Saturday, August 7, 2010

Lolla: Some kind of '90s vortex

I just got done watching Blues Traveler. I picked them because (this is weird to admit) the band's album, "Four," was the first album that I ever bought. I've listened to it countless times and I could probably draw the cat smoking a doobie from the cover by memory.

Anyway, I'd never seen them live before, so it was pretty cool. They also drew an enormous crowd, the largest I've seen for a non-headliner so far.

Here's where it got very cool, but very weird. After starting with "Run Around," the band went into a cover of Sublime's "What I Got." It was actually pretty faithful to the original, but John Popper added plenty of harmonica.

They worked through a bunch more originals replete with a lot of jamming and solos. Then they started playing something familiar, but I couldn't place it. A few words in, I realize it's Radiohead's "Creep," except with Popper's soaring vocals and a kind of reggae jam beat fueling the song.

Then they ended with "Hook."

Frankly, I felt kind of like a teenager. Every one of those songs made me want to check my phone and make sure I hadn't stumbled into some weird '90s wormhole. It was very cool.

Before that, I caught the Soft Pack, who made the kind of slacker/surf rock you might have heard in a '50s movie with the title "Super Beach Summer" or something equally cheesy. Not bad, but not great.

Then I saw Rogue Wave, who I saw a few weeks ago in Omaha at the Waiting Room. It was pretty much the same sunny, poppy rock with thoughtful lyrics that they did in O-town. Except this time it was in front of 10 times more people.

* * *

I missed the Morning Benders earlier. Oh well. I'm going to head across the fest to see The xx right now. Hopefully they're a little more lively than the last time I saw them.

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