Published on October 14th, 2012 | by Andy Whorehall3
ACL 2012 Day 2: Dry The River, Father John Misty, Neil Young & Crazy Horse Brings The Texas Rain
Austin City Limits Music Festival
Austin, TX - Day 2 of the Austin City Limits 2012 music festival was met with cloudy skies in-between scattered Texan rain showers and mud. Fortunately, the storms stopped before nightfall to ease up on the slippin’ and the slidin’ for double headliners, Jack White and Neil Young.
Dry The River‘s intimate sound carried well with an early afternoon festival audience after blowing away a sold-out crowd at Parish opening for Father John Misty the night before. People must’ve been too hung-over to talk over the band’s music that early in the afternoon, thankfully.
Father John Misty scored, again with a large mid-afternoon crowd because they fucking rule. Josh Tillman and his band of merry folk-rockers play the perfect hosts, performing songs from Fear Fun with comedy and slow-burn folk swagger.
Michael Kiwanuka played a soulful set through a southwestern downpour. Hard not to think about Bill Withers, actually. That’s a good thing for Kiwanuka and his band, hopefully it won over a new crowd of fans who stayed throughout the rain. Then, the mud came.
Punch Brothers performed their unimpressionable folk music sans percussion. They attempted to play bluegrass, and maybe they did, but their good looks couldn’t keep me listening or caring to. Blame it on the rain or the nice suits, I’ll try them out again down that lonesome London road.
BASSNECTAR‘s sound could be heard ruling over 2-3 stages towards the end of the day. Stating that it’s not music, or that it’s awful to hear dance / dub step / party music trumping other bands’ performances, would be too easy. The kids love it; but, the future is still fucked.
Neil Young & Crazy Horse played up against Jack White to headline day two. I chose Uncle Neil though one might have had a cleaner, comfortable seat streaming each show online at that point in a muddy, rain-soaked day. Opening with a barn-burning set of feedback drenched songs (Love and Only Love, Powderfinger, Born In Ontario, and Walk Like A Giant) apparently upset a whole lotta frat boys and their girlfriends that had gathered around me. Uncle Neil & the horse put down their electrics so that the great Canadian could play a solo set of acoustic songs they could sing along to, easing their drunk, annoying mouths from complaining.
OVERALL: Towards the end of Giant of The Land, Neil and his band mates crashed into a thumping, reverb laced heartbeat of noise that they dragged out, perfectly, for a good 5-6 minutes, resembling a giant’s footsteps. The morons around me, led by Captain Fratboy, were yelling, We get it Neil! Next Song! Obviously, they didn’t get it.
Everything I can’t stand about the human race, music festivals, and artists I love was occurring between the stage and those around me in that moment. I don’t feel like a better person after surviving day two in Austin because I can’t seem to get those f_____g jerks and their LOLOMG sorority girlfriends out of my head.
Thanks, Neil & Crazy Horse, I know y’all brought it but very few people were listening closely to a giant’s footsteps, right there in front of them.
Andy Whorehall (SM)
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