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Live: SunFest Day 4 With MGMT and Styx, April 30

SunFest Day 4: MGMT and Styx
West Palm Beach Waterfront
Saturday, April 30, 2011


Better than: Your average Saturday in the park.


Throughout Saturday's portion of SunFest, an abundance of music festival types wandered the grounds, aimlessly searching for party

beads, another beer, or possibly their shirts -- a large portion of the

men in attendance appeared to have lost theirs. (I believe most of those

shirts were located floating near the Captain

Morgan floating oasis by later in the evening.)


The two major draws

were nostalgia AM prog schlockers

Styx, who now tour with only two original members (but not

lead singer/keyboardist Dennis DeYoung), and Grammy nominated

indie-pysch darlings MGMT.


At the Tire Kingdom

stage, families enjoyed a performance of Styx classics such as "Lady"

and "Come Sail Away." Infants danced on the lawn as dads air-guitared the

living daylights out of Tommy Shaw's guitar solos and moms swooned over the dramatic classics of yesteryear. 


Meanwhile, across

the battlefield of lost corperate handouts and plastic drink cups now

mercilessly trampled underfoot, a massive audience easily twice the size

and a third the average age of the crowd watching Styx waited patiently

for MGMT to shock them "like an electric eel." Warmed up by a less-than-memorable set by New Jersey band Steel Train, the mob of slouchy, boot-clad teenaged girls screamed their ever-loving heads off as MGMT took the

stage in a cloud of fog and purple lights. Faux-feathered Native

American headresses swayed as the audience danced to the familiar

soundtrack to the sale of leggings everywhere. 


Truth

be told, MGMT made a believer of this casual fan. They played a very

strong set of both new and old songs, getting megahit "Time to Pretend"

out of the way early in the set and proving that there is a lot more to

them than the hit songs that chains like Urban Outfitters and American

Apparel absolutely beat into the ground a few years back and honestly

making up for a day of local market, semi-national acts. 


Critic's Notebook


Random detail: There was valet parking available... for your bicycle.

Random detail 2: Panic Bomber's female vocalist traversed the grounds prior to

MGMT's set smoking the largest cigar I had ever seen. 


Personal bias: I abhor large music festivals.



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