A look back at Bumbershoot

Was I really seeing this! A bird’s eye view of a Bumbershoot bum rush at the Key Arena! People were flailing from every direction! Each time someone made it through the security blockade the crowd of thousands above would roar with encouragement. It was a frightening and unbelievable sight. Young, uninhibited idiocracy at its very best. Whoa whoa whoa…rewind Nicole. I guess I should start from the
beginning.

I had a chance to see four of the top ten that I had listed last week. They were all as great as I expected they would be. The Cellar Door was the first show of the day at the Mural Amphitheater, a stage that I remember seeing Modest Mouse play on in 1998 at a free festival called “Pain In The Grass.” It’s a great stage with the Space Needle as a backdrop (perfect for photo opps), and there were plenty of great
bands to hit it this year. The Cellar Door was no exception. They did a rendition of a traditional hymn that Allison Krauss popularized in The O Brother Where Art Thou soundtrack called Down To The River And Pray that made me tear up. The emotion was partly brought on by memories of my grandmother, but mostly because they nailed it. Their innocence and shyness shone through like sparklers, perfect for
families with children on all American holidays.

My favorite act of the day followed The Cellar Door on the same stage, which I thought was funny considering the two bands are like night and day. Although is Reignwolf a band? It seems to me Jordan Cook, aka Reignwolf, can do just fine on his own outside of the pack. He can play a full drum set and guitar at the same time! My Facebook friends are probably totally sick of me making comments about this guy, but come on…there is no doubt he will be huge on an international level very soon. The way his hair looks perfect no matter how sweaty and windblown, the way he falls into the crowd guitar in hand, the way he stumbles over the drum set to perform multi-faceted, which by the way wasn’t all that smooth, but who cares! He’s Reignwolf! So freakin cool! See him. He will be playing at the Laserdome (Wow! Lasers and Reignwolf? Awesome!) come October for the City Arts Festival.

After Reignwolf there was a lull. The next band on my list wasn’t for another hour and a half, so I decided to catch one of the headliners who I happen to enjoy, M83. They were pretty fun from a distance. I can only imagine how great they would have been if I were up front…and eighteen years old. Ha! After witnessing what I so impatiently explained in the above intro, I waited until they played their radio hit and snuck out early to see Mr. Omar Souleyman. I knew he would be fun, but I wasn’t expecting this many movers and shakers from all walks of life! It was a pleasant surprise actually, to see indie rockers, hippies, and small town juvenile degenerates all dancing and clapping away to his eclectic sound; diversity on all levels. I was up front snapping pics and dancing right along with them. It was my exercise for the day. And I have to give props to the guy on the synthesizer, he was generating quite a mix at lightening speed.

Lastly (and for lack of better end phrases) but certainly not least was Bryan John Appleby. Sometimes it’s difficult for me to enjoy a band live if they don’t stray too far from their studio version, which is what happened here. But Bryan John’s vocals are so sweet that hearing him live exactly the way I heard it at home was a treat. His aesthetic style is reminiscent of my Dinosaur Jr. days, with his brown sweater

and tattered polo underneath. The act itself was a comforting and soothing end to an exhausting yet eventful day.

-Nicole Starr is a music blogger for The World Is Fun.