Pitchfork Day 2: Youth Lagoon and Nicolas Jaar

July 14, 2012

"Looking forward to a literal Youth Lagoon at the Blue stage," Andrew Gill tweeted earlier this afternoon. He was right; the young Trevor Powers has the crowd to match, the weather finally held up and who ever said the young weren't wise? (A lot of people, that's who.) Powers, who was joined by "my friend Logan [Hyde]. Everyone say hi to Logan," kept it energetic and sweet, making reference to Snapple as his drink of choice for the day.

Songs blended together with a sound that could be slightly too similer at times but when the beat dropped, I wasn't complaining: This is band where the instrumental parts work so well together that the vocals felt almost superfulous, especially on songs like "Montana."

"This is our last song for today," Powers said so when "My friend Logan" came in on guitar I managed to get nostalgic, for a time that had barely begun.

I'd like to say I saw a lot of Nicolas Jaar and that I enjoyed it, but both would be a lie; after many minutes of waiting for some never-explained sound issue to be resolved, Jaar finally started off with a "Thank you for waiting," before launching into a long endless stream of what amounted to ambient noise.

That time waiting did give me the opportunity to mull over the aesthetic of the band; saxophonist Will Epstein looked like the hippest I'd ever seen but had interactions with the microphone that rivaled Dave Grohl of the Foo Fighters, which caused my companion to remark, "What is he doing to that?"

As for the music, Jaar and his band sounded a lot like the soundtrack to an 80s classic, conjuring up memories of movies like The Fabulous Baker Boys. Once they actually got going, the beat was, for a moment, identical to "Safety Dance", a feat in itself. If I've learned anything, it's that saxophone is the instrument of the weekend and that delayed gratification isn't all it's cracked up to be.