Posting a Bonnaroo preview is a daunting task. Six years ago when I attended it was arduous to see all the bands I was sweet on and now there are triple the number of acts. I can’t imagine trying to see anywhere near half of the bands listed on the line-up, but for those of you who are going, I thought I’d try to give you a few suggestions along the way. I think the best way to do this is to suggest a few acts you can miss and those you just can’t skip…
Thursday, June 12
MGMT, This Tent 5:45 – 6:30pm
MGMT is a really great newish group from Brooklyn with quite a bit hype around them. The duo has a real “Stones cerca Satanic Majesty or Beggars Banquet” feel.
Battles, This Tent 10:00 – 11:00pm
I haven’t caught the math rock machine just yet but I’ve heard really great things about Battles’ live show. Go just to see drummer John Stanier play a cymbal that’s a foot and a half above his head.
Vampire Weekend, This Tent 11:30pm – 12:45am
No, I am not a popularity naysayer. I totally love Vampire Weekend’s debut. But this hour and a half is going to be a scene and they are not well-known for an incredible live show . Do yourself a favor, save your energy from this crowd because you’ll be in one all weekend. If you must, take it in from afar.
Friday, June 13th
Bluegrass Allstars, The Other Tent 3:45 – 5:15pm
Bela Fleck and Edgar Meyer’s Bonnaroo performance back in 2003 was a religious experience and this should be equally as moving. The aforementioned duo are accompanied by a slew of acoustic magicians. This is the best part about these festivals: you can see any number of genre’s during a weekend, including bluegrass!
My Morning Jacket, Which Stage 12am – 3am
I really don’t need to say much. MMJ is arguably the best live rock band in music today, they’re Bonnaroo veterans, and they have three hours to blow your mind. Once they finish, go party with the Disco Biscuits until they feel like letting you go to sleep.
Tiesto, This Tent 1:30 – 3:30am
Tiesto is like art you buy at the mall. If electronic music is what you crave in the wee hours, then go see MSTRKRFT and the Disco Biscuits. Don’t feed Tiesto’s claim of being the world’s #1 DJ. Barf…
Saturday, June 14th
Kanye West, What Stage 2:45 – 4:15am
Kanye West, Kanye West’s ego, late night show on the main stage for the first time, and his critically acclaimed “Glow in the Dark” show. Need we say more…
Chromeo, This Tent 1 – 2am
Chromeo is my favorite of the weekend to be talked about extensively the next day by those who catch their show. Get your body moving before Kanye and go see the best thing to come out of Canada since the Arcade Fire.
Ghostland Observatory, This Tent 2:30 – 4am
I wasn’t impressed with their show at Lollapalooza last year and the new album Robotique Majestique is mediocre. Don’t waste your time on bands that have one or two good songs.
Sunday, June 15th
Robert Plant and Allison Krauss, What Stage 6:15 – 7:45pm
When I first heard Rising Sand, I kept shaking my head because I couldn’t believe that a pairing that extreme would produce such great music. Take it easy, lay in the grass and listen to two of the best voices in music for an hour or so.
Widespread Panic, What Stage 8:45 – 11:30pm
The band that defined Bonnaroo is back again this year to close out the festival. After a few down years Panic is in solid form and will be ready to step up to the headlining slot. Show some respect to the boys who helped put this festival on the map.
O.A.R., Which Stage 4:45 – 6:15pm
If I hear “Crazy Game of Poker” one more time in my life, I will loose my mind. It’s bands like O.A.R. that baffle me as to how you make it big in music. I guess there’s got to be something other than Tiesto to please the frat boys.
Of course, no matter which bands you choose to see, we here at LMB hope you all have a fantastic and safe weekend. Drop us a line and mention what bands you’re excited to see. Or, get back to us after the weekend’s over so we can get your reports on who really lit up the crowds down in Tennessee.