Review: Snoe.down 2011

Snoe.down 2011 @ Killington Resort and Spartan Arena

Words: Kahlil Katool
Photos: Wesley Rizzo

Moe., hosted their fourth snoe.down Winter Music & Sports Festival from March 24 – 27, a festival that captures the “.down home” feel the band’s events are known for. For the second consecutive year snoe.down was held in Rutland, VT as well as within the gorgeous landscape of mountains in Killington, VT. This year’s snoe.down brought out a lot of up and coming acts as well as several established ones to compliment moe., the upstate New York-based “ragers of improvisational rock.”

[All photos by Wesley Rizzo]

Showing musical excellence is exactly what moe. did with their two-night stand at Rutland’s Spartan Arena, where Keller Williams and Lotus opened. Snoe.down also featured an outdoor set on the side of Bear Mountain which took place in below-freezing temperatures with The Ryan Montbleau Band opening.  Moe. closed the weekend with an acoustic set that was open to VIP ticketholders, who were also treated to brunch. Not only did Keller open for moe., but he also had their dual lead-guitarist Al Schnier sit-in on his set.  This was later complimented by Keller sitting in with moe. as well. Snoe.down is a unique festival with an emphasis on skiing as lift tickets are sold as an optional part of the festival ticket package.

Thursday, March 24

Those early to arrive on Thursday were able to see either Twiddle at the Pickle Barrel or The Brew with special guest opener Lucid at the Wobbly Barn. The Wobbly Barn is an intimate bar-type venue that has an older, rustic decor as the floors and the walls are all wooden with a wrap-around upstairs balcony giving it a quaint, barn feeling. Lucid has an interesting sound and played a stimulating set. The dynamics of the sax player along with their percussionist, who also played a harmonica, added several interesting layers to the six-piece band from Plattsburgh’s sound. The highlight of Lucid’s performance was an unexpected but enthusiastically received cover of Beck’s Debra. READ ON for more from snoe.down 2011…

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State of the Union: moe. 2011

We’ve asked moe.ron extraordinaire Kahlil Katool to cover the moe. beat for Hidden Track and he has kindly accepted. Kahlil will be covering snoe.down for us, but starts by sharing his opinion of where the band is at after the group’s first two tours of 2011…

something new, something cool , something borrowed, something blue…

This line from moe.’s new song Haze rings true as an accurate description of what the band has offered the music world in 2011. Coming off the heels of their 20th anniversary tour in 2010, the members of moe. may have shed the suits they wore all year long to celebrate the benchmark, but have remained all business while barreling head first into 2011.

[Photo by Jeremy Gordon]

moe. has played 22 shows thus far this year, starting out with the Tropical Throe.down in the Dominican Republic, touring through the Pacific Northwest and hitting the left coast along with the Rockies, and most recently returning to Japan. Dual-lead guitarist Al Schnier, had this to say when asked how the band felt about the past two months: “New Year’s Eve in Boston was a great way to end the 20th Anniversary tour and the Dominican Republic was a great way to kick off this year. I can’t say enough good things about that trip, and we are already discussing plans for a follow up (island excursion). This run has been great one, and (we) are heading even further into 2011 with a lot of momentum.”

The New York-based “ragers of improvisational rock” continue to push the envelope nightly breaking outside of the familiar with over a dozen new songs debuted since last year’s Summer Camp Festival. The band is integrating these new songs in their set arrangements with great fervor. moe. has been taking big chances outside its comfort zone as the band mixes up its setlist writing formula of traditional staple “big guns” (ie. Moth, Recreational Chemistry, Timmy Tucker, meat., Yodelittle, Brent Black, McBain) as being the centerpieces of the energy and flow of moe. sets.

READ ON for more from Kahlil on moe.’s 2011…

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Last Week’s Sauce: March 22nd – March 28th

While you might not think of the middle of March as “Festival Season”, we’ve got audio from two separate festivals this week in our audio & video recap of what’s been going on recently. Jam In The Dam returned to The Melkweg in Amsterdam after taking a year off in 2009, while moe. had their first festival of the year up in Rutland, VT for the appropriately titled snoe.down.

[Thanks to OtherOneK for this week’s photo]

We also check in with Widespread Panic as they played their first live shows of the year and we listen in on some of the acoustic mini-sets that Wilco has been throwing into the three-hour shows they’ve been playing. We lead off with a gorgeous Neil Young cover and also have some audio and video from Orchestra Morphine’s most recent gig.

And we continue to take all the selected tracks, normalize them, create some simple fades and put it into one easy to download MP3 for you. Click here to download Last Week’s Sauce Podcast #4

Artist & Title: Cowboy Junkies – Don’t Let It Bring You Down
Date & Venue: 2010-03-23 Space, Evanston IL
Taper & Show Download: darktrain

As Neil Young says on 4 Way Street, this next song is guaranteed to bring you right down. It’s called Don’t Let It Bring You Down. The Cowboy Junkies perform a fantastic rendition of it. Cowboy Junkies next play April 15th in Buffalo NY.


Video from a very intimate gig in Davenport. Read more about it here:

READ ON for tracks from Les Claypool, moe., Orchestra Morphine, Widespread Panic and Wilco…

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3rd Annual snoe.down Line-up Announced

Snoe.down ’07, the all ages, weekend winter music festival hosted by indie-jam rockers moe., returns to beautiful Lake Placid, N.Y., March 23-25, 2007. Snoe.down kicks off the week-long Adirondack Almost

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