A Hawk and a Hacksaw: Unusual instrumentation. Sometimes enjoyable, but sometimes too much “orchestra jam band.”
Caribou: Not for me.
Fleet Foxes: Yay!! My favorite performance of the weekend. They are lush and layered and lovely and I really really loved it, despite the sound completely dropping out for a song in the middle there. (But you’ve got to expect that with outdoor festivals.) Their harmonization is just wonderful.
Dizzee Rascal: So much fun!! I’ve heard it argued otherwise, but in my opinion rap is generally a more reliable performance at these outdoor fests because it just plain doesn’t matter how crappy the “music” in the background sounds / distorted, dropping in and out, what have you. With actual bands, that’s a problem. But as long as the rapper is loud and lively, he can still sound awesome despite those kinds of outdoor fest problems.
The Hold Steady: Pretty sizzling set…the bromance* crowd was really into it. But I’ve never listened to their follow-up albums the way I did to their first, and I’ve seen them a ton of times (this was the 4th or 5th, but I’ll go with 4th). So while it seemed high energy and the crowd was excited, I felt more laidback about the whole thing.
Jarvis Cocker: Somehow the sound was completely screwed up and I could barely hear the dude at all. So we left.
*Seems this word is in the air these days. First Joss Whedon going on about his bromance feelings toward Tahmoh at ComicCon. Then this post over at NPR Monitor Mix. EVERY Hold Steady show I’ve been to has been a total bromance and you’ll see many of her commenters suggested it as well.