Cornerstone 1999: Jason’s Diary, July 4

Today’s concerts included Bumblepuppy, Judean Radiostatic, Scientific, and Danielson Famile.
Judean radiostatic cornerstone 1999 1
Judean Radiostatic

The day that I was dreading was finally here. It’s so easy to forget about real life at Cornerstone. Unfortunately, while I was watching Time Bandits last night, it hit me that Cornerstone was almost over. Luckily, though, it ended with a bang.

Sunday had some great experiences and some great memories. First of all, we all went down to the lake for the baptism service. There, Nolan got baptized. I’m always impressed at how mature, spiritually, this guy has grown since I’ve met him.

After the service, I headed back to the New Band Stage to catch some of Bumblepuppy. Described as a “moody art pop” group, I was pleasantly surprised. Even though they were on the New Band Stage, they were very polished and professional. I heard elements of Radiohead and Zooropa-era U2 (but without the baggage of knowing that U2 used to be so much better). A very cool band that managed to make pop that could be commercially successful without sounding commercial at all.

Ater hanging around for a bit, we headed back over to the New Band Stage to catch Judean Radiostatic, a minimal EMB/industrial band. They were pretty cool, pumping out very bass-heavy/rhythm-oriented sounds with distorted vocals. Not exactly my cup of tea, although the female vocals were definitely a nice change of pace. Nolan really got into them.

I spent most of the day getting ready for the final stages of the fest. I ran into town to get some stuff for the Joy Electric show, including some new shoes since the ones I was wearing were pretty well trashed.

After eating a nutritious meal of chips and salsa with Greer and Tricia, we caught The Juliana Theory. Although Greer and Tricia really dug them, they didn’t really grab me. They’re music was definitely solid, but nothing spectacular. The lead singer was very entertaining and had a solid presence, throwing all sorts of rock star poses and cliches.

While heading to the store to get some film, I suddenly heard some sounds that reminded me of a band I had totally forgot about seeing. Thankfully, I was able to catch a little bit of Scientific’s set. Scientific is definitely influenced by early ’80s New Wave Pop, but build off the style. Although the flourishes are there, Scientific is nothing derivative. Another band whose CD I’d have got if I had more money.

After Scientific, it was time to get ready for Joy Electric. Last year, we all wore white. This year, we all wore red. After getting all taped up and set, we headed to the Asylum to hook up with everyone. Then it was off to the Dance Tent, where Juan (the biggest Joy Electric fan I’ve ever met) was waiting in his fabulous Mork-meets-Pringles outfit.

Joy Electric put on the most intense show of the fest. In many ways, in terms of crowd energy, it was better than some hardcore shows I’ve been to. Although Ronnie’s vocals were a little weak (it seemed like the audience knew the words better than he did), none of us minded. And when they played “Monosynth” and “I’m Okay You’re Okay” (an MxPx cover), the tent practically exploded.

One thing that sucks about Cornerstone is the fact that you will miss bands because of scheduling conflicts. Unfortunately, this year I was unable to see Soul-Junk (whose performance last year was one of the most surreal experiences of my life) and could only catch the last few songs of Danielson Famile. Danielson Famile is always a treat to see live. They have a vibe, a wholesome pure approach to music that really appeals to me.

After seeing Danielson Famile (and getting some much needed beverages), we headed back to the Dance Tent, where we spent the rest of the night. Unfortunately, we missed Cloud2Ground and Faith Massive (both of whom I really wanted to see), but did catch Antidote and Prophecy of P.A.N.I.C. There was just something about the energy in that tent, just watching hundreds of kids dancing and making a joyful noise, and all that.

Nolan and Jenn took off around 3:30 or 4:00 in the morning. I went back to the site to find my car’s battery dead. And I took the first shower I’d taken all week long. It seemed a fitting way to close out the week.

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