Ed. Note: We're not done yet...
Chris Gray: I think the quickest way to sum up Summer Fest, environmentally, is in fact biologically: In eight hours at the festival Saturday, hydrating continuously with mostly water, I made my own water once, shortly before Beirut. Sunday, in seven hours on only water, I did not see that horse until well after I had gone to Leon's Lounge to piece together my thoughts and pick over The New York Times.
Saturday, my musical blue ribbon goes to Rusted Shut's Don Walsh screaming "Kill! Kill! Kill!" for several minutes (or what seemed like several minutes) over lurching Frankenstein guitars and Ralf Armin's wandering tenor sax. This was going on at the same time as, high on a hill up above, Buxton was enchanting dozens of doe-eyed fans with an otherworldly blend of Bill Monroe and Bright Eyes.
There was more - Big Boi's double-time barrage of OutKast hits, some chosen by the crowd; Indian Jewelry's chopped-and-screwed approach to droney dance music (was that Blondie I heard?); Black Joe Lewis & the Honeybears' scorching soul, bumped up to a gospel plane by Dallas' the Relatives - but those two bands, at precisely the same time, made a perfect microcosm of both the city and Summer Fest: It's a big, sprawling motherfucker riddled with pockets of psychosis and beauty.
Houston: You're soaking in it. Strap in.