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14 Jul 2011

Most Fun Ever…Edgefest 2011

Most Fun Ever…Edgefest 2011

Well, that sure was fun. Beautiful weather, cold beer and a fantastic line up of music; I can think of worse ways to spend my days. With a hop, skip and a subway (plus one short bus ride) we arrived at Downsview Park to check in and get a proper lay of the land before the jam-packed day began.

I Immediately noticed the absense of any beer gardens, spare one “VIP” area. The modernization of Ontario’s liquor laws back on June 1st certainly has it’s perks – underage drinking have never been so easy! The rainy shit show that was Edgefest 2009 found my friend trying to sneak her sister into the beer gardens to no avail then having to balance her time/fight the mobs to get back in when she wanted to drink. Needless to say she had a terrible time, so I guess losening the belt is a good thing?

Kicking off the main stage and perfectly setting the tone for our day of music, the hometown heros powered through a wickedly loud set, so loud that even as we began our day of stage crawling to the side stage, you could hear their waves of sound between the pauses in Sandmand Viper Command’s set.

The army of SVCers donning the excellently designed ‘What Is A Sandman Viper Command’ t-shirts lined the stage front and center but these two dudes discovered then tried to grind the posters just after the set.

While there are many perks to covering a festival as media, I’m a simple girl to please. The best perk according to me: salvation from the dreadful portable shitholes. I mean, seriously, there has to be some kind of standards. Luck for me since it was sweltering, I was privy to AC, hardwood flooring, wall paper and of course 102.1 The Edge playing softly in the background.

I don’t know what it is about the trumpet that just pulls me in everytime. Perhaps the likeness to an elephant call? Whatever the reason, Michou’s bubbly folk pop went perfectly with the sunshine.

It seemed as though the Arkells sparked the trend that would flourish into extreme awesomeness by day’s end in having members of The Reason and Dinosaur Bones join them on stage for set closer ‘John Lennon’. Mike DeAngelis easily wins best Summer festival outfit. Oh yeah, during the set this guy almost kicked me in the face…which is why they kick photogs out of the pits after 3 songs I guess. Thanks to the babe who saved me.

As I was walking through the grounds, I spotted a circle of dudes and excitedly ran over to see if they were engaged in some chinlone, but alas, it was only a game of hacky sack. The other thing I noticed was a sever lack of garbage/recycling recepticals. I know they pay people to clean up the festival grounds and all, but they could have made their work load 10,000 blooming onions lighter by having them more accessible.

I live in Toronto, I have their EP and they are no strangers to Pink Mafia…how have I never seen them live before? I’m glad I’ve finally crawled out of the rock I’ve been under because they’re fantastic.

How rad is Graham Wright’s Radio 3 t-shirt? After a brief opening snafu, our favourite indie rockers played all our favourite singles ending the set once again with some stage crashing by the Arkells and Dinosaur Bones during ‘Your English Is Good’.

Since I’ll never be able to see a band like CCR or the late 60s to mid 70s Allman Brothers rock live, I’m so glad The Sheepdogs exist. While the poles have closed, here’s hoping they land the cover of the Rolling Stone – TBA August 18th.

That booming smile you see on John Samson’s face which he donned during the entire set echoed my sentiments exactly. The fans of headliners A Perfect Circle/Rise Against however, did not feel the same way and took to the lawn for a snooze. At the very least, you’d think nostalgia for Propagandhi may have peaked curiosity?

Hollerado’s biggest fan getting autographs to add to her adorable hand-drawn scrapbook:
Who knew Menno Versteeg could fly? The band’s singer lept what seemed like an eternity in a single bound over the photo pit and into the crowd for few a sing-a-longs. I also take back what I said about best dressed, Dean Baxter’s t-shirt of Jake Boyd takes the cake. Not only did this set include Branko Scekic’s mad free-stlye skills but had members of Dinosaur Bones, Sandman Viper Command and The Reason all joining on stage for a cover of Neil Young’s ‘Rockin’ in the Free World’.

“I went to Edgefest and all I got was this shitty tattoo”. Instead of catching any of A Perfect Circle or Rise Against’s sets we heard this rumor flying around that someone was doing free tattoos. They weren’t free, but Brent Seyffert from Entertainment Ink was super awesome and not the least bit sketchy…for being a mobile tattoo artist, that is. While tattoos ranged from a treble clef, a feather and some ancient hobo code, my favourite has to be the accidental Mercedes-Benz peace sign tattoo.

Thanks for the time Edgefest. Until next year! x

Words and photos by Kate Masewich

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Kate Masewich



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