Edgefest might have been a little less “edgy” this year, but it certainly wasn’t lacking in entertainment value, and definitely not in crowd support.
Indie favorites A Silent Film, The Mowgli’s, Youngblood Hawke, Capital Cities and Atlas Genius dominated the start of the fest, serving up the big radio hits we all know and love from 102.1 The Edge.
Between the main and second stages, the crowd shuffled about between sets and got their start of summer on in style, and with great tunes to boot.Modern funk-poppers Fitz and the Tantrums were the ones to really get the fans ready and raring for the day. Although a small group of the crowd were the ones to raise their hands about having been to a set of theirs before, the group ended the set with hundreds more new fans.
Co-lead singer Noelle Scaggs really instilled the classic soul vibes into the day with her feisty tambourine beats and powerful, crowd-pumping pipes.
Rap-rock, indie-tronic duo Twenty One Pilots came out with a mission to hype it up and keep it weird, skeleton suits and all. The group stands out as possibly the most unique performance of the day, between the impromptu ukulele playing, crowd jumping and stage rafter climbing.
The crowd shouted “encore,” but the schedule had to stay tight!
The Airborne Toxic Event and The Gaslight Anthem lived up to the classic 102.1 rock that has attracted so many listeners throughout the years, but still held that unique, modern and indie spirit.
And so, the crowd surfing began, slowly but surely.
AWOLNATION, one of the most anticipated acts of the day, kicked things off with the biggest hits for a real attention-grabber. From the top of the stadium, the wave of raised arms moved in unison, even to help move those surfing on top.
The same could be said for Deftones later on at the second stage, which made for an even more entertaining set as the night grew darker. I stayed away from the pit for fear of my health, but stayed an entertained viewer from the sides as I saw person after person get tossed over the barriers.
Over at the main stage, Paramore gathered perhaps the biggest crowd of the day, from young girls with dark eyeliner to 6 foot 5 men bouncing around with an equal amount of enthusiasm.
Hayley Williams’ funky, masked and colorful makeup and constant shouts of “We are Paramore!” flipped a switch. Crowd surfers began to run into each other mid-ride – I believe the front of the stage kept their hands up the entire time to support them.
Bush served up some stiff competition and drew people downward to the main stage for some nostalgic good times. Massive sing-a-longs ensued from people more than happy to go back to their rock roots.
And the end-all, French indie-poppers Phoenix, really got the bass booming – I stood probably 10 feet from the speakers and felt physical pain from the intensity. But for Phoenix, it’s all worth it.
The hour-long set flew by in a manner that seemed like 20 minutes – even at 11 p.m., after twelve long hours of festing, a dance party culminated in front of the main stage, all aided by the colorful light show to accompany them.
Overall, a solid way to start off the summer before the summer even begins.