Sasquatch! Music Festival 2016, Day 4: Kurt Vile & The Violators

Sasquatch, Live Reviews
05/31/2016
Jacob Webb
photos by Matthew B. Thompson (view set)

One stage over from the Bigfoot stage at Sasquatch! Music Festival, where the perpetually-relaxed Kurt Vile was leading the Violators through a set that "languid" doesn't even begin to describe, the dance tent was bursting with bass and a flood of seizure-inducing strobe lights. Naturally, Vile didn't seem bothered in the least. The Philadelphia guitarist has (gradually less) quietly been carving out a reputation as the creator of a consistently interesting intersection between rock, roots, psychedelia, and noise for close to a decade, so despite his latest album, 2015's b'lieve i'm goin down..., being his most studio intensive LP yet, he and the Violators have had nearly a year on the road to nail down the arrangements of "Pretty Pimpin'", "Wheelhouse", and "Dust Bunnies" with more spartan means, capturing Vile's slow-burn looseness and almost-cavalier attitude and translating it into a set that was the festival's final breather before the high energy trifecta of closing sets that would follow. Vile himself noted this, but far more casually than most would talk about seeing Jamie xx (whose performance followed Vile's) at midnight. "Thanks for coming to watch us," Vile nonchalantly said as the set wound down. "We're going to go watch Caribou."

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