All of you cardigan'd, horn rimmed popkids (and I'm including myself in that category, so be quiet) out there better start thinking about your plans for next weekend. This could be a battle of epic proportions:
Friday, November 9th through Sunday, November 11th, this year's installment of the colossal Popfest! New England is happening at the Elevens in Northampton, with more tambourines & handclaps than you can fathom. In particular, I would like to voice my support for the awesome Bunnygrunt, who are headlining the opening night, if you're into things like energetic Superchunk-y pop-punk with co-ed vocals, as well as the Tullycraft-meets-Beat Happening styled Lil' Hospital, who are playing the Sunday afternoon matinee show. There's a kick-ass, download-able sampler featuring all of the bands on the Popfest! roster up here that I highly recommend checking out.
But before you cough up the cash for one of those three-day Popfest! passes, you should probably be aware of the fact that Expressway to Yr Skull favorites Yo La Tengo are going to be at Mass MoCA in North Adams on Saturday, November 10th as part of their "Freewheeling" tour. From their website: "The Freewheeling Yo La Tengo Tour is a rare opportunity to see this ever-surprising band in a setting more intimate and interactive than any tour in their 23-year career. A little bit "Storytellers", a little bit "Unplugged", with a soupcon of their famously varied Hanukkah shows, it will feature the band playing an almost-acoustic set of songs from their entire catalog, with stories about their life as a band, and an encouraged back-and-forth with the audience. Already famous for never playing the same show twice, this fresh look at Yo La Tengo offers rare insight into one of the most important, unique, and beloved bands in American rock. Yo La Tengo's latest CD, I Am Not Afraid Of You And I Will Beat Your Ass, will be the springboard for these shows, though anything can and will happen from there". Mass MoCa shows are pretty incredible (seeing Mission of Burma there was nothing short of mind-blowing) & Yo La Tengo has yet to disappoint me live.
So here's my proposal: Hit up Popfest! on Friday, make the trip out to North Adams for Yo La Tengo on Saturday & spend your Sunday going through indie-pop overload at the matinee/evening Popfest! shows. And after all of that, you'll probably be ready to catch a Lightning Bolt show or something to make up for things.