Big and small, rock and country, here are our favorites from Day 1!
Diarrhea Planet: The boys of DP are always a treat, but they seemed particularly silly on Saturday morning. It could be because they were sleep deprived, or it could be that the sun was shining and the weather was right, but fans loved it! Although they had played in Memphis less than 12 hours before their set at LouFest and were self proclaimed “sleepy boys” they performed with a storm of energy that no other band could rival. Their setlist was mostly comprised of songs from 2016’s Turn to Gold and 2013’s I’m Rich Beyond Your Wildest Dreams, and featured head banging, hip shaking, guitar biting, lots of crowd interaction, and of course, screaming guitars. These guys know how to rock, and they have one hell of a time doing it!
Caveman: This New York band really blew me away. Down at the Shade Stage, the band came on and drenched festival goers in a luxurious blanket of sound. Their music is sweeping, richly layered, and exactly what you would want to be listening to on a sunny day at a music festival. They even commented on the beautiful weather and said that the last time they were in St. Louis was one of the coldest days of the year. The guys tested out some new material on fans, which went over well. The band was laid back and appreciative of the people who came out to see them. Singer Matthew Iwanusa said, “Either you paid to be in here or you snuck in…but come on, let’s party!” Make sure to check them out next time they’re in town!
Frightened Rabbit: Despite the fact that their lyrics are rather somber, the guys of Frightened Rabbit were extremely entertaining during their set. The band got chummy with fans and joked about needing to hire a hitman to take out whoever was responsible for them not playing in St. Louis for such a long time, which got fans laughing and cheering. Later during their set, lead singer Scott Hutchinson said, “We want to see some polite courtship during this song. Who’s up for some polite courtship?!” He said he would not allow grinding at their show and that we were to say “please” to our dance partners before, and “thank you” at the end. Everyone was in hysterics, and everyone danced whimsically to the song. All in all, their set had everything you would want from a live performance. And even though Hutchison said he was sorry to rain on our parade with their sad songs, their songs are airy and upbeat if you don’t focus on the lyrics—the perfect packaging for some serious material.
Band of Horses: I have never seen Band of Horses live, but I was surprised at how much energy they had on stage. I usually think of them as a mellower band, but singer Ben Bridwell really got up and did the damn thing. The music was crisp and clear, and Bridwell got fans to jump around and sing along with the music.
Chris Stapleton: This man and his band are absolutely incredible live. Stapleton played his award winning album, Traveller, almost in its entirety, included a few songs from his previous band, The SteelDrivers, and “Free Bird” showed up mid set! For fans that had trudged through the mud and cooked under the hot sun all day to make it to this show, it was well worth the wait.
For photos from more Saturday bands, click here.