It's been a week since the fourth year of Outside Lands 2011 ended at Golden Gate Park, the most incredible day of my summer. To start with, I'm not going to write this like a professional review – I've read too many amusing stories on tumblr for that. So I'll compensate with a half and half.
The festival, back to its original three-day form, has yet to disappoint with its lineup, except for the time scheduling (MGMT and Foster the People at the same time?) which didn't go down well with a lot of people. With MGMT, Phish, Big Audio Dynamite, Muse, Arctic Monkeys, Arcade Fire and super loved indie bands, it was such a tough choice which day to go, let alone which stages. Unfortunately, I wasn't one of the lucky bastards who got their hands on $123 three-day passes on Craigslist, and was more than grateful for my $100 one-day ticket.
I was supposed to wake up at 5 AM on Friday morning, but of course, I wake up at 6 when my friend arrives to pick me up. I had about 50 seconds to gather my stuff together and dash out the door like a madman. So off we went to the San Jose Caltrain station in my pajamas, with my hair soaked in hot pink Manic Panic from the night before, wrapped in a plastic bag. FABULOUS. Make use of the bullet train's tiny sink to rinse it off and dress properly (for a festival at least). People look at me as if they've never seen anyone with paper towels wrapped around a dip dye ponytail at 6:30 in the morning before. Commuters. When we reach San Francisco, we get out with people dressed in business suits and office clothes. Soleil and I could not have stood out more – the only two teenagers in Outside Lands style out this early in the morning in such a crowd.
Good thing we were taking the MUNI bus at this time, because later on public transportation would be... not so convenient. I later read about some old man getting more and more frustrated as he tried to board MUNI only to find it completely full each time. Those darn Outside Land attendees!
I leave my friend at the Polo Fields with a bunch of girls, some who came all the way from Canada, prepared to wait 5+ hours for MGMT and listen to bands they've never heard of. As much as I like MGMT, I needed to get to the Sutro stage rail for my bands. Release the Sunbird is playing and a respectable crowd is already up over there. Local and loved Rogue Wave's frontman (Zach Rogue)'s new side project is warm and mellow, just the perfect start for what's to come.