FYF Fest 2014 Preview

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KCRW DJ Marion Hodges and I like to share our personal FYF Festival picks.

This year is not a particularly easy one to cover as it’s possibly the best line-up the Fest has had to date (and arguably the best line-up of any festival in Southern California this year).

Like wow.

There isn’t a single kink in the line-up, so you can’t honestly can’t go wrong at any point, whoever you choose to see.

The only problem you will undoubtedly encounter is the having to make very tough decisions and sacrifices at certain points, but that’s actually the dumbest “problem” I can ever imagine having. Too much awesome…ok, here goes:

Marion writes:

Headed to FYF Fest this weekend for what is perhaps it’s best overall line-up in it’s 11 year run? Here are 3 reasons to show up before the sun goes down.

Slint (Saturday 4 to 4:45 PM, The Arena (R.I.P Sex and the City stage names, and eff everybody who didn’t want to play the Miranda stage last year!)

My feelings about Slint have already been pretty well documented on this very website, but here’s the part where I tell you that on the second leg of their reunion tour in 2007 I bought a ticket to see them in Glasgow.

Then, after I realized that there was no way I could afford that, I bought a ticket to see them in New York. And when they finally added an L.A. show, I bought a ticket for that too. That’s to say, I’ve seen Slint twice and traveled across the country to see them once.

Both concerts made me get pretty emotional in the best possible way. Check out this live performance of what is perhaps my favorite song from their 1991 masterpiece Spiderland for definitive proof of where you should be at 4PM on Saturday.

Avey Tare’s Slasher Flicks (Saturday 5:50 to 6:35 PM, The Trees)

After Slint on Saturday, I’ll be moseying over to the Trees to check out the new side project from Avey Tare of Animal Collective fame.

The recently released album from this project, Enter the Slasher House, is one of my favorites of the year so far. I’m really excited to see how it translates live. This video for their first single “Little Fang” has my hopes up extra high.

Joanna Gruesome (Sunday 3:15 to 3:45 PM, The Trees)

Sigh. I feel like it’s my duty here as KCRW’s resident indiepop nerd and Slumberland Records superfan to recommend the one band at this year’s FYF who have recorded for the latter label, and fit squarely into the former category.

I do this despite their terrible, terrible band name because they are actually a really good band, and you really should see them!

As a quick side note though, Joanna Gruesome, aren’t you so tired of every positive review of your work having to come with the disclaimer of “I realize the band name is terrible, but…” If the wholly unremarkably named Twin Sister could change their name to the remarkably stupider Mr. Twin Sister at this point in their career, then surely at this point in your career you can change your name to pretty much anything else. Seriously, re-watch the way you completely own this Galaxie 500 cover, and give yourselves a new band name worthy of your awesomeness! Please…

Also, if you’re attending FYF and you like yourself you should seek out at least part of the sets from Slowdive, Les Sins, Caribou, Daphni, Darkside, and DJ Harvey.

Happy F-Yeahing y’all, I’ll see you out there!

Mario writes:

Earlier this year I got a chance to see the scintillating psychedelic sensualist Connan Mockasin.

His show is like being invited to an altered state sex cult ritual where the intention is to get weird and super turned on. The aural equivalent of ecstatic extended foreplay…on horse tranquilizers and Play-Doh.

I figure this description is probably a huge red flag for a lot of people, but I assure you this is way more awesome than I’m making it sound and is an experience well worth seeking out.

I promise you. Mockasin  feels like he’s playing an Ariel Pink-ish weirdness card, but has way more in common with Prince via Syd Barrett. The slow, loping grooves and his breathy (albeit sometimes a kind of Helium balloon breath) vocals are trance inducing and will draw in even the most skeptic listener.

It’s an odd and totally sexy trip. Get bent.  (Saturday, 3:25-4:10pm, The Trees)

Todd Terje. His singles are undeniable. His album is exquisite. And he’s performing his show live. This is not a DJ set. It is a possibly once in a lifetime event. Hopefully not, but it’s a huge undertaking. Any worries about his ability to actually pull this off were quelled last week when footage of Terje performing at Oya Fest in Norway surfaced. It’s phenomenal and is bound to be talked about for a long time to come. (Saturday, 6:35-7:35pm, The Arena)

I saw Built to Spill in 2000, when they were touring their Live album.

If you’ve never heard their album Perfect From Now On, I highly suggest seeking it out. It is quite possibly on my short list of Top 10 Desert Island Discs.

Wavy virtuoso guitarist Doug Martsch and Co. traffic in a unique driving post-rock that is somehow equal parts emo, math rock, psych-rock and jam band. They go on epic guitar squall journeys that will melt your face off and stop on a dime. It’s magic.

Also, their cover of Neil Young‘s “Cortez the Killer” is a facemelting monster and they were doing it a decade ago before it was cool to cover Neil Young.

Respect. (Sunday, 7:10-8:05pm, The Lawn)

If you want to dance…hands down one of the most exciting DJ/Producers of the last few years is Daniel Avery.

His undeniable Machine Funk opus “Drone Logic is a heady banger that is already part of the UKs undeniable continuum of proper dance music.

His gift for melody and groove have quickly established him a seat as a resident at London’s legendary Fabric nightclub and if you check out his DJ set you will immediately understand.

He’s one of the best live DJs I’ve had the pleasure of experiencing and cannot stress checking him out enough. (Sunday, 6:35-7-45pm, The Arena)