Free Press Summer Fest 2012 – a test of strength

Photo c/o the Horn’s Grant Schaefer

“It’s a novelty festival,” my friend and fellow journalist Caitlin DeWeese said to me as we were standing in the middle of the pavement near Eleanor Tinsley Park. “The novelty being, it’s hot as hell.”

I’m not sure who decided to host Free Press Summer Fest in June, in the unforgiving heat of Houston, Texas. But every single band I saw perform mentioned the sweltering warmth, and every fan could certainly feel it. It makes Free Press Summer Fest a bit of a trial — are you fan enough to space out your water drinking and your sunscreen-applying to stick it out and rock out front row at your favorite show? You have to pace yourself, but if you can figure out how to do it, Free Press will reward you. At two days, it’s the perfect length for the adventure that it is. This year, I was sometimes triumphant, sometimes defeated by the heat, but I still managed to catch some unforgettable performances.


Free Press Summer Fest: Who to see!

Houston’s Free Press Summer Fest is this weekend, and as usual, they have gathered an impressive and eclectic lineup to perform in the Texas heat at Eleanor Tinsley Park. There is so much packed into two days, it can be overwhelming. Never fear! We are here to give your our recommendations for who to see this weekend. So read on to get a short blurb about the artists we think are worth your time, as well as a song that will give you an idea of the artist’s sound.


Fun Fun Fun '10 In Photos

As promised, here are some photos from Fun Fun Fun 2010. Check out our Facebook page for more!

Cody Ground of Royal Forest

Royal Forest kicked off my Saturday FFF experience, and they rocked. Their big-sounding, guitar-heavy rock music filled the open field and sent a surge of energy into the morning crowd. Kudos!

Erik Lugo of Royal Forest

Austin's Woven Bones

I”m always a fan of a band with a female drummer. Woven Bones were gritty and garagey, and definitely had me bouncing around for a little while. I was happy to finally see this Austin staple.

JEFF the Brotherhood

I enjoyed JEFF the Brotherhood, although I wish they could find a stronger lead singer. Their drummer stole the show in my eyes – he was full of energy and super talented. I”m definitely a fan of the bluesy, raw rock coming out of Nashville these days! (See: the Ettes, everything Jack White does.)

Little Stolen Moments

Only in Austin could a trio of interpretive dancers be as beloved as Little Stolen Moments. I first saw these folks perform at South by Southwest in 2009; they really do light up a stage.

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The Antlers

The Antlers were definitely one of my favorite performances at FFF 2010. They were dreamy, soundscapey and just enjoyable to take in. I love that the keyboard player (below) was performing in his socks.


The Antlers


Wavves. Meh. Nathan complained a lot about technical difficulties, so they kinda lost me. I do like their album, though!

I was definitely disappointed in how quickly MGMT rushed off of the stage at the end of their set, but let”s be real – they”re fun to look at (as evidenced by the league of pretty people standing around me, trying to squeeze closer to the stage to get a glimpse).

Ben Goldwasser of MGMT

Andrew VanWyngarden

Thax Douglas

Austin poet Thax Douglas was everywhere during FFF; he kicked off my Sunday by introducing Margot and the Nuclear So & So”s with a poem.

Margot and the Nuclear So & So's

I love this band on record, but live, I”m afraid they only came off so-so. Margot was just too bummed out for a Sunday morning at a festival.

Aerial Pink

Aerial Pink”s Haunted Graffiti didn”t do it for me. Too much show, not enough substance.

Bethany Cosentino of Best Coast

Bethany owned the stage and won the day with her sunny, sweet vocals and her couldn”t-care-less laid backittude. Plus, once again – female drummer! Love it.

Best Coast's drummer - rawk!

Fun Fun Fun 2010

This was only my second year to attend Fun Fun Fun Fest, but it lived up to its name and then some. I was able to see performers I’d never heard of before, relax in the grass (and dust!) with friends, and wander around backstage as Andrew VanWyngarden from MGMT stalked me (I swear, every time I turned around – there he was!) Here’s a little recap for those of you who went to relive it, and those of you who missed it to join the action. Massive amounts of photos are forthcoming, so look back later for a gallery.

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