I spent most of Sunday afternoon on Treat Street in the Mission. Blue skies and sunshine greeting the first ever Rock Make Street Festival, co-organized by the rock stars at the Bay Bridged, Tartufi and Whiz Bang Fabrics.
It was a wholly relaxing afternoon with good music, interesting crafts and cool people to chat with. With two stages set up at opposite ends of the block and bands alternating between the two (and crafts between), the only rushing around was portions of the crowd going between the stages during the short set change over times. The stages were actually just tents and the bands being on even ground with the audience made them even more approachable than the normally quite approachable bands are. Almost everything about the afternoon seemed to be geared toward it being a pleasant experience.
Here’s a run down of who I saw.
Settler from San Jose: I arrived right before Settler’s set. While their post rock sound wasn’t ground breaking, it was enjoyable and good.
French Miami: I was obsessed with their “Science Fiction” back in April and I’ve liked their whole EP but I hadn’t seen them before. They put on a pretty tight and energetic set. I’d like to see them again some time. (If you missed this set, they’re playing Tuesday the 26th at the Bottom of the Hill.)
Emily Jane White (myspace): I’ve seen her a few times now and it’s always been decent, but here her band seemed tighter and the addition of another guitarist/ pedal steel player helped fill out the sound. This was definitely the best I’ve seen her.
Silian Rail: They’d been recommended to me by Will at New & Used Records as really good instrumental indie pop. I’d put they more in line with instrumental indie rock but I did like their sound. The two members (guitar + drums) put on a good show.
Tartufi: I chose the wrong time to leave to get a snack. I would have liked to seen their set.
Low Red Land (myspace)
I’d only see them acoustic and on a roof top. Their electric set at the festival was completely different. I didn’t love every song, but they were engaging in the amount of energy they put into their songs and I enjoyed the set overall.
Originally I was a little sad or surprised that the festival was scheduled the same day as Outside Lands’ last day, but in the end I felt it provided an appropriate juxtaposition to that giant, corporate festival: small, DIY, approachable and communal.