The third year of the biannual Boston Calling Music Festival kicked off Memorial Day Weekend. The Boston music festival is held every May and September. Boston Calling’s layout utilizes City Hall Plaza effectively and with two separate stages allow attendees to watch every act. Crash Line Productions transforms City Hall Plaza and for three days it becomes a place of endless music and celebration. The music began Friday evening and continued until Sunday night. A venue with views of skyscrapers, Faneuil Hall and the Atlantic Ocean. Boston Calling stands strong amongst well-known festivals such as Governors Ball, Coachella, Firefly, just to name a few. Unique for being a “city festival” each installment delivers variety of all-star artists.
Beck, Pixies, and My Morning Jacket headlined a lineup that included everything from indie rock, hip-hop, electro-pop, and country. St. Vincent, TV on the Radio, Tenacious D, Vance Joy, Ben Harper were among this weekend’s lineup.
Brian Appel (company’s cofounder along with Mike Snow) had said “I think we’ve got really great songwriters, plus a nice balance of heritage acts with up-and-comers who are all over mainstream radio, along with indie-rock darlings. It’s diverse and deep and not trying to appeal to one particular sect of people.” That’s what Boston Calling delivered this Memorial Day Weekend and past installments; “a nice balance of heritage acts with up-and-comers who are all over mainstream radio, along with indie-rock darlings.”
My Morning Jacket
My Morning Jacket ignited City Hall Plaza and probably the entire city of Boston with their blasting sound and on point performance. They played a strong set that included songs from the new album, “The Waterfall” from the opener, “Believe (Nobody Knows)” guitar jams and electrify lights filled the air. Jim James delivered the bands new and old songs perfectly. “In It’s Infancy” (The Waterfall) was another memorable tune My Morning Jacket played to the Boston fans. They had to adjust their usual set-list due to festival time constraints. The band got the crowd roaring when they ended the night with fan favorites, “Anytime” and “One Big Holiday".
Tenacious D (Jack Black and Kyle Glass) hit the stage with confidence and it was clear they were ready to have a fun, entertaining and comedic performance. They delivered just that, an entertaining set that had crowds dancing and laughing. They opened with “Tribute” and both played acoustic guitar backed by bass, electric guitar and drums the duo stuck to their standard playlist: ”Rize of the Phoenix", ”Low Hanging Fruit", and “Throwdown”. It was a performance that had me dancing to enjoyable music and with moments of laughter.
St. Vincent fronted by Anne Clark, who was stunning in a black leather dress and fishnet stockings. St. Vincent owned the stage with her ‘alternative bordering on avant-garde sound’. Clark’s guitar playing is out of this world, memorizing, and holding notes over the rhythm section in “Digital Witness” and “Cheerleader". Clark occasionally walked back and forth on stage in a gracefully robotic manner, while looking like a runway model. She kneels, poses, and even crowd surfed toward the end of the set. St. Vincent’s music, performance, and vibe will have me attending future performances.
Before the Pixies, who were the festival closing performance, organizers announced the lineup of the September Boston Calling. September 2015 will be headlined by The Avett Brothers, Alabama Shakes and alt-J. The crowd was cheering with excitement as the lineup was announced on the big screen. Boston Calling continues to deliver a variety of genres and artist each installment. September will sure to be another success.