A Review of Bumbershoot Day 2, a.k.a. the Day Kehlani Reincarnated TLC

Kehlani shines on the Starbucks stage at Bumbershoot 2015. Photo by Marcus Shriver.

Day 2 of Bumbershoot was gloomy and angsty. The bands were a little darker than a normal Bumbershoot line up. With bands like Brand New, Faith No More, and Social Distortion Saturday felt about a decade late. For the most part, the day was sleepy and weird, and it felt like everyone was just waiting for it to rain so they could have a valid excuse to leave.

After a full day of the gloominess I really only have two things that stuck out. One is really good, and one is really bad.

I’ll start with the good.

Kehlani was perfect. Coming out in an all grey jumpsuit similar to Andre 3000’s at Sasquatch in 2014, Kehlani owned the stage. She is not only an amazing singer and rapper, but she is a fantastic dancer. Watching her and her two dancers (the same dancers in her music videos), I could do nothing but be reminded of TLC. The power, the attitude, and the vibe that Kehlani gave off reminded me of everything TLC, and I loved it so much.

There were three highlights of the show. The first was when she performed her song “You Should Be Here.” The whole crowd knew the song. Her dance moves were perfectly integrated in to the song and really, I think the whole crowd fell in love. The second highlight was when Kehlani took one of her male groupies and analyzed the modern fu**boi for us all from head to toe. It was all I’ve ever hoped for in life. As if this wasn’t enough, in the middle of her set she also did a very short cover of “Legend” by Drake. I was mesmerized. I think I would rather see Kehlani play a set of Drake songs then see Drake play a set of Drake songs.

The second thing that stuck out on Day 2 was the awfulness of the Punch Brothers. Before the show I actually liked the Punch Brothers; I believe I even recommended them in my preview of Bumbershoot this year. I thoroughly apologize if you listened to me and saw Punch Brothers.

Don’t get me wrong, they are all extremely talented musicians. They are probably all classically trained and they played some of the fastest synchronized melodies I have ever seen, but they were BORINGGGG. Along with their talent on their instruments they also had immense talent in boring me. With that much talent how do none of their songs have emotion?!?!?!?!?! The singer has one tone to his voice and if I were to describe it with a color it would be beige. They were the Beige Five. He has boring lyrics that are complimented by overly complicated instrumentals that are clearly just there to show off how talented each band member is. WE GET IT! YOU ARE WHITE, WEARING SUITS AND YOUR PARENTS PAID FOR LOTS OF VIOLIN LESSONS WHEN YOU WERE YOUNGER. I don’t care. This band is clearly full of themselves. Their onstage banter was not personal, but rather it was bougie and uppity. This band really made me hate them at Bumbershoot. Please never come out in full suits and try to play uppity bluegrass again, I didn’t appreciate it.

I went to a bunch of shows but few of them, to me, anyway, are really worthy of an in-depth review, save for Kehlani, Punch Brothers, and Zedd (keep reading). The day was just one big “eh” of mostly unremarkable performances. Faith No More, the headliner of the day, was “eh.” Maybe two decades ago it would’ve been a bigger deal that they were there. I mean, Nirvana’s very own Krist Noveselic said that Faith No More was one of their big influences. Like what? No. Just no.

Moving on to the good. So everyone, it seemed, was at Zedd by the end of the day. KeyArena was jam-packed. I’ve been fan of Zedd since the earlier days, before his two huge singles came out in 2013 and skyrocketed him into household-name status (“Clarity” and “Stay the Night” with Hayley Williams). I used to blast him in the car driving home from school. So yeah, even if it makes me a total frat-music worshipper, I don’t even care. I unapologetically love Zedd. But, at the same time, I was a little nervous. Because if Zedd wasn’t everything I thought it’d be, what would happen? The world might fall apart.

But luckily enough, the world did not fall apart. In fact, it got even better. We were blessed last night, because Zedd delivered a dance party unlike any I’ve ever been to. The energy in the room was truly beautiful. Everyone was dancing together and it didn’t look like there was too much craziness or pushing or shoving; everyone was dancing and life was good. Being an electronic musician, I kind of get how Zedd can’t really do anything performance wise – he can’t do crazy riffs on the guitar or go ham on the drums. He dances, jumps a lot, points at the crowd, makes us really amped up with buildups to the most insane drops I’ve heard live. It works. he production crew really did a great job too, the lights were amazing; there was confetti, streamers, smoke machines, etc. I would classify the whole thing as a spectacle. It was really something to see and experience it all in person – it was lit AF!!!! If I wasn’t in the photo pit, I would DEFINITELY be in that crowd. No question about that.


Bella Pham & Marcus Shriver | No More Cheezeburgers | KXSU Social Media Editor/KXSU Head Reporter

 

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