By Ian Port and Andrew Nilsen
One thing crowds at San Francisco's Outside Lands festival do pretty well is get down.
Despite the relentless wind, heavy fog, and numbing temperatures, we saw plenty of good moves last weekend -- and some ridiculously silly enthusiasm from certain crowd members. (It helped that Big Boi stuck to playing his bass-heavy hits.)
Here, compiled and edited by Ian S. Port and Andrew Nilsen, are the six funniest moves we saw at Outside Lands -- in GIF form, naturally.
By Cody Nabours
Christopher Victorio Stevie Wonder at Outside Lands.
Stevie Wonder, in theory, is an American artistic treasure. He's more than our Beatles or Rolling Stones; he's our Dickens or Dalí: a figure of impassable recognition, discussion, talent, love, and national pride. In theory.
In practice, however, Stevie Wonder is an experience.
Less than three minutes after Stevie Wonder takes the main stage on the final night of San Francisco's Outside Lands festival, keytar in hand and that beaming, always-loving smile of his worn proudly, he decides that it's time for the first singalong of the night. It was one of many. Where other musicians would wait for the middle of their set to lead the crowd in singing, when the School of Wonder is in session (as he calls it) you're not allowed to simply watch.
Christopher Victorio Metallica at San Francisco's Outside Lands festival.
Metallica, headlining Saturday night of the Outside Lands festival in San Francisco's Golden Gate Park, proved just about as huge and satisfying and powerful as Metallica can be in 2012. With a greatest-hits setlist, a small war's worth of explosives and pyrotechnics, and a huge meadow of fans shouting along, the biggest heavy metal band in the world showed that not only can it win over casual listeners and non-fans, but that it's at its best when trying to do so. Compared to Metallica's four intimate and indulgent 30th Anniversary shows at the Fillmore last year, the more than two hours of outright rampage last night felt like a well-edited tour de force.
While he's putting everything into a solo, Neil Young's face looks like his electric guitar sounds: flush with feeling, vaguely threatening, and thoroughly aged. Not old as in frail, but venerable; geologic. On the chilly, windy opening night of San Francisco's Outside Lands festival, Young the legend and his old group of noisemakers treated the sold-out crowd to a demonstration of rock as dinosaur music: gray hair and ancient, howling amplifiers, unapologetic nostalgia, 15-minute jams, the singer's O.G. nasal twang spooning out at times a bit too much lyrical honesty to keep the buzz going. (Even if they then built it back up.) It was the exact opposite of today's byte-sized, hyper-compressed, we'll-do-anything-to-hold-your-attention music culture. And it was great -- occasionally.
Christopher Victorio Neil Young and Crazy Horse at the Outside Lands festival.