Review: Camp Bisco 11 @ Indian Lookout Country Club

Camp Bisco 11 @ Indian Lookout Country Club, July 12th-14th

Words: Carla Danca
Photos: Jeremy Gordon

Camp Bisco 11 began late Wednesday night, earlier than ever and started what might be one of the most improved festivals in recent memory. The band might not be playing many shows these days and have shown no intention of going back to touring full-time, but they sure do know how to throw a party. After years of extraordinarily long lines, the improvements needed to make Indian Lookout Country Club work for large crowds were implemented.

Unfortunately for those without parking passes, limited onsite parking as well as the off-site box office with shuttles helped to increase camping to accommodate the ever-growing event. Despite a tragic accident that occurred on Wednesday morning, safety was also improved by building segregated roads for emergency vehicles giving staff easy access to the fields. Part of this plan also included a very segregated VIP and back of house which led to different experiences depending on your ticket. The exclusive late night sets and the new entry, which made entering the site even easier, helped make the expensive ticket a must have for many and sold out well before the event.

While the Disco Biscuits’ sets started off a bit rocky, Saturday’s performances were enjoyable not only the fans, but for the band as well. As the crowd was getting down to old school songs like Mulberry’s Dream the band was looking just as happy to be there. The second set also saw a sit in from Big Gigantic’s Dominic Lalli on Spaga, while the sax star also played later that night with Conspirator in the VIP tent. The final set ended with high fives and hugs between the members, which was reassuring after a disjointed Road to Camp.

While there was a huge focus on EDM (electronic dance music) at Camp Bisco, there was also plenty of other music to see. Yacht, off of the Camp Bisco alumni’s DFA label,  had a Talking Heads vibe and a fun monochromatic look. Portugal. The Man were one of the only rock groups to hit the main stage but brought a laid back west coast sound that was greatly appreciated. Meanwhile, artists such as Amon Tobin went quite deeper. His audio/visual performance art piece may left have some looking for more, but gave the rest of us much to think about.

With beats going past 6AM, there aren’t many other festivals that have taken late night this far. The enormous B.I.G tent was a football field sized structure which contained hugely colorful raves and thumping DJs. Friday night with Dada Life featured explosive energy all around while Gramatik on Saturday in the Label tent put the final touches on the party.

But there was so much more to do beyond the music – performance pieces and art around the site were truly expanded. Some of the main stage area attractions included the Ferris Wheel and the BANG ON! NYC bus, where there was plenty to do and see even if you didn’t stay on the field all night. One of the fan favorite features was an archway over the walkway to “Mt. Dustmore” and the tents. While the girls dancing on the stages kept things moving and shaking all night, the live projections gave another place to gaze your attention.

Crazy things seen and heard:

  • Barber’s prison suit during the last set – WTF?
  • All the totems – Amon Tobin even had to ask audience members to take them down so the crowd could see his set and so all of the projections would work.
  • Another hip hop act is late? – Big Boi’s 17-minute set might have had the hits but left us waiting way longer than was appreciated
  • Speaking of waiting – The five cut-outs at start of Bassnectar’s set had the headliner apologizing multiple times to the crowd.
  • Barber and Skrillex riding a golf cart together – The Disco Biscuits guitarist said it was safer for all parties.

These shows really have us looking forward to the recently-announced City Bisco shows in Philadelphia on October 5 and 6. With a hugely successful weekend under their belts, it seems like there could be a “happily ever after” in Bisco Land.

Setlists… [via PT Bisco]

7/12/12 –

Set 1: Save The Robots, Basis For A Day > Mindless Dribble1 2 > Aceetobee3 > Basis For A Day4 > 424 > Helicopters1

1 – ending only
4 – unfinished
3 – middle only
2 – with Little Betty Boop fake out

7/13/12 –

Set 1: 7-11 > Little Betty Boop1 > Tricycle > The Great Abyss > Spacebirdmatingcall2 > Sound One

Set 2: Crickets > Strobelights and Martinis > Nughuffer > Lunar Pursuit > I-Man2 > Bombs > Nughuffer
Encore: Home Again

1 – inverted

2 – unfinished

7/14/12 –

Set 1: Plan B > I-Man1, Jigsaw Earth, Story Of The World, Therapy

Set 2: Spaga > Above The Waves2 > Spaga3, Mulberry’s Dream, Kitchen Mitts, Bernstein And Chasnoff > Tempest > Bernstein And Chasnoff

Set 3: King Of The World > Helicopters4 > Digital Buddha > Cyclone > Munchkin Invasion > And The Ladies Were The Rest Of The Night2 > Run Like Hell5 > Basis For A Day6
Encore: Spraypaint

6 – completes 7/12 version
5 – unfinished
2 – inverted
4 – dyslexic completion of 7/12 version
3 – with Dominic Lalli (Big Gigantic) on saxaphone
1 – completes 7/13 version

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