Highlights from Bumbershoot day three: Closing out the holiday weekend with SZA, Sasha Sloan and Lovelytheband
Bumbershoot day three was a slow day in comparison to Saturday’s busy frenzy, featuring dreamy performers like SZA, Bahamas and Sasha Sloan.
Lovelytheband drew a noticeably larger crowd to the Fisher Green stage than the afternoon sets of the days before, opening with a few upbeat yet mellow tunes. During “coachella,” lead singer Mitchy Collins said he wrote the song after attending the Indio, California music festival, but changed the words of the chorus to “Bumbershoot” to make the song more fitting for the occasion. Lovelytheband played on, covering club hit “Pony” by Ginuwine and ending the set with their popular alt-radio single, “broken.” Stay tuned for a Q&A with lovelytheband.
Sasha Sloan was slightly late to her set at the Mural Amphitheatre. She appeared to have issues with her microphone as she began singing her opening song “Here,” before the mic suddenly began working properly. Sloan introduced herself and told the audience that her Sad Girl album prefaced a break-up: “It’s about leaving my ex boyfriend. My whole EP became a roast of this poor guys life.” As the sad pop continued, more and more people settled around the stage where Sloan sang into the late afternoon sun. MORE: Q&A with Sasha Sloan on “sad girl” and collaborating with ODESZA.
Bahamas, aka Afie Jurvanen, followed Black Pistol Fire at the Mural Amphitheatre wearing an all beige track outfit. Jurvanen remarked that he began the day in Aspen, Colorado after having played at a jazz festival, a rare occasion he said, but was glad to be at Bumbershoot.
What had been the tight cluster of EDM artist Fisher’s performance the day before in the Ex Hall became a steamy and crowded underground dance party featuring London on tha Track. Before even stepping inside the hall to descend down the stairs, a blast of hot, wet air rushed through the door as if carried out by the blaring bass from inside. The floor was thick with glitter shaken off from all the dancing bodies moving through the strobes and rainbow lights. At the end of London on tha Track’s set, confetti blasted from the stage and rained down on the festival-goers.
The slow, distorted strumming of SZA’s “Supermodel,” from her 2017 album “Ctrl,” played as she made her entrance to the Main Stage in a ruffled, white crop top and striped Nike running pants. Like Sasha Sloan’s performance earlier in the day, she seemed to have technical difficulties. The mic was quiet and distorted until halfway through the song, when her voice exploded through the stadium loud and clear, triggering a happy response from the crowd.
SZA explained to the festival-goers that she had woken up that Sunday morning feeling sad, but the crowd had made her feel better in no time. This reflected in her body language; she began center-stage and relatively stationary, but as her performance unfolded, SZA exuded confidence. Her long, curly hair billowed behind her, bringing her “Pretty Little Bird” lyrics to mind: “I wanna take all of my hair down and let you lay in it,” her black underwear slightly exposed as the mic receiver shook heavily on her hip with her dancing. Each song that she played was from “Ctrl,” but her live performance delivered heavier R&B vibes through more sustained bass, guitar and drum.
SZA tastefully wove personal experiences and revealed song inspirations throughout her set. Before “Drew Barrymore,” SZA explained that she wrote the song after going to a party that she really didn’t want to go to, and how her attempts to make it better by bringing a lot of weed didn’t work. She then encouraged the crowd to not do anything they don’t want to. Eventually, her banter led the festival-goers to her last song “20 Something.”
SZA was the only headliner to have an encore at the 2018 Bumbershoot music festival. After the lights went down with “20 Something,” an elaborate firework show launched from behind the main stage. SZA then came back out and performed her single she produced with Kendrick Lamar, “All the Stars,” from the Black Panther soundtrack. Her long hair whipped around the corner as she headed off stage for the last time, concluding her performance with a “Goodnight, Seattle!”
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