by Adrienne Fisher, edited by Erik van Rheenen
Here’s the thing about attending a great fest against the natural elements of the world – it brings people together. All of a sudden, everyone has something in common, bonded together by a sense of “man, this sucks” as rain pisses away on your day or a cold breeze cuts into the hoodie that you thought would protect you from the low 50s. Hugs from an acquaintance linger on as you try to retain warmth or remember the simple comfort of another human’s touch in the face of a miserable weather day. And complaining suddenly isn’t something to be looked down on – because everyone’s bitching about how cold, wet, and muddy they are.
Don’t get me wrong – the fest has been awesome, and the shared sense of solidarity regarding the elements has somehow only supplemented the experience. While Friday’s events were showered in rain that just would not let the fuck up, yesterday’s gripe were the muddy, quicksand-like grounds that remained in its wake. The sprawling fields of mud laid out in front of the stages made getting to the bands you wanted to see a little bit of a challenge, and god forbid you had shoes on that weren’t actually tied to your feet. But to have an excuse to commiserate with a stranger about how they, too, felt like they were in an Indiana Jones movie getting through the mud to the barricade for the Get Up Kids? Priceless.
In addition to detailing the shared sense of togetherness in the face of weather adversity, I also did what any good festivalgoer would do and, you know, saw some bands. I started my day with Connecticut’s favorite emo cult The World is a Beautiful Place and I Am No Longer Afraid to Die, who riled up a considerable crowd of gangly punks to the opening of “Heartbeat in the Brain,” despite the overbearing presence of their new spoken-word collaborator (because why wouldn’t a band with 8 people in it already need someone to do spoken-word?). Philadelphia’s Restorations was a big source of excitement for me, being that I view them, in the most professional sense of the words, as “so, so, so fucking awesome.” And awesome they were, ripping a few new songs amidst their other flawless material from LP2.