Bumbershoot The Saturday Knights
posted by September 1 at 13:10 PMon
So Kid Sister cancelled right around the time the Stranger’s Bumbershoot Guide was hitting the presses, leaving a big TBA on the printed schedule. A TBA gracefully filled by TSK, who are always, always game to, you know, Mingle. Andrew Matson introduced them, but I was busy making my way over from the Weakerthans. Tilson and Barfly are perfectly complimentary MCs—Tilson all bright cartoonish energy; Barfly all derelict and gruff. Suspence goes beyond DJing and scratching to play tambourine, sing choruses, and destroy every mic stand he can get his hands on. And their backing band, featuring Truckasauras/Foscil’s Tyler Swan sitting in on drums, was rollicking but not overbearing.
The band front-loaded their set hard, kicking off with “45,” and keeping the momentum up through “Count it Off,” “Dog Park,” the pop-singer shout out “Foreign Affair.” The Knights were fun as ever, the ideal summer festival act, hip hop enough for the heads, rock enough for the rest, affable as all hell, working the hometown crowd with easy aplomb. They peaked, though, with a fun, affectionate little flip of the Fleet Foxes “White Winter Hymnal.” First, they played it’s chorus through straight, Tilson singing along, and then Spencer looped the chorus, dropped a beat, and Tilson just murdered it: “I was walking in the snow/I was picking up the snow/Tryin ’ to bag up into kilos/and move it on the block/and buy myself a yacht/to go boating with some rich folks” (those lyrics are a best guess). The keys were a little too loud, drowning out the Fleet Foxes loop, but it was otherwise totally inspired.
Their set dragged a bit after that, as they padded out their hour-long slot with some call-and-response and freestyles, including a flip of Band of Horses’ “The Funeral” and a number sampling the Black Keys, who were playing simultaneously at Memorial Stadium. For the latter song, they were joined by guest MCs Bles One (“I’m gonna murder this weed/smoke it in the first degree”) and Gatsby, who delivered an especially breathless, restless verse. Nothing quite topped that Fleet Foxes grab though. That shit was priceless.