This weekend we sent Pat from Pop Tarts Suck Toasted to soak up some music at the Catskills-based ATP Festival; here's his report from Friday and Saturday. (Check back later for an update from yesterday.)
Kutsher's Country Club, the remote Catskills resort located in Monticello, New York, has been overrun by music lovers, hipsters, and bands this weekend. The world renowned ATP Festival has once again set up shop in the small community with more then 30 bands playing over the course of 3-days (read our interview with the organizer here).
ATP keeps things intimate selling somewhere around 3,000 tickets, allowing the festival to take on more of a community feeling, with folks from all over the world mingling together, sharing the same hotel corridors and, of course, watching the spectacle of the bands booked here. It also helps that the band members, normally cordoned off in backstage areas elsewhere, get to meet their fans and watch the other bands while they're here.
Though Friday had a light rain, the cozy confines of Kutsher's offered music in an enormous indoor theater and ballroom (where Dirty Dancing was filmed). The main theater's performances were kicked off with Australian acts The Drones and Dirty Three, joined by the legendary Nick Cave on piano. Panda Bear, Iron & Wine, and Sucide each joined in the fun, but the night truly belonged to the newly reformed Jesus Lizard. Taking the stage David Yow, always the agitator, screamed "Happy 9/11 day everyone!", setting the tone for the irreverent set that followed—he later leaped from the stage into the crowd, which inspired a non-stop barrage of like-minded stage divers.
No matter, everyone seemed to enjoy their berating blend of punk and metal, even festival guests like Randy Randall of No Age and filmmaker Jim Jarmusch were spotted in the crowd. Friday also saw a comedy night curated by David Cross (performances by Eugene Mirman, Derrick Brown & The Navy Gravy, and Jon Benjamin and Jon Glaser) and performances by Atlas Sound, Bridezilla, the Elephant 6 associated Circulatory System, and the Melvins.
Earlier Saturday, Sufjan Stevens attracted a near-capacity crowd (in spite of an early start time) with his elegant, relaxing album Seven Swans. Overall, there was a huge array of talent from rappers like Antipop Consortium and El-P, to hard rocking bands like Shellac and Deerhunter, but the real excitement was provided by the dream poppers. Headlining the night was Animal Collective, with a stunning visual and musical experience.