Sasquatch Music Festival
Saturday, May 28, 2016
The Gorge Amphitheater
By Andy Bookwalter; Photos Lynae Cook
On Saturday morning, the Canadians lost their drugs.
The Canadians aren’t a band, they’re actual Canadians camping next to me in the Sasquatch shanty town. I’m not sure why people from Canada need mood elevators in the first place – they’re already insufferably pleasant – but there you go. Someone should invent a drug that makes them angry and rude. (Or maybe they did and it’s called “beer?”)
Speaking of beer, how does someone get to a point in their life where they can spend $350 for festival tickets only to drink themselves into a stupor and spend much of the day leaning against a Honey Bucket as though it were a trusted friend?
I was glad I decided to split my time, because The Dip excelled with blue eyed soul reminiscent of pre-sucking Chicago and Brother From Another won with a set of throwback hip hop.
Somewhere in there the Beecher’s mac and cheese stand caught on fire more or less right in front of me. So long, lunch.
For some reason, actor John C. Reilly was hanging around this weekend too. He introduced Nathaniel Rateliff and the Night Sweats. Nathaniel is neither a garden gnome come to life nor a member of one of those earnest vest rock bands, but he kind of looks like both. He and his band are a Stax-style soul machine.
Next came another split set for me, alternating between Digable Planets and Shannon and the Clams (pictured at the top of this article.) The two groups are polar opposites, but paradoxically great. You can’t go wrong with classic hip hop or trashy, gold suit wearing garage rock.
I was surprised by how much I loved both bands. I’m a sucker for a huge bombastic stage show and neither disappointed in that regard. I also forgot how cool it is when the whole amphitheater fills with happy people. Screw you, stripped down punk rock played with integrity. Apparently I love overblown electro pop and EDM now. I want huge spotlights and techno dancehall!
A brief note on sleeping in an RV instead of a tent: there’s no comparison. No more crouching in the dirt eating under-cooked food like Gollum (or the Canadians next door), I made a huge breakfast and coffee…on a stove.