Another Successful (and Sometimes Strange) Night for NMF ’16< < Back to
The second night of Nelsonville Music Festival was nothing short of lively. From inflatable balloons of the 17-year-old circada circling around the festival to the ever-growing vendor lines, the attendance was definitely up. While families were still present, an overwhelming majority were of the young adult demographic.
Young festivalgoers bopped back and forth from Fruit Bats on the Porch Stage and then filed into the Main Stage area for the nights headliners. While Gary Clark Jr. had to cancel his performance due to a family matter, BADBADNOTGOOD and, especially, Mac DeMarco managed to more than make up for the lost time.
The Canadian jazz/hip-hop quartet of BADBADNOTGOOD gave the young crowd a fresh take on a juxtaposition of the two genres that work surprisingly well together. The guys gave a sharp performance focusing on the energy from the crowd and channeling it into their work.
Later in the night, festival goers fervently chanted “Mac! Mac! Mac!” in anticipation for Mac DeMarco’s set. When DeMarco did appear, clad casually in a loose-fitting grey shirt, black trucker hat and brown, cuffed pants, he came onstage early to soundcheck and playfully puttered, much to the audience’s amusement, into his mic.
DeMarco’s performance gave an unexpected, almost spiritual vibe to the Friday night lineup. Early on, Mac played the crowd pleasers, including his ever-beloved “Salad Days,” and several other immediately accessible tracks from both Salad Days and Another One.
From there, things got progressively stranger. From inviting a seemingly random (and quickly shirtless) audience member onto the stage — whom DeMarco affectionately christened “Dirty Dill,” to playing a bizarre “mantra” consisting of a speed-metal version of “Henry the VIII I Am,” and ending the night with an endurance test style rendition of “Enter Sandman” after teasing the audience that the band was going to play a “new” song, DeMarco’s performance was something to write home about, for sure.
Not to mention the excessive (and surprisingly successful) crowd-surfing, which had Mac floating on a sea of enthusiastic hands (“he feels squishy, like an ice-pak when it thaws out,” remarked one audience member,) surfing all the way from the front of the Main Stage to the mixing booth (and back). Oh, and Mac progressively stripped down for the audience, eventually posing like a bizarre, Canadian flamingo in only his underwear on top of a speaker — smoking his Viceroys with a vengeance and smirking (exposing his perfectly gapped front teeth) all the while.