Strange bedfellows

by Suzannah Tartan

Strange segues: Yes, festivals give audiences an opportunity to sample everything from classic hits to upcoming trends. And yes, an eccentric juxtaposition of bands can reveal unexpected musical relationships or introduce you to new music. But somethings just don’t belong together like this downright weird bits of scheduling.

Suchadarapa followed by Sketch Show (Summer Sonic): The question is what are two ex-YMO geezers like Harumi Hosono and Yukihiro Takahashi doing headlining a festival so clearly geared toward adolescents and chart-hugging pop? Not that Sketch Show aren’t cool; they are, especially if Keigo Oyamada (Cornelius) joins them on guitar. But finishing up the night after the sunny teenage hip-hop of Suchadarapa, they’ll end up being the soundtrack to the clean-up crew.

Peaches between Lordz of Brooklyn and Bloc Party (SS): At first this makes sense as a sort of exploration of the different faces of hip-hop: Bloc Party channeling politics a la Public Enemy, Lordz of Brooklyn keeping it “real” and Peaches displaying the arty side of the genre. But Peaches is nothing if not subversive, in her lyrics and also in the dry electronica that backs her up. In fact, she is so spare and dark, it is hard to imagine her performing in the bright light of day, much less sandwiched between these homeboys.

mum to Praxis, featuring Bill Laswell (Fuji Rock): The ultimate in strange scheduling, guaranteeing a neverending scrum at the front of the stage. Mum is all mysterious, dark, electronica. Praxis could be anything that Bill Laswell happens to have up its sleeve, but dark, and quiet it won’t be. Especially if Bootsy Collins, a frequent Praxis contributor, is around.