Thursday, July 26, 2007

Paleo 2007, Wednesday

After the concerts and mud of Tuesday, Wednesday is when Arcade Fire and Bjork are lighting up Paleo. The sunny day dried most of the mud, although in some places you could still step in mud. But in general it was much better. Also because the sun was out.

I got there around 19.30 and headed straight to Chapiteau to see Clap Your Hands Say Yeah. I have their first album and they do sound good on CD, the singer sounding a bit like Thom Yorke. But on stage, his voice is really high-pitched whiney and with two Telecasters wrapping up his whiney voice, it just became irritating. I left Chapiteau and headed for a beer and some food instead.

Got a great spot to watch Arcade Fire, about 10 meters dead center in front of stage. The stage looked already full of clutter, there was a pipe organ, couple of keyboards, and some helmets. Arcade Fire came on stage and for an hour and a half I was transfixed. They were amazing, one of the best concerts I've ever been to - if not the best. Arcade Fire on stage is like watching a circus. But not a circus full of clowns and animals, a circus full of magicians and athletes doing the most amazing things. Only 1 member is not a multi-instrumentalist (the other girl), everyone else played at least 3 different instruments during the gig and they all sang as well. Even the drummer played keyboards on one song and guitars on another. Sometimes it feels like it was turning into chaos and just when they were at that tipping point, they brought it back to order without losing that sense of chaos. It was absolutely wonderful, totally mesmerizing. And the music is fucking awesome as well. Bands like Arcade Fire are what good music is about, and they are here to save the world from manufactured over-hyped acts. Honestly, if ever there is an Arcade Fire gig near your place, be sure to go.

Then Bjork ended the night. As always, she is weird and wonderful. This time she wasn't backed by a proper band. Instead she uses a DJ playing a funky thing that looks like a big iPhone, a programmer, a keyboardist, a percussionist (beating the smallest cymbal I've ever seen) and an Icelandic horn sections (The Wonderbrass). As expected, Bjork came in an outfit that doesn't make sense. A red dress/cape thingy, with half her face painted blue and green. She sorts of flapped around the stage while singing. And her songs were either very slow and mellow or hard with big beats. Her voice is amazing and she uses it very well, but maybe after Arcade Fire my standards have gone up a lot.

I just read somewhere that Arcade Fire and Bjork share the same management. Interesting.

Anyway, that was it for me for Paleo this year. No drunken disorderness this year. I will do it next year with a vengeance!


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