Quick Hits on the Mile High, Day 2
By John Wenzel
As much as I wanted to like My Morning Jacket’s sprawling main stage set on Sunday, Weezer’s was better. And not because Rivers & Co. have released anything all that noteworthy lately — far from it. But since the amiable, still-endearingly-geeky front man ambled around like a maniac throughout most of the set, we got to see the goofy humanity behind the hipster track jacket and black-frame glasses. That, and “Say It Ain’t So” sounded crushingly good, even in the high winds that regularly distorted the sound.
Enduring just a few minutes of the the histrionic vocals and mind-numbingly lame ballads of San Francisco crap-rockers Train was enough to handily win this category. The excellent allmusic.com website calls them “family-friendly alternative rock,” and I’m hard pressed to disagree. Note to Train: Rock should not be family-friendly.
Biggest Dawning Realization
During Dave Matthew’s long, tight set I realized I had seen this band in concert at least three or four times now for work-related purposes — and that I didn’t mind it. It’s not just that they’re wearing me down with their remarkably consistent live performances. It’s that despite my lack of love for Matthews’ mealy-mouthed delivery, the man writes catchy songs that stick in your craw. (It’s probably also because I came of age in the ’90s when Matthews was inescapable on the radio.)
Most Pleasant Surprise
At the risk of sounding like a PR rep for AEG Live Rocky Mountains (the festival’s organizer), I concur with Denver Post pop music critic Ricardo Baca’s overall assessment. Despite the safe, same-y feel of the music, it went smoothly in nearly every other aspect, from the mechanics of getting tens of thousands of people watered, fed and drunk to the way security handled the occasional outbursts of violence and hilarious inebriation. Putting on a large-scale music festival is much harder than it looks, but Mile High nailed it in its third year.
I can’t believe I’m saying this, but I wish I would have gone to the festival hungry instead of eating before arriving. I know, I know — I would have ended up dropping $30 to $40 on food alone, but the gauntlet of delicious eateries represented there (Steuben’s Food Truck, Spicy Pie, Taste of Philly, Colorado Buffalo Grill, Thai BBQ, etc.) had my mouth watering every time I endured the Walk of Food.
More Mile High Music Festival coverage on the next page…