Yesterday concluded NYC’s three day long Panorama Festival. Ultimately, it seemed to be wildly successful weekend, but it would have been way less exciting without some of the acts that closed the Sunday of the fest out. You can read about those below.
6LACK – Georgia has been an absolute hotspot for rap talent in recent years and while 6LACK might not have as much weight in his name that rappers like 21 Savage do, he held down an early afternoon set. Carried by a tight full backing band, he brought a decent-sized crowd out and had an impressive energy.
Angel Olsen – Seemingly out of nowhere, Angel Olsen brought a large crowd to her stage and had everybody’s heads bobbing to her catchy indie folk songs with her impeccable voice and witty stage banter. Dressed in matching suits, her backing band was flawless, not missing a beat. Her name is definitely one to watch for the rest of the year.
Andrew McMahon in the Wilderness – By miles, the most energetic performer of the whole festival, who had a criminally under packed crowd. However, it was certain that those who did watch were huge fans, singing along to even his newest songs. McMahon paid them back for their loyalty by busting out songs from his old bands– Jack’s Mannequin’s “Dark Blue,” and Something Corporate’s “I Woke Up in a Car.”
Although his songs sounded fantastic, it was McMahon’s energy and props that really brought this set to the next level. From jumping off his grand piano, to dancing in the audience with a colorful parachute to his song “Synesthesia,” to riding a giant inflatable duck over the heads of those in front of the stage, McMahon led a 50-minute-spectacle.
Cloud Nothings – After the fest worked out the flaws of their indoor stage, the stage’s “curse” was finally broken by Cloud Nothings playing to a near capacity group of people. This Cleveland punk band didn’t need any fancy, just loud, fun hits to have a whole dome dancing along.
Glass Animals – Glass Animals played another surprisingly packed set just as the sun was starting to go down. Their infectious indie pop had a whole lot of people dancing along and musically, they were ultra catchy and rhythmically tight.
A Tribe Called Quest – With all due respect to Nine Inch Nails, A Tribe Called Quest absolutely should have headlined over them. Their over an hour long performance to an absolutely massive crowd was half their final show in their hometown and half a tribute to their recently deceased member Phife Dawg. As a unit, the group sounded as tight as they ever have and had a ton of people singing and dancing along.
But instead of having other people do Phife Dawg’s parts in their songs, they were played from a backing track as they were recorded by him and a fourth mic was placed on a stand center stage to honor his memory. There was something beautifully haunting about the 30 foot LCD screen next to the stage showing this empty mic as Phife’s raps played and the sun lowered on the horizon on the group’s hometown of Queens.
Nine Inch Nails – Nine Inch Nails is a great band for those into the “industrial” sound. However, it was clear that they were very “hit or miss,” as a large portion of the attendees left after Tribe finished. Unfortunately, Nine Inch Nails was the worst headliner of the weekend. This isn’t to say that they sounded bad. Their industrial sound and production was great for what it was, but this headliner lacked the legendary impression that Frank Ocean had or the incredible audio/visual mix that Tame Impala came with.
As a whole, it’s clear Panorama is still a young festival. There were a lot of flaws that needed to gradually worked out over the weekend and it’s always a bad sign when a whole stage is shut down for a day and a single day feels like a unanimous “best” day. That being said, Panorama did present an incredibly diverse lineup of artists, the majority of which had incredibly presented sets.
And of course, people are going to be talking about that Frank Ocean performance for a very long time, and presenting something as awe-inspiring as that shows they have what it takes to make in the new New York festival scene.
Read day two coverage of Panorama Music Festival by clicking here!
Nine Inch Nails
A Tribe Called Quest
Andrew McMahon in the Wilderness