You know a weekend is going to be great when you’re already anticipating for the week to be over on Monday at one in the morning. Whether you’ll be attending the annual Mifflin Street Block Party, hitting up capitol square for the weekly fresh market, or kicking back and watching a Star Wars trilogy (preferably the original one), there is no shortage of funtivities available for Madison citizens this first weekend of May.
And while all of these funtivities are respectable means of entertainment in their own right, I want to highlight the weekend event I will be attending: Revelry Music and Arts Festival. DISCLAIMER: I am in no way being prompted to write this feature by any member of WUD Music. I chose to write this feature because it’s music related, it’s Madison news, I love music, live concerts are awesome, and I want to give those that are or may be going a small preview of what they can expect out of the musical talent at the festival. So let’s get to that. I am going to give my short, unarticulated opinion of the artists that were highlighted in the wonderfully crafted video below. Here goes nothing.
Toro y Moi - Contrary to what your initial reaction may be, Toro y Moi is actually one man. And he may be one of the chillest men I’ve ever heard on a track. For starters, he combined both the Spanish and French languages to create his stage name. It doesn’t matter as long as it translates to English easily (Bull and Me) and sounds cool, right? Beyond this, his calm vocals and looped electronic beats are combined to him consider him a part of the genre known as chillwave. It doesn’t get any more chill than that.
Hoodie Allen - One of my close friends has been a Hoodie fan well before the Revelry lineup was released, and since its release I have hopped on the bandwagon hard. His All American EP was only $5 on iTunes, and provides eight solid tracks that exemplify his catchy music and smart lyrics. In addition, his newest mixtape Crew Cuts is on his website for free! Outside of his music, the former Google employee and UPenn Sprint Football player has collaborated on comedy videos with CollegeHumor that are just too funny to only watch once.
Phox - This seven-piece band from Baraboo, Wisconsin utilizes instruments that run the gamut of sounds, resulting in songs that are most often whimsical, but can also be hectic and heavy. No songs particularly called out to me, but there’s no doubt that the band is unique.
The Mowgli’s - While the only music I could find of theirs was the five songs from their Love’s Not Dead EP, this pop-rock octet has an established pedigree with a recent performance at SXSW 2013 and a scheduled performance at Lollapalooza 2013. Their eight-person chorus is extremely catchy, and “San Francisco” is an irresistible summer jam.
Chance the Rapper - Chance the Rapper is definitely a different sounding hip-hop artist, with a significantly higher voice than your typical MC. His second mixtape, Acid Rap drops tomorrow, so hopefully Madison will be receptive to his new material come Saturday.
Delta Spirit - This band has a strong alternative rock sound, and many of the songs I listened to have the feel of a live show even though they’re master tracks. I trust that their live performance will be nothing short of a great display of musical talent. In addition, they have a song on the official first volume of The Walking Dead soundtrack, so I am sold.
Julian Lynch - Chill, instrumental, and articulate all at once, Julian Lynch’s music gives off good vibes. With a Ph.D. in ethnomusicology (!?) from UW-Madison, I think concert attendees will give the former city resident a warm reception.
Oh Land - Hailing from Copenhagen, Denmark, Nanna Øland Fabricius serves as singer, songwriter, and producer, for her music. Pianos and an extensive palette of electronic sounds make for a plethora of experimental tunes for Oh Land to sing over. It will be interesting to see how her music translates to a live performance.
So there you have it: A preview of the biggest acts that Revelry has to offer. It would seem that there is a little something for everyone in the festival’s first installment, and I couldn’t be more excited. Here’s to the joys of live music, summer, and the continued success of this festival for years to come. Revel on.