, right here…You guys are turning it out tonight. We’re going to meet you on that.”
Over the next hour and a half, the band tore through a greatest hits set that featured the loudest sing-a-longs of the weekend.
Beck may have been the last headliner billed on the t shirts, but he was the only unopposed act at the festival and proved to be the best of the main stage closers by a wide margin. A twenty minute version of “Where it’s At” with solos from each member of the band within gave way to all three night’s allotments of fireworks (it had been too windy for the theatrics on the previous two nights) and Hangout 2015, the finest installment of the fest since 2011, was a wrap.
If this year was any indication, Goldenvoice’s (Producers of Coachella and Stagecoach) presence in the booking process will provide more up and coming acts, which is the reason why we go to festivals. If the lower Alabama crowd discovered a few acts on this year’s bill, they may be more inclined to take a chance on purchasing tickets in the future with that in mind. And if Hangout turns in to Coachella (with a little Stagecoach in the mix of course, due to the geographic location of the fest) on the beach, you won’t find any complaints here.
Preservation Hall Jazz Band