Adam Swiderski

Comments from Adam Swiderski

I'm surprised to see people saying he sounds like garbage in larger live settings. I saw CSH at 4 Knots in NYC and it was a pretty great set by my lights.
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August 19, 2016 on Car Seat Headrest – “Does It Feel Good (To Say Goodbye?)”
I was at the Panorama performance, and I'm pretty sure that Sia's vocals were live. Also, I really enjoyed the show. No, Paul Dano wasn't actually on stage, but some pretty talented dancers were, and the effect of watching the pre-recorded video syncing absolutely perfectly with the live dancing being done on stage was pretty cool.
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August 18, 2016 on Israeli Fans Sue Sia Over Short Concert With No Banter
Who do I have to massage to get Governor's Ball to book them next year?
+2 |
August 7, 2016 on Watch Muppet Band Dr. Teeth & The Electric Mayhem Play Their First Festival At Outside Lands
I got so flustered, I spoke in absolute gibberish.
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August 1, 2016 on Watch Sharon Van Etten Cover The Squidbillies Theme Song
Welp, looks like I'm going all-in on my massive crush on Sharon Van Etten isn't going anywhere any time soon.
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August 1, 2016 on Watch Sharon Van Etten Cover The Squidbillies Theme Song
That's all totally fair, and I did read those reviews as positive, but measured. For me, a lot of my impression of the post-festival buzz came from the Panorama sub on reddit: https://www.reddit.com/r/panoramafest I've been frequenting it both prior to the festival and in the past week, and I was struck by the turn in sentiment. The two weeks leading up to fest dates were full of skepticism and negativity, and the past week, and particularly the talk in the "what did everyone think of the festival?" threads, has been fairly glowing. It's a distinct and significant turn-around. Admittedly, that's only a small collection of a couple dozen active users who take the time to actually post, and none of them are professionals paid to analyze these things objectively, so it's all to be taken with whatever grain of salt seems appropriate. It was just a pivot in sentiment that seemed significant, to me. Anyway, all this just by way of explaining my POV...and none of it by way of saying I don't see where you're coming from. I find these articles and this discussion really fascinating (I was a music journalist, myself, back in the day, so I geek out over this kind of talk), so, you know, thank you very much for providing your insight and a forum for that.
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July 30, 2016 on Countdown To Extinction: An Update From The Front Lines Of The Festival Wars
I know it's probably annoying that I'm refuting a lot of the things you say up and down the comments, and please know that I'm doing it with all due respect for the work you put into these articles...but Schoolboy Q was an outlier rather than the norm, artist reception-wise. Look at what he says in that GQ article - he was prepared for the heat to dampen the crowd, and he got a self-fulfilling prophecy for his troubles. Meanwhile, other hip-hop sets from the likes of Flatbush Zombies, Flosstradamus, Run the Jewels, A$AP Rocky, and, of course, Kendrick Lamar, were reportedly, as the kids say, lit...or is it turnt? I don't know - I'm old and out of touch.
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July 30, 2016 on Countdown To Extinction: An Update From The Front Lines Of The Festival Wars
Oh, sure, that's absolutely true if your interest in the festival lineup is limited. But, like, last year, I averaged about 6 sets a day at GovBall. Over three days, that's 18 bands, which comes out to around $17 a band, all told, if we're sticking with $300 as the theoretical price. That's pretty cheap by NYC standards, and while not every one of the bands was top tier, all the shows were at least good and at least a couple were excellent-to-transcendent. Given all that, it felt like an economic win. Of course, that would absolutely diminish the fewer bands I cared about in the lineup, so I understand what you're getting at. I'm not sure what the threshold would be in terms of number of artists I'm interested in seeing relative to price - so far, that ratio's been balanced enough for every festival I've attended that I haven't had to think about it.
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July 30, 2016 on Countdown To Extinction: An Update From The Front Lines Of The Festival Wars
Can I ask: Why does GovBall having locked up early June implicitly mean Panorama is stuck in late July? Is there some sort of restriction by the city in terms of the proximity of two events like this in the same location (I'm genuinely asking, as you've obviously researched this a great deal)? What's keeping AEG from pursuing mid-June, or late June, or even early July? And that's assuming they stick with Randall's as a location - their failure to land Flushing Meadows last year doesn't mean they'll necessarily fail this year, does it? They're a big company with deep pockets; surely, they can afford to try again, especially now that they've proven to the city that they can organize and conduct an event of this nature. I don't know; as I said in a lot more words in a comment down-thread, ticket sales were bad, this year, but word of mouth was almost universally good, and I can't see Panorama not experiencing at least some growth next year from an audience perspective, even in the event that they end up stuck with the same date and location. And if they do manage to finagle a better option, climatologically speaking, that can only help matters.
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July 29, 2016 on Countdown To Extinction: An Update From The Front Lines Of The Festival Wars
I think it's less a sucky experience at festivals that has the potential to kill things, and more the fact that there's so much homogeneity in lineups these days. I mean, Bonnaroo is its own experience in terms of atmosphere, but I had no incentive to travel there from NYC when just about everybody on the card was going to be playing at either GovBall or Panorama.
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July 29, 2016 on Countdown To Extinction: An Update From The Front Lines Of The Festival Wars
Then you're missing out, IMHO. I go to shows in the city all the time, and I love it, but I've been to GovBall the past 3 years, and the experience of a really good festival day out on Randall's tops just about anything I've seen at a single artist show, with a few rare exceptions.
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July 29, 2016 on Countdown To Extinction: An Update From The Front Lines Of The Festival Wars
This is another great, well-written article, and I find the whole story fascinating...but I have to say that, admittedly not having done the research you did, and with all due respect, I think some of the things you say about the way things went down this year for both GovBall and Panorama come off a bit hyperbolic. I'm not sure the landscape is quite as bleak for either as you describe it. For one thing, while I'm sure GovBall would have preferred not to cancel Day 3 and issue refunds, aren't they pretty heavily insured against just this sort of thing? Given that, aren't the financial losses not likely to have as big an impact as you've made them out to have, here? What's more, while the Kanye near-riot was something of a debacle, it's not something for which GovBall can be held responsible in a legal sense, so all that really comes out of it for them with their target audience (read: not people who read the New York Post and tut-tut at the antics of someone like Kanye) is a massive amount of tangential publicity, especially since they now have him locked for The Meadows - i.e., "Look at how crazy people are for this artist...AND WE'VE STILL GOT HIS ONLY FESTIVAL GIG THIS YEAR." Meanwhile, it's accurate to say Panorama was undersold...but I think saying it landed like a brick isn't accurate, either. I mean, financially, maybe, but in terms of buzz and word of mouth coming out of the festival, everything I've seen, read, and experienced has been EXTREMELY positive. People have praised the lineup, the performances, the way the festival accommodated for the heat with indoor activations like The Lab and Despacio, and the way the entire thing was organized and run. If anything, that impression was helped by the low ticket sales, as a lack of the kind of overcrowding that can plague GovBall was repeatedly cited as one of the more pleasant things about the experience. That's kind of a dubious honor from AEG's perspective, to be sure, but the overall general impression I've seen coming out of the festival is almost universally a good one, and that's with AEG having done what felt, leading up to the dates in question, like not really all that much promotion and advertising. They basically, as you say, enacted a backup plan when the Flushing Meadows thing fell through, kind of took a bath financially, but demonstrated to the festival-going NYC audience that they could (and this is speaking conservatively) competently pull it off - and, if anything, the reaction I'm seeing and reading to the actual performances is much more effusive than anything I saw coming out of GovBall. The single biggest universal complaint about Panorama, overall, was the heat, but if you think AEG's going to stand pat in late July with this thing after the whole HEAT DOME experience, then I've got a bridge in Brooklyn to sell you. So, from where I'm sitting, and, again, admittedly not having access to the financials of either company, this doesn't look like a bubble-bursting summer for NYC festivals. If anything, I think we're set for another, possibly more pitched, battle heading into next year, between two companies that have every incentive to prove something to the ticket-buying audience. If I were a betting man, I'd lay money that AEG will try to move Panorama to another date or location, which would surely help them build on this year's positive buzz...but they won't have the booking advantage they had over GovBall this year, now that Founders can offer multi-fest packages with LiveNation's backing. GovBall, meanwhile, is stepping up to the table with LiveNation money for the first time, which kind of erases some of the bad aftertaste from this year's debacle (and if you think people will hold a grudge and just not go if Founders puts together a killer lineup this year, you've more faith in the American attention span than I do), but it's also going to raise expectations through the roof, and Panorama raised the bar on the NYC festival experience in a couple of ways that GovBall is going to have to match if it wants to compete. I don't know. Honestly, I think it's a toss-up, but I'd say both parties in question are going to have a lot more to offer before their particular bubbles burst.
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July 29, 2016 on Countdown To Extinction: An Update From The Front Lines Of The Festival Wars
It was my first Radiohead show last night, too. We lucked into West GA because my girlfriend is in the fan club. And I now have no face, because it was completely melted off. I regret nothing.
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July 27, 2016 on Watch Radiohead Play “Let Down” For The First Time In 10 Years
I'm surprised to see Schoolboy Q on this list. I heard that he walked off stage with 15 minutes left in his allotted time while also slamming the energy of the crowd - which he then followed up with a straight-up dis on Twitter. Seems kind of lame to bust on a crowd for lack of energy when you're performing in the middle of the afternoon in 95-degree heat - like, you're lucky those people are even standing up.
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July 25, 2016 on 5 Memorable Moments From Panorama 2016 Friday
LCD Soundsystem vaulted into probably the top 3 festival concerts I've ever seen, and might make it to the top with some time to reflect. It was amazing, and the crowd was so into it, and the energy was just through the roof. Also, it bears mentioning that it was one of the best *sounding* concerts I've ever heard - whoever does the engineering for them should win some sort of award, because everything was clear and balanced and sounded great, and when there's so much going on, such as in the big freak-out during "Yeah," that pays huge dividends.
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July 25, 2016 on 7 Memorable Moments From Panorama 2016 Sunday
This was an excellent read, and I'm really looking forward to the full book. One thing, though - the billionaire mayor who's convinced he's a king may be gone, but the transformation of the city described in "New York, I Love You..." has only picked up its pace in the past few years. Gentrification has become hyper-gentrification and neighborhoods don't even go through a "artsy and edgy" phase, any more - it's straight to condos and the 1%. If anything, the stuff Murphy's talking about in "New York, I Love You..."/making fun of in "Yr City's a Sucker" is even more true now than it was when the album was released.
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June 22, 2016 on Read An Excerpt From The New 33⅓ Book On LCD Soundsystem’s Sound Of Silver
Yeah, I was really looking forward to this announcement, but the lack of one big rock act hurts. I mean, don't get me wrong, I enjoy hip-hop and I'm excited that I'll get the chance to see Chance the Rapper, but it would've been nice to have at least a little bit of variety in the headliners.
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June 21, 2016 on The Meadows Festival Brings Kanye, Chance, Grimes To Queens This Fall
Aw, man, I'm not a NYC snob like that. It's more that they were in a headlining slot - well, playing opposite the headliners. And I've seen them play before, at Hammerstein Ballroom, and it was transcendent. I was just hoping for that level of experience, which is what the Bonnaroo set sounds like. I never claimed to be above jealousy. :)
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June 13, 2016 on 13 Memorable Moments From Bonnaroo 2016
I watched the M83 live stream and couldn't help feeling a bit bitter. They put on a great show at Governor's Ball...but capped it at 13 songs, just over an hour, despite being in a slot that allowed them, like, 90 minutes to play. 'Roo got 3 more songs than we did, including "Wait," the song I most wanted to hear and which had been in almost all their other sets...and all this after standing in a monsoon for 90 minutes. It's hard to be totally thrilled and also really disappointed by a show, but that's where I found myself that night. This set looked absolutely amazing.
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June 13, 2016 on 13 Memorable Moments From Bonnaroo 2016
Oh, man, you missed some good ones: - Black Pistol Fire in the Bacardi tent on Friday. Only the second set of the fest, but holy crap, they killed it. At the end, the singer/guitarist smashed his guitar and threw the neck and body out into the crowd, separately. The crowd was eating their stuff up. - I have never seen a band happier to be on stage than Misterwives. I was kind of in a funk when we got there, but they won me over big-time. - Catfish & the Bottlemen brought it. I had never heard of these guys prior to their announcement as part of this lineup, but they really knew how to play to their audience and brought a ton of energy to an afternoon slot that easily could have been sleepy. - Christine & the Queens. I don't think a lot of people knew what to make of them, but what a weird and awesome show. - The Miike Snow dance party during the Saturday night monsoon was beautiful.
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June 6, 2016 on 9 Memorable Moments From Governors Ball 2016
This is what is hurting me the most at the moment.
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June 5, 2016 on Governors Ball Cancels Day Three Due To Weather
God, this sucks so much. GovBall is like my musical church every year, filling me with inspiration for all the stuff I'm going to play for the year to come. To have it cut short like this, especially with such a killer lineup on Sunday, is like Christmas being cancelled.
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June 5, 2016 on Governors Ball Cancels Day Three Due To Weather
Amazing...if it happens. Doors are delayed for today and with thunderstorms forecast ALL. DAY. LONG. I wouldn't be surprised if the entire day gets canceled. Which makes me really, really sad, because I had such a blast the first two days, even with last night's deluge.
-1 |
June 5, 2016 on Prophets Of Rage Performing Surprise Set At Governors Ball Tomorrow
No "John Wayne Gacy, Jr." makes this list totally invalid. I know it's a downer, but seriously, it's a master class in songwriting. To take a subject like that and speak so eloquently about it in a way that humanizes the individual in question while not in an form shying away from the monstrosity of what he did amounts to a ridiculous degree of difficulty, and Stevens pulls it off beautifully. And then you throw in the haunting music and arrangement...I mean, I wouldn't say it's perfect, but it's really, really close.
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May 26, 2016 on The 10 Best Sufjan Stevens Songs
This and Gord Downie's cancer in the same day...it's too much.
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May 24, 2016 on Neil Young OK With Donald Trump Using His Music: “I Got Nothing Against Him”
I was introduced to the Hip during a long-distance relationship with a girl who lived in Newmarket, and "Nautical Disaster" was the first song of theirs she played for me. I was hooked, immediately.
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May 24, 2016 on The Tragically Hip’s Gord Downie Has Terminal Brain Cancer, Plans One Last Tour
This. I was digging the album, in general, but when I got to that song...mind = blown.
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May 23, 2016 on Watch Car Seat Headrest Cover Radiohead & Sufjan Stevens In Philly
I'm so glad he said this, because I keep seeing people posting this video and saying stuff like, "LOOK AT PRINCE DUNK ALL OVER EVERYONE'S FACES ALL THESE OLD STODGY WHITE MUSICIANS ARE SO PISSED." Watching the video, it was fairly obvious to me that wasn't true - you can see Petty mouth "Wow" at one point - but people need a narrative, I guess.
+19 |
April 29, 2016 on Tom Petty Reminisces About Prince’s Newly Viral Rock Hall Guitar Solo