The final day to Northcoast 2012 began with a similar tone as day two. Everyone came prepared with umbrellas and rain boots expecting rain. Mother nature kept calm throughout the third day resulting in almost no precipitation. Making for much happier festival goers.
There were a few notable acts early on in the day. Ignorant Noise, Indigosun, and Rebirth Brass Band stood out. Ignorant Noise, despite being on from 1:30-2:15, put on as energetic of a show as any of the evening acts if not more. Indigosun used inspired sounds clearly out of the EDM realm. The result was a dynamic set interesting graphics to partner with the sound. Rebirth Brass Band has a history of greatness. They were the first ever brass band to win a Grammy. That being said, they had quite the reputation to live up to. They not only put on an amazing show, but each individual musician was more than proficient in their chosen craft. Hailing from New Orleans, this group really brought some needed soul to the festival.
Van Ghost, lead by Michael Harrison who is a co-owner of the festival, used a marriage of many different styles. Very strong vocals, combined with well developed instrumental lines, showed the groups’ undeniable talent for songwriting. Beyond the songs themselves, they exuded pure joy for their art throughout the entire performance.
Savoy, Boombox, and Digitalism all had note worthy shows too. Of the three Boombox stood out to me. They made the right choice to use Saxophone as well as other live instruments to stand out. The very random costume choices they made added an extra element of fun. Modestep had an energy level building prior to even going on stage. It was clear that this was one of the shows people were waiting for. During the entire show there was constant sea of hands up in the air no matter what they played. Chuckie had a very similar fan base and energy level. It was evident that The red bull stage was the place to be for most people on Sunday.
Big Boi, one of the few fundamental hip hop acts at the festival, put forth his best. He did some old Outkast hits including Miss Jackson, which were very popular. There were times when he could have built the energy level better, however the majority of his performance stayed true to him as an artist. Both Steve Aoki and Steve Angello had to deal with Pretty Lights being scheduled at the same time. Despite the ever growing popularity of Pretty Lights, both acts managed to draw a size-able crowd.
Pretty Lights was one of the most talked up acts of the festival. The laser light show in itself was amazing to watch. The light show connected well with every song and really had a rhythmic feel. As far as song choices and energy level, the energy seemed to remain fairly stagnat throughout the middle 30 minutes of the set. He was able to bring everything together at the end for an explosive final fifteen minutes.
Overall the North Coast Festival is a completely original festival. This EDM drenched festival draws a certain type of crowd where all kinds are accepted. If dub step or house music isn’t your thing, this is not the festival for you. We can’t forget though that North Coast has its random acts outside of the EDM genre thrown in. These acts almost seem like they aren’t meant to be there, but provide a soothing break from all the bass if desired. This festival grows immensely in numbers every year. It will be very interesting to keep tabs on this lineup and see where it grows in years to come.
Review by: Erin O’Connell