iHeartRadio kicked off their inaugural ALTer Ego music festival this past Friday at The Forum, and let me tell you, it was pretty awesome. The festival featured performances by Mumford and Sons, Cage the Elephant, Beck, Spoon, Walk the Moon, Dashboard Confessional, The National and more.
For a brand that constantly books the world’s biggest pop stars, it’s nice to see iHeartRadio finally put on a music festival with some of the best alternative acts out there. It was quite refreshing to say the least.
Mumford and Sons opened the show, tugging on the heartstrings of all with those charming lyrics and vocals. Indie darlings (and Grimy Goods favorite) Spoon, dropped their sexy indie rock and had everyone wondering who they were. Mind you, this is an iHeartRadio event and most listeners of iHeart Radio aren’t cool enough to know who Spoon are … kidding! Well, not really. Most iHeart listeners press play on the likes Taylor Swift and such, not badasses like Spoon.
Up next next were Walk The Moon. The band had the crowd singing along to their catchy indie pop anthems, while Dashboard Confessional followed up their set with a nostalgic throwback to that one emo boy or girl you used to date.
We were looking forward to The Nationals’ set, but in all honesty, it was rather lackluster. Not sure what was going on with them, but lead singer Matt Berninger just didn’t seem into it. We’ve covered The National many times and they always deliver, but this performance was not quite on point. The emotions and feelings didn’t pour out of you like they do at most of their shows. I attribute it to the crowd. Again, most of them had no idea who this great band was. And if the band’s not feeling the crowd, well …
Beck rolled out onto the stage next with his iconic “Loser” and all us old(er) folk were relishing in our high school memories. As always, Beck was cool as a cucumber. He even laid down some beatboxing’ harmonica jams.
And the grand finale: Cage The Elephant! Of course they fucking ruled. And of course the crowd went fucking nuts, and not just because many of them were pretty drunk by this point, but because Cage The Elephant are just sensational performers. So much wild, funky energy.
iHeart Rado’s inaugural ALTer Ego music festival was a damn good time. We look forward to its return!
Photography: Danielle Gornbein