Festival season is in full swing and Shaky Knees brought the heat over the course of the three day event. A wonderful weekend of weather in Atlanta, despite a string of showers Saturday night, kept the vibes high and the energy levels at a positive gradient all weekend long. With four different stages, tons of delicious food and drink options, a wide variety of art, games and activities for attendees of all ages, Shaky Knees was extremely well rounded and I would highly recommend the festival.
Day 1 was a massive day for music at Shaky Knees with the likes of Peach Pit, Tash Sultana, Oh Sees, Incubus and Beck absolutely crushing their performances. Tash Sultana’s performance crushed every expectation we had into a million pieces. Tash put on a solo performance in front of a massive crowd and she did it as with as much ease as she used to in her home. Incubus was a band most of us group up on and it is safe to say they still give 110% during their performances. They managed to bring us back to a time when alternative rock was our escape from our not-so-big childhood issues. With that being said they are still capable of helping us enhance our commutes to and from work in our adult lives.
Peach Pit brought the genuine bummer summer vibes that we didn’t know we needed on such a swell Friday afternoon. To wrap up day one, Beck left us speechless. We all got to witness an absolute legend of a front man push rock and roll boundaries with some classics and with some new tunes and those Beck classics.
Day 2 we woke up hoping our good vibes would be enough to keep the bad weather away. Luckily the storm that blew through Central Park was only rain and no lighting, which would’ve caused serious issues for the festival. The shortened sets and schedule changes didn’t stop the bands from jammin’ out and it surely did not stop the fans.
In my opinion, Japanese Breakfast took the throne on Saturday with a magnificent set in the Ponce De Leon tent. Packed as ever and a bit toasty up underneath that tent but the smooth and soulfulness of JB brought a funky breeze to whisper in through the crowd. An electro vibe that sent shock waves around the vast majority in attendance sent spirits high in Central Park.
Gary Clark Jr melted our faces with some diamond cutting guitar solos and a band of instrumentalists whom added to the level of funk he was already bringing. Cage the Elephant put on one of the best performances I have ever witnessed. Matt Shultz has such a dominant stage presence and truly inspires so many to get back to the showmanship that rock n roll’s lead singers used to hold.
Day 3 was jam packed with quality artists both big and small. Electric Guest brought in an early crowd to the Peachtree Stage as they had Atlanta non-stop dancin’ through the midday Georgia sunshine. The Criminal Records stage hosted some of the top jam bands of the weekend including one of Mic Drop’s favorites, CAAMP. The Ohio natives absolutely crushed one of my favorite stages of the weekend. The Criminal Records stage was tucked in the back corner of the fest deep in the trees with a nice glimpse of the sun through the canopies. It felt as if CAAMP had their own nature built amphitheater to soak in their southern folk sound.
Calpurnia played a dreamful set in the Ponce tent filled with some highly rated singles and a fantastic cover of Weezer’s “Say it Ain’t So”. The band is young but play like they’ve been doing it on the big stage for years. The four piece band consists of Finn Wolfhard (Yes, the kid from Stranger Things) on lead vocals and rhythm guitar, Ayla Tesler-Mabe on lead guitar and vocals, Jack Anderson on bass and Malcolm Craig on drums.
Foals hands down played the most kick ass set of the weekend with the most UK rock vibe we could’ve ever asked for. Playing some ridiculously funky new tracks off of their new record titled Everything Not Saved Will Be Lost. Taking us on a classic journey through their discography.
The weekend was stirred up into a giant melting pot mixed around by the sounds and visuals of Tame Impala. An absolute puddle of attendees was sighted quickly after the start of Tame Impala’s set as they were all quickly washed into another dimension of funk and feeling. The band exceeded all of my expectations with some ridiculous visuals and constant vibrations that would sweep your mind of all negativity.
From the undeniably talented roster, finger licking food, and awe striking art for all- I was blown away by this years production. Thank you for having us Knees, we’re already marking our calendar for next year!