All the Fun Fun Fun Fest 2015 Photos Pt. 1

Photos by Nathan Edge

Text by Ryan Jones

Fun Fun Fun Fest

A gold-sequined X hangs above the entrance gate before fields, stands, and concert stages. Fun Fun Fun Fest in neon lights. Fun Fun Fun ten? Do we say “fun” thirty times in a row now?

The creeping threat of cold, rainy weather did not extinguish the awesome forces of Fun Fun Fun Fest’s tenth edition, which ran through last weekend at Auditorium Shores in Austin, TX. Transmission Events earns props for staging this annually. It’s a cool music festival, with a less overtly commercial character than the city’s other similar celebrations, focusing on presenting archetypically counterculture forms of entertainment and underground styles. In downtime traveling between stages, you’d see a wrestling ring, BMX or skateboarding ramps, art exhibitions, and smoking lounges. There was an excellent group of pop-up versions of favorite local restaurants. This backdrop served the crowd well as so much music was consumed across four stages, each loosely organized by genre. I’m continually impressed by the lineup quality of this festival, as there are typically rare, legendary, or critically lauded acts on the bill. This year was especially astonishing across the board. We tried our darndest to capture as much of that 30x fun as we could. Enjoy!

Chromeo

I’m sure Chromeo would be OK with the fact that I use their intro as my superhero theme. I threw back enough party vibes from the crowd as repayment. Everyone did, really. Yeah, we’re all cool with Chromeo.

Chvrches

In what was definitely one of the most crisp and taut performances of the festival, Chvrches closed out the first night with a bang. It’s refreshing when bands make the effort to be so precise.

Fucked Up

That sense of well-being you feel since the weekend passed is the power that comes from the soul-cleansing ritual of seeing Fucked Up perform live. Although I didn’t personally receive a hug from Damian, I’m sure many freaked out fans who did had their weekend more than made by this set.

Golden Dawn Arkestra

Appropriately enough, this group got to be on stage for the first completely sunny day of the festival. They definitely made converts from the crowd to their theatrical brand of groove. Join in!

Grimes

With a brand new record days away from release, Grimes seemed hell-bent on bringing some of her new tunes to life in a gigantic way. The intensity for this one stayed all the way up. Lead us onward into the weird, Claire B.

Jane’s Addiction

Of course, this was a huge moment for the fest. The only thing more intense than this staging of the massive alt-rock totem that is Ritual De Lo Habitual, is the girls suspended from hooks. Don’t say you weren’t warned, this is a “cannot un-see” type thing.

Lido

What a pleasant surprise this was. While tossing the crowd around with some deft keyboard work, vocals, and live beat making, Lido claimed he was totally jet-lagged and struggling. If that’s the case, get out of the way when he’s well-rested. His remix of “Trap Queen,” something he claimed was top secret, was a crowd favorite.

Ms. Lauryn Hill

With speculation about this set reaching parodical levels, it seemed fitting that Ms. Lauryn promptly arrived at the close of the fest, expunging any doubts that she is an absolute genius performer who deserves our respect. When she said “observe how a queen do” during “Final Hour” I am pretty sure the whole crowd bowed slightly while screaming. My dead body is still out there on Auditorium Shores because of her show.

Neon Indian

While I took this set in, I realized that some of Neon Indian’s new singles are very ska or reggae, something I wouldn’t have typically pinned to the Neon Indian sound. It works, and the presence the tunes had for this show was monumental. Don’t count them out as a holdout from the chill-wave days. When Alan Palomo gets to ripping on those synths, any rhythm turns a cool dayglo hue.

Odesza

You might feel some of your bones hanging a little loosely after Odesza’s bass hit you. This is normal; do not be alarmed. Just remember how epic it was.

Off!

I HAD A BLAST!

Parquet Courts

Be proud of these former TX boys for making their mark. Their shambolic, rambling sound hits the same touchstone notes of the many greats of the indie rock pantheon, after being filtered through a ramshackle twist on roots music. It felt like someone shouting something profound then never being seen or heard from again.

Peaches

It’s good that something can still shock people these days. Every time I’ve seen Peaches, something indelibly astounding happens. In what was one of the more talked-about performances this weekend, Peaches walked on the hands of the crowd with nonchalance, emerged inside a giant inflatable condom, and hosted a marriage proposal.

Rae Sremmurd

One walks away from the party that is a Rae Sremmurd concert with one unavoidable conclusion: The Sremmlife is a good life. It’s about turning up, admiring the ladies, and staying that way. More power to these guys.

Ride

Ride unleashed a gauzy sheet of guitar sound, and the eardrum massage we received was heavenly. Just to hear their material take flight was transportive. “Vapour Trail” seemed to cast a spell of reverence over the fest.

Shamir

This up-and-coming darling celebrated his 21st birthday (cheers!) with a riveting showcase¬†on Saturday¬†afternoon, just in time for the sun to come out. I was the guy smiling his face off the whole time in the middle. Glad to have this guy’s talent get recognized. A totally spectacular set.

Slow Magic

A dazzling display of what a one-person performance can be these days, this masked mystery fully engaged the audience in a tribal throw-down of sound. Definitely a show-stealer.

Toro Y Moi

Chazwick Budnick is that guy who is unfazed and knows everything is gonna be just fine. He’s all, don’t worry about it dude, just vibe with it. The understated, smooth funk vibes of this performance settled perfectly into the overcast gray of the day.

Venom

This is the perfect demonstration of Fun Fun Fun Fest’s power to draw legends out of the woodwork. In their sole US show, these black metal overlords rained relentless aggression and fury down from the black stage’s final hour. It is assumed that the grounds will be cursed for some time.