Austin City Limits

Drenched In Blog: Arcade Fire, Back Door Slam and Butch Walker Rule ACL Fest on Saturday

Click here for a slideshow of Saturday's action.

I heard from a photographer buddy that the first aid tent was running out of band-aids. Why? Because so many of these buffoons decided to wear brand new shoes to an outdoor festival. When it’s one hundred degrees out and my testicles are sweating, I couldn't care less what my shoes look like.

Speaking of photographers, those guys are a seriously weird crew. All nice guys, but some of them in the media tent have a crypt-keeper, Igor vibe. If you sit too close to their cameras, they get all cranked up and look like they are about to cry. Look, pal. Even if I wanted to steal your camera, I wouldn’t even know how to turn it on. And at that, those things are sometimes as big as toddlers.

On Saturday, a buddy from Vegas and I milled around to catch as much music as we could. Back Door Slam still shocks the shit out of me, seeing that they like are all 18 years old and jam like a Double Trouble. Butch Walker and the Let's-Go-Out-Tonites play jangly power pop that is sweet as the Amy’s Ice Cream that goes for twenty dollars a cone just a few feet away. This is the super producer's side band when he’s tracking Avril Lavigne and the All-American Rejects. At one point, Butch told us to “treat it like it’s a rock concert from 1977.” And he damn near succeeded.

A lot is going to be written about the Arcade Fire’s night-closing set, so I figured I would put in my two very elated and dumbfounded cents. They put on one of the best and most life-affirming shows I will ever be witness to. Never since the funk guys in the 70s has a band been so symbiotic with each other. It was scary and soothing, because we the audience were in well-mannered hands. “Ocean of Noise” was a stand-out, with the sound of Win Butler’s voice seemingly echoing all over the concert grounds and bouncing back up to the clouds. The stage show included red LED lights, eerie projections and ghostly voices coming from all over. The Arcade Fire is one of the best live bands going right now. It’s just a shame it takes a drive to check them out these days, but those trips back are made all that more triumphant.

Today, I’m aiming for DeVotchKa and some My Morning Jacket at night. Then, some old dude with a moustache is closing out the show. I don’t see the appeal. A lot of love songs and a harmonica. Whatever...... -- Craig Hlavaty

Click here for a slideshow of Saturday's action.

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