Greater Des Moines Music Coalition released the first part of 2013′s 80/35 lineup yesterday at 10 am. You don’t come to this blog for breaking news. I am aware of this. It’s why I didn’t throw out a post immediately after the 80/35 lineup announcement. Others broke the news, and you likely would’ve got it from other outlets then come here and read the same damn thing. I figured why not give this news 24 hours to sink into the public and then we can talk about it a bit without the either initial disappointment or initial excitement. And from my minor amount of research, there seems to be a little of the former and a lot of the latter.
Just in case you were under a rock yesterday and I AM breaking news, here is the initial lineup announcement:
FRIDAY: JULY 5
> David Byrne & St. Vincent
> Tea Leaf Green
> Roster McCabe
> Kitty (Pryde)
> Dustin Smith & The Sunday Silos
SATURDAY: JULY 6
> Wu-Tang Clan
> Umphrey’s McGee
> Mr. Baber’s Neighbors
> House of Large Sizes
> Jon Wayne & The Pain
> The River Monks
> Trouble Lights
My first reactions are that having someone as legendary and even a little rare as both David Byrne and Wu Tang headline a festival as inexpensive as 80/35 is incredible. Wu Tang especially. Ghostface, RZA and Method Man could all be near the top of this festival solo, so to have them all together is just silly. Maybe I have been thinking a lot about money lately, but it sure seems like $50 for two days and two acts of that magnitude is just an incredible bargain. Throw in the rest, like Deerhunter, Yeasayer and one of my favorite bands in the world Wavves, and it seems like such an incredible no brainer.
I guess the big complaint I have seen is that Wu Tang is washed up, which is super annoying. Ghostface Killah has been releasing critically acclaimed albums for years. I get that we are six years plus from Fishscale, but c’mon, suddenly they’re washed up? Method Man, RZA and GZA have been doing solo stuff for a while, too. So it seems like a silly notion that this is some washed up band from the 90′s and not a legendary group with something to contribute artistically. I even saw someone say that it wasn’t indicative of where hip hop is in 2013, as if WU Tang wasn’t a huge influence on pretty much all of these people, everything from how to market yourself to actual performance. It is super silly to discard them as washed up. Nearly idiotic.
Now to the stuff I don’t like. There are a lot of jam bands. There are always a lot of jam bands, I guess it just seems that this year, there are a lot of well known jam bands. As far as stature goes, UM, Tea Leaf Green, Roster McCabe and Jon Wayne and the Pain are all big enough names that they may take up a spot for a bigger name band I would be more into. Now last year’s late announcements added shit like Jaill and K-Holes, so I am not too concerned and assume there will be more stuff to my liking. I am not as excited about the initial announcement as I was last year, but there is enough good to overcome the, uh, less good.
Oh, and good choices for locals so far. Giving Tires and Trouble Lights a spot on the fest seems like a no brainer and they seem like the two that will steal the show from all the national attention if given a chance. I’m excited for them and hope they get a good spot to showcase what they can do. As for the rest, just pure talent all around. I have zero complaints.