Sound the horns: violin soloist Elizabeth Pitcairn and her red violin (which would be THE red violin) are coming to the Bay Area. And they're playing (we say "they" because she refers to the violin as "her partner" and "soul mate") pretty much the most iconic/recognized violin concerto ever written: Vivaldi's Four Seasons. The storied violin (a Red Mendelssohn Stradivarius of 1720 and the inspiration for the feature film, The Red Violin) was purchased for a cool $1.66 million by Pitcairn's grandfather at a Christie's Auction back in 1990. It's fabled that the violin holds transformative musical powers (it was crafted by Antonio Stradivari, the most famous violin maker of all time, disappeared for 200 years, and then made its way into Mendelssohn's hands).
With all the Halloween brouhaha, it's easy to forget that a "costumed" occasion of a more dedicated sort is just around the corner. We say dedicated because it involves growing hair. As in mustaches. Epic mustaches. It's all part of Movember, a month-long no-shaving pledge/charity-drive to raise awareness for men's cancers (specifically prostate and testicular cancer). Movember participants (Mo Bros, they're called) vow to abstain from shaving from November 1 until December 3. The journey culminates with a mustache Gala Parte (going down at Mighty in SF), where the Man of November is crowned.
This trumps any costume we've seen so far. Laughing Squid reports today on the world's first working iPhone costume. Reko Rivera and Bobby Hartman made these babies out of real 42'' LCD TVs and modified the iPhone software to allow a live dual image output in landscape mode. The whole costume cost them $2,000. A small price to pay for Halloween dominance. Check them in action below.
The Walkmen don't look like they'd pack much punch. Dressed in muted dark colors (with a collared shirt or two represented), the New York group is pretty unassuming on stage. But then Hamilton Leithauser starts singing and the horns start blowing and..whoah. Leithauser's voice has an intensity and range that's virtually unmatched. They absolutely rocked out "The Rat" and "In the New Year" and even treated the crowd (as well as a flock of pelicans who were flying above the stage) to some material from their new album, which is notably lighter than their normal fare. Check out "in the New Year" below.
We were excited to see Vetiver both because they’re local and because their brand of indie folk is just, well, lovely. And they definitely didn’t disappoint, treating a shivering crowd to favorites like “Rolling Sea” and “Everyday.” Simple and sweet, they gave everyone a great excuse to huddle a little closer for warmth.
Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros looked as if they’d just descended from some mountain-trek in the Andes when they took to Treasure Island’s Bridge Stage on (a very windswept) Sunday afternoon. Which is both to say that the group is very close-knit (lots of smiles and hand-holding) and that if an alpaca joined them on stage, it wouldn’t have seemed weird.
MGMT, the headliner for Saturday, had a tough act to follow - they played immediately after Girl Talk, whose show induced an island-wide dance freak-out and culminated with fireworks over the Tunnel Stage. As MGMT started their set, there was literally a frenzied skip/dance/run to the Bridge Stage. It was stampede material. An arms-flailing, high-on-life (and other things) kind of stampede.
MGMT's gotten a bad rap for being not-so-awesome live, but the Brooklyn group rose to their headliner occasion quite well and did what they had to do: played "Electric Feel" and "Kids" to close out a day of dancing on the island. Check out "Time to Pretend" below.
Playing to a jovial sea of gyrating neon, Passion Pit brought the happy this afternoon to the Treasure Island Music Festival with their pitch-perfect (high-pitched, that is) brand of electopop. The group, who hails from Massachusetts, was one of the most hotly anticipated acts of the festival and set a celebratory tone for the weekend with favorites like “The Reeling” and “Sleepyhead.”
Check out the opening of their set below, as well as some inspired dance moves from some chicks at stage right.