Photos by Sandy Rivera and John Cabanatan.
Camp was in session over the weekend as ALT 98.7 Summer Camp presented some of the best alternative artists to grace the shores of Long Beach.
“Counselors” guided flocks of joyful campers (music goers) into the grounds of Harry Bridges Park to attend a musical showcase that saw Youngr, Magic Giant, Vance Joy, Lord Huron, Sir Sly, Bleachers and Foster the People set the tone for a memorable sundown event.
Like a dancing camp fire, American indie folk band Magic Giant’s earthish vibes and pulsating energy stirred the crowd, prompting frontman Austin Bisnow to run off stage to sing and dance to their hit, “Let It Burn” within the sea of campers.
Singer-songwriter Vance Joy warmed the hearts of listeners with his entrancing voice. His performance brought perfect strangers together singing in unison throughout the campground with songs like “Riptide”, “Lay It on Me”, “Fire and the Flood” and “Georgia”.
Yet it was Sir Sly’s psychedelic tones and raw lyrics that had campers trancing in and out on a “High”. There was no hiding the dark emotions displayed behind Landon Jacob’s, Hayden Coplen’s and Jason Suwito’s colorful outfits.
Bleachers’ frontman Jack Antonoff and his band added fuel to the fire, had the entire crowd on their feet and clambering up onto each others’ shoulders to watch as he blazed through his 90s inspired pop-alternative album Gone Now. Songs like “Don’t Take The Money” and “I Wanna Get Better” felt more like summer anthems than just a catchy song.
ALT 98.7 Summer Camp was a homecoming show for San Fernando’s own HAIM. As the sun set, the three sisters received a roaring ovation as they took the stage. Lead sister Danielle Haim rewarded us with a “A Little of Your Love” from their second album, Something To Tell You, before letting Alana and Este compete over which one would escort a fan to prom. The trio ended their set with an epic triple drum solo.
Fans were also treated to a special performance from Seattle indie-folk band The Head and the Heart. Coming back from a two-year hiatus, they showed no rust and delivered powerful ballads from their albums Signs of Light and Let’s Be Still.
Foster The People concluded the event with a performance like no other. The lights on stage could be seen far across the Long Beach shoreline like a burning camp fire which matched their 60’s psychedelia-inspired third album Sacred Heart Club. And they did not disappoint.
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