Osheaga Music and Arts Festival : Parc Jean-Drapeau, Montreal, Quebec -9/8/ – 9/9/07

The Osheaga Music Festival returned to beautiful Parc Jean Drapeau in Montreal, QC for its second year in a row. The festival initially boasted an all-star line-up with recent buzz-worthy acts such as Amy Winehouse and Peter, Bjorn, and John, but due to unforeseen circumstances the two artists had to drop out of the festival. However, with The Smashing Pumpkins, Arctic Monkeys, Bloc Party, Interpol, and Feist on board, the festival was far from a shortage of heavy hitters.

Although the heavy hitters brought the heat home, many people found themselves at odd hours having crazy dance parties on the smaller stages. A special thank you goes out to Vice for providing an afternoon of loud punk music, as well as free corn on the cob for festival goers.

Osheaga Highlights:

Panthers: These guys are destined to blow up. For lack of a better comparison, they sound like a reincarnated version of the now defunct (or dead) Death From Above 1979. Perhaps it is the way Jayson Green screams his heart out through distorted vocal effects that ring and squeal with every breath he takes. Or maybe it is the 4/4 dance-rock beat that is constantly begging for listeners to tap their feet too. Whatever it is, it is loud and contagious. They make standing still a hard thing to do.

Fucked Up: Fucked Up warned us about the show. The singer told the audience that the last festival gig they did got shut down after four songs. The Toronto hardcore band, breezed through their set in true hardcore style. Midway through the set, the vocalist came down into the crowd, gripping the mic in one hand, and flailing his other hard into the crowd, instigating the inevitable slam-dance mosh-pit that the crowd was eagerly anticipating.

The Smashing Pumpkins: The problem with seeing The Smashing Pumpkins today is the inevitable split between the fans: There are the people who stopped listening to the band after Mellonchollie (Iha fans presumably) and the people who never stopped listening (“Corgan is God”-mentality, presumably) to The Smashing Pumpkins. The Iha camp must have been mildly disappointed, as Corgan whipped through songs from the trivial (among Pumpkin fans) Machina albums and the new Zeitgeist. The “Corgan Is God” fans must have loved the epic Doomsday Clock and Tarantula that was played. The fans will never agree on anything except that Corgan should play Mellonchollie tracks every show. Although he did not play Zero or Muzzle, he serenaded us with Bullet With Butterfly Wings early on in the set. The highlight of the weekend came late in the set when everyone left the stage except for Corgan. He played 1979 acoustic with a backing band consisting of thousands of amateur vocalists within the crowd, and it was the prettiest thing we heard all weekend.

Santogold: Another act that was not featured on the main stage, but probably will be in years to come. The Brooklyn-based act featured layered drums, synths, and samples that led to a nice daytime dance party lead by a singer dowsed in fluorescent urban wear. New York folk can catch them September 24, when they open for Klaxons and Bjork at Madison Square Garden!

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