The sun shined brightly and the first wave of artists brought the jams to match as the 2007 Bonnaroo Music Festival got moving today (June 15) on a sprawling farm in Manchester, Tenn. A handful of act
The sun shined brightly and the first wave of artists brought the jams to match as the 2007 Bonnaroo Music Festival got moving today (June 15) on a sprawling farm in Manchester, Tenn. A handful of acts performed last night as crowds were still rolling in, but today's early slate was packed with sets from James Blood Ulmer, Hot Chip, Tortoise and the Roots.
Ulmer and his trio worked 12-bar blues riffs to maximum effect in the This tent, including a take on the classic "Little Red Rooster." Tortoise also stretched out for long, loose jams on material from its 1998 album "TNT," such as "Swing From the Gutter" and "In Sarah, Mencken, Christ and Beethoven There Were Women and Men." The veteran Chicago instrumentalists reached even farther back for the guitar-driven "Glass Museum," which had been until recently absent from the band's set for years.
Hot Chip got the mid-afternoon audience up and moving with infectious synth-rock that tipped its hat to Devo, Kraftwerk and Depeche Mode on cuts like "(Just Like We) Breakdown" and "Boy From School." Several new songs due as part of a fall album impressed as well.
Rage Against The Machine guitarist Tom Morello transformed his newly reunited band's "Guerrilla Radio" into a solo acoustic protest song during his performance as the Nightwatchman, prefacing it with his hopes that members of the Bush administration will be brought in front of a war crimes tribunal.
Shortly thereafter, the Roots got political in the midst of a wide-ranging set of covers and originals, offering up Bob Dylan's "Masters of War" to the melody of "The Star-Spangled Banner." The group sprinkled in snippets of Ol' Dirty Bastard's "Shimmy Shimmy Ya," Biz Markie's "Just a Friend" and Mims' "This Is Why I'm Hot" into its own material, including "Game Theory" and "Mellow My Man."
Bonnaroo's Friday night highlights include a headlining set from Tool and a SuperJam between Led Zeppelin bassist John Paul Jones, guitarist Ben Harper and Roots drummer ?uestlove. All 80,000 of the festival's allotted tickets sold out in advance.