This Week in the Mercury


Monday, August 6, 2012

Some More Pickathon Impressions

Posted by Ned Lannamann on Mon, Aug 6, 2012 at 3:18 PM

We'll have just a couple more Pickathon wrap-ups in the coming days, along with some pictures, so apologies if you're feeling saturated with coverage. (I'm not that sorry, though. There's a lot to talk about.) Just a few more quick thoughts on the weekend:

Lake Street Dive. Holy cow. This group of New England Conservatory grads is faultlessly competent, jumping through hoops of soul and pop and gospel and jazz to come up with a fiery, clever, almost giddily good sound. They might rely on a little too much on boho-jazz cliches to be in complete sync with my personal tastes, but they're a young band and seem fearlessly capable of anything. Recordings do not do them justice—this is a band to see live. (For an idea, watch the video above.) Singer Rachael Price has an absolute knockout of a voice—she's going to be a huge star, and the other three members of Lake Street Dive are more than capable of keeping up (drummer Mike Calabrese and upright bassist Bridget Kearney—who's also in Joy Kills Sorrow—are also incredible vocalists). It was the band's first show in Oregon; don't miss their next one.

Bombino. The dry desert blues of this Niger group made an effortless transition to the lush, green forest at Pendarvis Farm, and the second of their Sunday sets was a trancelike, energetic revival meeting. (Their first set, at 11:30 am in the barn, was no slouch either.)

Other highlights: The War on Drugs and Shovels and Rope both did terrific sets on the main stage. THEE Satisfaction kept things moving in the barn despite heat so thick you could barely swim through it. And the Barr Brothers did another tremendous job last night closing out the Woods stage to what seemed like a thousand people. It was a great fest, as always—this might have been the best Pickathon yet. It felt like a feast to be gorged upon, and I'm paying for it now.

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