Bonnaroo time has arrived once again, and after a few logistical malfunctions – so have I. I got on site yesterday afternoon and was welcomed by the always hot and muggy weather of middle Tennessee in June. Because of this, I didn’t hit Centeroo or the day’s activities until later in the evening.
My first stop was the Adult Swim Ragbag of Jollification. It’s midway carnival games at Bonnaroo, with the awkward twist that only [adult swim] could put on carnival games. I’ve wanted a midway carnival at Bonnaroo for years. I mean, how awesome is it to play putt-putt or ring toss at Bonnaroo? Let me tell you, it’s super awesome. The best part is that all of the games are free and if you win you get stuffed animals of the likes of Stewie and Bryan from Family Guy amongst other prizes.
[Dethklok's Wheel of Deth]
My musical journey of the weekend started with NeedToBreathe. They kicked off for a great night of music with their hit song Something Beautiful as well as a couple of covers including Tom Petty’s You Wreck Me and Zeppelin’s When the Levee Breaks. After checking out most of NeedToBreathe’s set, I made my way over to That Tent to check out Temper Trap. They managed to pull off an epic version of Sweet Disposition to open the set. Temper Trap impressed me but I wanted to give a band that I had no preconceived notions about a chance so I opted to check out Mayer Hawthorne & the County at This Tent. I arrived just in time for a cover of ELO’s Mr. Blue Sky. The song was fun but honestly I don’t think I’m a fan of their original material. At least I gave them a chance, which has become a tradition of mine for Thursdays at Bonnaroo. You never know what you can find the first night.
READ ON for more from Jennifer on Thursday at Bonnaroo…
For the final show of the night it was Lotus time. I’ve been a fan of Lotus since the release Germination, but I’ve never had the opportunity to see them live. This show was my highlight of the evening. I was completely blown away by their electronica version of Crazy Train that came out of left field. Flower Sermon was phenomenal and I was utterly entralled with the intricate play between the guitarist and the drummer. Umbilical Moonrise was uplifting and beautiful. The crowd ate up every bit of it. A fantastic way to wind down the day.
Overall, the Thursday experience was good save one issue. Bonnaroo added the Lunar Stage this year. It’s a stage that features Rock Band (where you can actually play on the stage) and hosts DJ music at night. The Lunar Stage is situated between This Tent and The Other Tent. The problem is, the sound from that stage bled to both stages and sounded like complete shit. It was so bad, I found myself completely stage left for Lotus, but could still hear the music pumping.
You can hear it to the right of This Tent as well. Completely annoying and I think perhaps further ruined my experience for Mayer Hawthorne. Bonnaroo, if you’re reading this: please turn that stage down. It can’t be that hard, everything that’s being amplified from that stage is only ultimately running through two channels. If you’re going to have it next year please consider an alternate location. I really hope it’s adjusted for the late night tonight because if any music bleeds into my enjoyment of Hall & Oates classics, I’ll be more than upset.
Alright, that’s enough logistical bitching from me. I’ve got to head out and go see music!