It was another great year for the BUKU Music + Art Project. First off the expansion of the grounds was a fantastic addition to the festival. The new placement of the Power Plant stage in the field in front of Mardi Gras World has effectively opened up several of the bottlenecks that have existed previously. The new space really shines when one of the headliners manages to draw a large number of attendees at once. As Bassnectar took the stage on Saturday night you could feel attendees really settling into the new vibe.
As usual, BUKU was an eclectic mix of excellent musicians and artists. One of the things I really enjoy about this festival is the smaller pop up performances that take place around the grounds between sets. With the expanded format, it was easier to find and enjoy these moments (see pics below). Despite having a few issues with cancellations that were beyond the organizers’ control, the weekend was a rousing success. The weather held out and everyone was in good spirits.
Fleet Foxes at the Orpheum
After returning to the scene last summer with their third record Crack-Up, the Fleet Foxes dropped into the Orpheum on Monday night for a beautifully orchestrated evening of music. While the set list was a bit heavy on the new record for my taste, there was a generous smattering of standouts from their first two efforts. It is interesting that the Foxes seem to be going through the same process of discovery we watched LCD Soundsystem traverse a year before. What does it mean to reform as a band and how do we balance the successes of the past with where we find ourselves now? James Murphy and company were able to negotiate these trials successfully and it would appear that the Fleet Foxes are well on their way as well. There was a palpable joy in the crowd at being together in the presence of this excellent artistry. I’m fascinated to see where they will go from here.
Shame at the Hi-Ho Saturday
This time of year we get a lot of folks from South by Southwest dropping through town. On Saturday London post-punk ensemble Shame drop into the Hi-Ho on the tour for their excellent debut record – Songs of Praise. This should be an outstanding intimate show. Spanish rockers Hinds are along as opener. This is a great one-two of emerging indie music. Check out the video for “One Rizla” below.
To Do This Week
Tonight and Saturday Béla Fleck will join the LPO at the Orpheum for the debut of the piece he wrote for the city’s tricentennial. Friday BeauSoleil Avec Michael Doucet will be at Music at the Mint and Tommy Stinson will be at Siberia. Saturday you can catch Billy Iuso at Tips and Shame at the Hi-Ho with Snail Mail. Sunday The Glorious Sons are at Gasa. Monday is the Bowie tribute at Tips. Tuesday Albert Hammond Jr rolls into One Eyed Jacks with the Hinds. Wednesday at the Square this week is Walter “Wolfman” Washington with Johnny Sketch and the Dirty Notes.
To Listen This Week
- The Decemberists are streaming their new record via NPR’s First Listen
- New Collab from Vancouver Sleep Clinic and Raury via CoS
- Dr. Dog get ready to release a new LP with preview “Buzzing in the Light” via Youtube