It seemed a fitting way to wrap-up Bumbershoot, with Krist Novoselic from Nirvana joining Scottish band The Vaselines on stage for a version of "Jesus Wants Me for a Sunbeam," the song Nirvana played on their MTV Unplugged performance that brought The Vaselines wider acclaim in its wake. As he did on the cable network in 1993, Novoselic played accordion on the song, though some 20 years later, the lanky bassist traded his black accordion for a red one, his unkept hair for a baseball cap and his clean-shaven face for a full-on beard. But it was a nice moment, and certainly one of the highlights of the festival, especially taking place on the Sub Pop stage, and with Bumbershoot being one of just four U.S. dates for The Vaselines this year. Check out more highlights after the jump.
Ty Segall rocked the Sub Pop stage with his loud garage rock, his non-corporate haircut and his corporate Mexican beer shirt.
In the KEXP Music Lounge, Passion Pit played a mellow, tuneful set, with singer Michael Angelakos switching between acoustic guitar and keyboards. The band played songs from their two records, including their latest, Gossamer. The last time they played a KEXP event, Angelakos said, it was incredibly awkward. "Go watch it on YouTube," he urged. "We just look around at each other uncomfortably."
Syrian musician Omar Souleyman performed traditional Middle Eastern songs in Kurdish and Arabic, only with an electronic beat. He also looks a little bit like a Sacha Baron Cohen character.
New York's The Pains of Being Pure at Heart played their sunny brand of punky indie pop, which seemed a perfect fit for the day's gorgeous weather.
Stoner comedian Doug Benson performed a live edition of his Doug Loves Movies podcast, with special guests Rhett Miller of the Old 97s (who play the Showbox tonight), as well as a handful of comedians whose names I didn't catch.
The Wombats had one of the youngest crowds of the day, and also one of the most female. And though he may not have said anything heady, something about singer Matthew Murphy's Liverpudlian accent sure made it sound that way.
One of Monday's major highlights was the set from Low, the long-running Duluth, Minnesota band who, as their name implies, are just as subdued live as they are on album, with their slow, methodical pop songs and the striking male-female harmonies of singer-guitarist Alan Sparhawk and drummer Mimi Parker.
I tried to see Lights, but the schedule I printed from Bumbershoot.org on the day of the show didn't make note of her change in venue or set time with Fujiya & Miyagi, whose opening notes signaled I was in the wrong place at the wrong time.
The Fishbone of 2012 may not be the Fishbone of 1992, but the band, and particularly singer/saxophonist/harmoniumist Angelo Moore (who doesn't seem to have aged even a little bit in the last 25 years), are still tearing it up - and still hustling. When I ran into Moore after his set walking the festival grounds, I complimented his performance (and his fez). His response: To open his messenger bag and say, "I've got solo CDs for sale. Wanna buy one?"