Day 2 of The Voodoo Experience | New Orleans, LA
Day 2 was a bit slower for me if I am being honest. We knew there were going to be some good bands there through the day but my eyes were set on one thing; Effing Trent Reznor and this reincarnation of Nine Inch Nails was all I cared about for the most part. To start off though, we woke up in the newly purchase dry tent and the temp was below 70 with no humidity. That alone in New Orleans is enough to scream about! We had some breakfast and decided to head over to the media tent a little bit early so we could catch even more acts than we did the first day. As luck would have it, that didn't quite go the way that we wanted. Luck never does so in the end we were ok. We got to see the NIN. :-)
The first band we were able to check out was the The Scorsceses. They were rocking it out at the Carnival stage and this stage was dedicated more towards the rock bands or ska bands. It was a real high stage that was almost impossible to shoot due to how high it was. The guys in The Scorsceses, though, they threw a great show. It was kind of like watching a little bit of the Mighty Mighty Boss Tones mixed with some Sublime. Crazy cool mixture and all the musicians were really on point. They dressed super fun as well which always helps me remember the band. There's just something about taking the extra time to dress like a lunatic that helps me say.... o yea that was the guy that was dressed in a anime costume. In this case that was the case. So yea these guys were a great start to our day o' shooting. After I photographed my 3 songs we headed back up the hill to catch some food and then made our way back over to catch the rest of the show. Definitely worth seeing if they come to your town.
The Scorsceses finish and we take the hike over to the Flambeau stage to catch a little bit of the group He's My Brother, She's My Sister. While I probably would not jam them out in my car(just being honest) I would rock them out at a show. They were all amazing musicians and moved all across the stage like a great band on this specific stage would. I couldn't help but stare at the bass player the whole time. Sometimes a musician can get lost in the music and that's where your eyes go. Thats how I felt with this specific band. It was definitely worth the stop to check out before we checked in with the media tent to download all images we had shot up to that point.
When we headed back onto to the festival fields we decided to check out what was going on the Ritual Stage(main stage). We hit up the end professional snowboarder Shaun White's band Bad Things. It was definitely an interesting take to see what someone with an extreme background would bring to the strings on a Gibson. The couple of minutes we did get to see weren't too bad. I'm not quite sure if they gave 100% or maybe they did and it just didn't live up to my expectations. That sort of thing happens from time to time. What did live up to my expectations was a band Annabeth wanted to see. Delta Rae is this amazing gem of a band that is just extraodinary! The harmonies are spot on at all times. Everyone sings! Everyone switches instruments! It is truly an amazing performance to see. The one thing that everyone was showing up to see from this group was their breakthrough song, Bottom of the River and getting to see it live was just epic. It could've been the 40s in a church, no air condition, in a church screaming hallelujah! Something of an epic moment for the whole festival. I would definitely love to see them again. It was a really good call on Annabeth's part for sure.
When Delta Rae was finished we took a trip over to catch a little bit of EDM act Mystery Skulls and wanted to see what he was putting up on the board. It was pretty legit to say the least. Anybody that can do a solid mix and sing at the same time is good in my book. The guy could really belt it out and keep the music going for everyone. The change of pace was nice for a few minutes. I managed to get some decent shots from up on the stage and we were on our way back to the Flambeau stage.
Annabeth had managed to make what I like to call "social friends" with one of the bands The Breton Sound. This band is a group of guys that have been together for no more than 5 or so years and have been blazing through with their straight rock style. What I love about bands that are no so huge that their managers need managers is the fact that they still really socialize with the band. It's not just a twitter thing or a facebook thing but they utilize all forms of social media. So there we are rocking out with some great musicians that Abs has managed to talk back and forth with. These guys bleed their heart out on stage and it was great to view. They ran through their set and didn't leave anything to chance. They just left everything on the stage! With all the amazing and the ok that had went on through out the day we had yet to see the best and the worse for the night.
Nine Inch Nails was only 2 acts away but while one of the acts was disney rock gone the way of badace chick rockers Paramore the other group was The Gaslight Anthem. We were standing there pushing through what we thought was a very boring set going on from The Gaslight Anthem and Abs made a great point. They seem like they are the next version of The Boss! Everyone has their own taste and there were a lot of people that were there rocking out the whole time but just as I'm not a fan of Bruce Springsteen I'm just not a fan of The Gaslight Anthem. Their set came and went, it took forever, but it did finally finish.
Paramore came out and Haley has definitely grown as performer. The last time I saw Paramore they had just had huge success with Decode for the Twilight soundtrack. Long have those 5+ years passed and this girl was a full blown force pushing her band of boys ahead into a truly strong rock band. It was really something to watch! There were moments where you thought you saw a younger version of Gwen Stefani swaying back and forth. Their stage production, however modest, was just enough to wow you and fit right in with the music that they were belting out. Most of their fans were wanting them to go for more of the "oldies" they managed to keep the set list fairly varied. It was a solid hour long set to lead into probably what was the most aniticipated moment of all of the 2013 Voodoo Experience.
We sat and waited.....It was a good 45 minutes before the pulsating sample from "Copy of a..." started and it was well worth it. Since it was my first time to see NIN live all the eye candy created from the stage production was enough to keep me ecstatic! What made it even better was the fact that this time around Trent Reznor had made sure that he was going to keep everyone on their toes. In the age of youtube we can pretty much see what we are going to be seeing. All through the summer their had been hq vids of what the Nine Ince Nails show was going to look like but in Reznor/NIN fashion he made sure that the 2013 Tension tour wasn't going to be the same as the tour that everyone had started to get used to seeing online. For starters the band roster had changed(for the better). For the first time there were back up singers that just made the NIN show a crazier but differenet experience. He then added the session bassist from Hesitation Marks, probably one of the best bassist on the planet today Pino Palladino to the stage as well. Those 2 additional factors helped to make NIN more of a funk feel to it. It was really something incredible to the fans that knew that NIN were more than just a song that screams "I wanna f**k you like an animal". To that point, "Closer" wasn't even played this time around. I was personally ok with that. Sure I would like to see it live eventually but I was happy that I had the chance to see him pull out some of the oldies like "Sanctified" & "Reptile". Moments like those just mentioned are always a plus! I was more than happy with what the stage and set list had to offer. The only thing I would like to see the next time that NIN comes anywhere in my traveling vicinity is a more industrial feel. I had the oppurtunity to see the most funkiest form of Nine Inch Nails and now it would just be the cherry on top if I could see them in that form that built them up. Reznor will openly say that he is not a nostalgia act so I'm not sure if that will ever be the case. If not then I'm still completely ok with it. It really doesn't matter what form you see Nine Inch Nails in. Reznor always makes sure to give you a reason to keep your phones at your side and just stare in awe.
To say the least all the wait for Nine Inch Nails was well worth the wait for me. It was a short walk back to our tent where we then changed real quick and headed out for some Cafe Du Monde' to get some of their famous Beignets for a nice quiet close to the night. We still had one day left and it would be straight dancing all day long straight into the night. We would need the rest.