River's Edge Music Festival 2012

In all honesty, the line-up for St Paul's inaugural River's Edge Music Festival, could have been worse, and I still probably would have gone.  I was happy to finally have a proper music festival in the cities, but having Scissor Sisters and Diplo on the bill made it an easy choice.  The other bands we saw only sweetened the deal.  

The previous festivals, music or not, I've attended in MN have been no where near comparable to the likes of Coachella or Lollapalooza, both of which I've attended for the last 5 years.  I'm not talking in size, as the two latter, are massive, but in execution.  I'm was happy to see though, how smooth everything went, and how well it was organized.  From the ridiculous number of bathrooms and beer tents, to the food and drink options, to the grounds and stages.  Everything was really well done.  I'm really excited for the next 4 years since we were guaranteed 5 years of this.  I just hope they don't drop the ball next year. 

We ended up seeing 11 bands over 2 days, and for $99, that's a steal.  Especially considering some of the bands we saw. 

Saturday: Kinky, Gardens & Villa, Scissor Sisters, Datsik
Sunday: Civil Twilight, MIS, AM & Shawn Lee, The Flaming Lips, Diplo

I'd say my best band of the weekend was Scissor Sisters.  Although they were stuck at the smallest of the 3 stages, this was actually a benefit to us.   Showing up as the show started we were able to get right up front and center, and get a great view.  They played all their greatest songs and tore through their set with a ton of energy.  I even scored a set list, which I think was the first I've ever gotten at a show.

I was hoping for the same with Diplo.  He was playing at the same time as Dave Matthews, so I hoped most people would be watching DMB.  However, Diplo proved to be more popular that I expected.  It was actually pretty crowded for his set, but we still managed to get a great spot.  I did enjoy most of his song choices, and liked that he talked to the crowd.  I'm not sure why I was hoping for more, but like he mentioned, the stage was huge for 1 guy.  It would have been nice to have a more intimate DJ stage setup. 

One piece of the festival that was interesting was the Silent Disco.  You rent a pair of headphones which allow you to listen to 1 of 2 djs spinning at the same time.  Initially I thought this was really weird.  Well, I was right. The music was good when we checked it out, but I think people were there to witness the spectacle rather than actually dance.  My hope was this was a way to stay open into the night while avoiding noise violations.  Instead, this ran during the day and only 1 hour past the end of the festival. 

We'll see what, if any, adjustments are made for next year, but regardless, I can't wait!



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