Camp Bisco Day One: LCD Soundsystem, the Dance Tent and people watching

The festival opening salvo is a win with James Murphy and crew, but people watching is even more compelling.

Night One of Camp Bisco is officially in the books and Day Two is already underway. My regular 8-to-5 might keep me from getting back to the grounds before Thievary Corporation tonight, but it provides the perfect opportunity to provide a quick update (since the festival grounds don't have WiFi and aren't even very cell friendly).

The full recap is coming early next week, but here are some Night One highlights to tide you over:

  • LCD Soundsystem totally lives up to the hype. James Murphy is strangely engaging as a front man who looks like he could be your uncle or father (both in attire and physical dimensions). You'd also think a band billed as too hip to be called hip would struggle at a festival made for fans of the Disco Biscuits, but Murphy and company killed it. There was almost a gutteral, visceral or tribal connection between stage and crowd as everyone danced like they had no control over their bodies. The band went through all the major staples of their catalogue and no matter if it was ballady or beats-ridden, each song was a crowd pleaser. I only wish I could've compelled some "Dance Yrself Clean" from them.


  • Caribou was the first act I managed to see in the "Dance Tent" on site late yesterday. The band was really clean sounding live and despite seeming mellow for a venue labeled the "Dance Tent," everyone was into them. The tent itself seems like the great idea of the festival: provides overhead coverage during likely unbelievably hot middays, sneaks some surprisingly good acts in there despite being away from the main stages and becomes the go-to stop after 11 p.m. It's a genius idea.


  • Day One has to go down in the books as a W for LCD Soundsystem, but the most compelling part of the entire festival could simply be the people watching. I've never been to an outdoor festival and while ATP New York is quirky in its own right, it wasn't the scene I'd heard about from festival lure. Camp Bisco seems to fit the bill to a T: homemade clothes, outdated jerseys that would make proud, bikini tops and shirtless men everywhere, a security guy who was surprised I didn't have prescription or recreational drugs, loads and loads of onlookers mezmorized by fire dancers and their African drum accompanist. Check back for some more on this in the final recap, but this crowd is everything you'd hope from first impressions. For a better feel of this group, here are two questions posed to me from random concert-goers (ala Overheard in NYC):

"Who are shooting for again? NewsHouse? You just wanted to get free passes to Camp Bisco, huh?"

"Anybody see any white people without shirts? White people without shirts."


Check out coverage of Camp Bisco Day Two, Day Three and follow along on Twitter (or read the #Camp Bisco hashtag)

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