Iggy & the Stooges Free Press Summer Fest, Eleanor Tinsley Park June 2, 2013
The official closing band on Saturday at FPSF was the Postal Service, but for those of us who know how much even mellow indie-rock like the fare played by Ben Gibbard et al. owes to Detroit madman Iggy Pop, he and his Stooges were the climax of the day's events.
A crowd gathered around the Neptune Stage to pay tribute to the grandfather of punk and as soon as he stepped onto the stage, we went through a time machine. Though he looked his generation, his voice told a different story, screeching out just as powerfully and dangerously as it had 40 years earlier.
The Stooges opened with "Raw Power," a fitting motto for their live act. Gray hair aside, no one had lost a step instrumentally. In case anyone had any doubts, though, they were slapped in the face late in the set as Iggy danced and howled his way through a two-times faster version of "I Wanna Be Your Dog," which also featured a stunning instrumental workout mid-song to showcase the band's skills.
The group and its front man were on fire throughout their set, blazing through old songs and material from this year's Ready to Die album with a fervor that matched and surpassed even young punk rockers like Houston natives American Fangs earlier in the day.
Speaking of those new songs, how did they stack up against the old ones? Well, judging by the audience's reaction, they fit in just fine. Regardless of anyone's feelings on their newest record, the Stooges' new songs certainly have the raw, live-wire energy to keep the audience on their toes.
Most importantly of all though, this show was just fucking fun. Between Iggy's antics, the onstage dance party he conducted during "Fun House," their classically raucous sound, and electrifying energy, they could have played just about anything and kept everyone captivated.