Portugal. The Man are having an outstanding summer so far. They are currently tearing across the country on a headlining tour that has involved stops at Red Rocks and Bonnaroo and will involve a swing through Europe this fall. The group gave what could only be described as a triumphant performance at The Farm this year. The four-year festival veterans took the late shift on Friday night and poured in one of the great all time Bonnaroo shows. When Portugal. The Man are in top form their distinct style of free flowing psychedelic rock creates an unbroken sonic plane that carries the audience along. Neither the band nor the audience were interested in any distraction from the proceedings. Stopping briefly after the first few songs, John Gourley paused only to say that they were there to play music and would continue to do so. There was no wasted time in this set. The performance started with a cover of Metallica’s “For Whom the Bell Tolls,” which segued into “Purple Yellow Red and Blue”. The one-two of these songs set the tone for the evening. This was going to be a rock show, which rarely turned introspective except for a wonderful singalong to “Don’t Look Back in Anger” toward the end of the night in dedication to the victims of the Manchester bombing. PTM were joined by Danny Clinch for a couple of songs and then closed out the night with Cage the Elephant helping them through “Don’t Look Back in Anger” and “Feel it Still”. You can check out the full performance below:
In addition to their great performance at Bonnaroo, PTM also released their newest record Woodstock the week after the festival. This album is an interesting step forward for PTM after scrapping the record Gloomin + Doomin that was slated to follow up their 2013 release Evil Friends. This new record is a revelation. After the relative heaviness of Evil Friends there is a lightness in tone if not in content that carries this record. The first single “Feel It Still” is one of the great songs that FTM has written. So much so that it received a reprise at Bonnaroo and several of the shows on the new tour. It is an exciting scorching throwback funk piece that just works. It’s impossible not to move to this tune. As a whole the record contains an awareness of where PTM has been and where they are looking. There is a fair bit of joy in these songs that has been absent in their music for a while.
It is great to see Portugal. The Man back on the scene and at the top of their game especially in a space like The Farm where their shared history with the festival can give their new music the room to grow before a sympathetic audience.
To Do This Week
Tonight check out Black Marble at Gasa Gasa or The Company Stores at Tips. Also you can catch Proper Channels with Harbinger Project at the Circle Bar. Tomorrow Naughty Professor is the Free Friday performance at Tipitinas. Saturday you can catch Mipso at Gasa or Tony Hall at the Maple Leaf. Sunday Joe Crown Trio plays the Leaf as usual. Wednesday KILL and Peucharist will be at Siberia.
To Listen This Week
- New music from the Cold Specks via Youtube
- Amazing new music from Public Service Broadcasting (their new record is going to be a beast) via Youtube
- Check out Jeff Tweedy’s solo acoustic version of “I Am Trying to Break Your Heart” via Rolling Stone