Outside Lands Day 2: Street Sweeper Social Club, Trombone Shorty, Black Eyed Peas, The Mars Volta, & more, Saturday, August 20, 2009.
Better Than: sitting in the park, waiting for you.
The first day of Outside Lands was a huge freakin' success, especially if you stayed at the Twin Peaks stage (like I did). The opening night salvo of Zap Mama-Midnite-Q.Tip-Thievery Corporation was a potent one, to be sure. But how would Day Two line up? First of all, unlike the first day, there was no 'groovy bloc' of artists all lined up at a particular stage, all day long. This encouraged wandering. Besides Twin Peaks, there were several other stages, and with the talent level spread out fairly evenly among them, it only made sense to check them all out.
Arriving at just after 2 p.m., I was sorry to find out I missed both Albino! and Zion-I. Too bad these local acts couldn't have been scheduled for later in the day, but that's how it goes. Still, I did manage to see the Street Sweeper Social Club, which I had earmarked before the festival as one of my must-see bands. Tom Morello and Boots Riley did not disappoint. Their set of revolutionary rap-metal had Molotov intensity, although it did kind of sound like an aggregate of Rage against the Machine and the Coup (which, to a certain extent, it was). Still, I dug their “SSSC” uniforms (which evoked both classic Soviet Communism and the Beatles, circa Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band). Boots' famed Afro stood tall, and Morello's rock star-riffage was on point.