This year marked the fourth anniversary of Disc Jam, and the festival is only growing and extending from here on out. Disc Jams Festival grounds offered luscious grassy camping areas, along with two swimming pools featuring VIP poolside sets and a bar. A morning stroll on the gorgeous greens of the golf course, provides a much needed solace from the rage storm. The main stage featured music till 1am every night, along with late night sets indoors in the grand music hall featuring amazing late night sets highlighted by an awesome and depth enhancing laser show. Despite the rain Disc Jam Festival kicked off with Jamin Toast. A number of eager festival goers gathered in front of the main stage wielding ponchos, umbrellas, and whatever they could find to keep the rain off. The crowd grooved their way through the rain and all the way until the jams started to get heavy with Jimkatas’ awesome set followed by The Breakfast who threw down and brought the night time festival energy with daylight still going strong.
The rain started to clear and the lush grass in front of the main stages provided an awesome place to stand, and sit as it dried up quickly. The vendors were cranking out over the top delicious food that seemed almost too good to be true for music festival dining, let alone in any format. The vendors offered a variety of sandwiches, pizza, desserts, vegetarian food, and nearly any thing you could think of. The most standout eating experience I had that weekend was with “Gouda Boys” from whom I was a regular in their food line. I had ventured all up and down the menu and finally landed on the “Jack White” a shaved steak sandwich with macaroni and cheese on top, accented with amazingly high quality maple bacon and topped of with your choice of eggs on top. The “Gouda Boys” successfully killed the food game that weekend with their whimsical selections and extreme high quality dining. The performers hired by Disc Jam had hooped their way through the rain and now in the clear weather, were in full swing weaving and dipping on the side of the stage in the smoothest flowing and mesmerizing motions.
The hoopers were just as much an aspect of the weekends performances as the light show and musicians and created a great vibe for the stage area. Twiddle took the stage Friday evening, quickly eradicating those who had been hiding in their tents previous to the set. The crowd for the Twiddle set and the entire weekend was great, full of people who love live music and knew how to respect each other, all while having a great time. Following Twiddle, Turkuaz threw down one of the most memorable performances of the entire weekend, even incorporating an awesome cover of the Talking Heads “Girlfriend is Better”. Turkuaz shredded the outdoor venue to pieces as if they were playing to a crowd of hundreds of thousands and it was their last show ever. Kung-Fu took the stage and Tim Palmieri ripped his way through the set bringing up the already peaking energy level through the roof. The band delivered a solid and memorable set that left you shaking your head in disbelief of the nights events that had transpired.
Saturday the stage was taken by brass force with Goospimp whose crazily catchy dance beats and horns section provided a heavy wall of sound to dance to for the Disc Jam Festival audience. The dancing never ceased as lespecial continued the dance party with their alien death dance funk sound that is truly unique in the jam band scene. Soon after, Consider the Source brought their one of a kind middle eastern, heavy progressive rock jam style to the stage. The darkness started to fall as the lights pierced farther and farther out over the crowd, and the jams got heavier and darker. This performance, was my first time witnessing Consider the Source, and they really impressed me with their synchronicity on stage, and their clear perfect communication as musicians.
Dopapod took over after Consider the Sources’ set to carry on the exceedingly ever impressive and intense night of live music. The lead guitarist Rob Compa beamed from ear to ear confidently as he gazed out over the eagerely awaiting crowd. Dopapod played an amazing show, and the jams were so smoothly flowing and organic it reminded me of a Phish show, as if they had been touring for decades. The easy flowing jams that Dopapod brought were indescribable and incredibly natural. The Dopapod set capped off the overwhelmingly stacked Saturday night.
The amount of skilled musicians that converged at Disc Jam was truly impressive and a real feat by the organizers, bands from all around, large and small, all delivered beautiful and well thought out shows for the jam and dance loving crowd. Sunday was the perfect wrap up for the awesome jam package that the weekend delivered. The Nth Power took the stage in the evening with an amazing stage presence. The Nth Power knows how to perform for the crowd, with riveting drum solo’s between their bongo playing percussionist and drummer that brought the crowd into a tribal like state of dance.
The lead guitarist Nick Cassarino was extremely animated and radiated joy from his beaming face with every note he played. A few hours later, Particle took the stage featuring their former bassist Eric Gould (Pink Talking Fish). The lead guitarist Ben Combe played with an insane amount of livetronica energy and a crazy power stance signature to his playing style. Particle grooved their way smoothly across genres of music dabbling in between light aural jams and heavy electronica.
The wall of sound Particle creates is a formidable one, with not one note too many or too little notes, all placed in just the right spots to create a perfect blend. The lights pierced the night as did the digital jam shredding vibrations that the band produced. Disc Jam Festival was a magnificent weekend and I wouldn't trade it for anything.
A special thanks to Tony Scavone!
Words and Photos: Joe Schlee
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