Fedoras: check. Ray-Bans: check. TOMS: check.
Area hipsters converged for Summerfest, an indie music festival showcasing more than 15 different bands ranging from local acts like Chinese School to the big headliners: Matt & Kim, Cold War Kids, Ra Ra Riot and Smith Westerns.
The festival took place Saturday at the Lifestyle Communities Pavilion, and was sponsored by Columbus radio station CD102.5.
Smith Westerns played a quick, half hour set at 6 p.m. that was missed by a lot of people either making their way to the Festival Stage, one of the four LC stages used for the fest, or purchasing drinks or merchandise. They were a good choice to open the Festival Stage after the local acts; however, they wereunderappreciated, as they have a relaxed, laid-back style that doesn’t necessarily command the crowd’s attention like other groups.
Ra Ra Riot went on next and had a killer set, characterized by the band’s fun, funky style and great vocals from lead singer Wes Miles. The Syracuse-based band captivated more attention from the audience than Smith Westerns and was more active in engaging with the crowd as well. As someone who has never listened to Ra Ra Riot before, they’re one of those bands who, as soon as you hear them, you regret not listening to them earlier.
Ra Ra Riot was followed by Cold War Kids, who definitely had a larger stage presence than the previous groups. This might have been due in part to more and more people getting out of the beer line by this point (the people next to me certainly spent a long time there). Cold War Kids definitely appealed to an older crowd, which is when I noticed that a strong majority of the crowd seemed to be older — most people looked like they had been out of college for some time. Cold War Kids had a very entertaining set.
But Matt & Kim absolutely blew the previous bands out of the water. There was no contest.
Though they might seem quirky and cute on their albums, the Brooklyn-based duo came to party. Every song wasamped-up, faster and crazier than the recorded versions, and it made me wonder how drummer Kim Schifino ever calms down and stops standing on top of her drum set long enough for them to record a song in the studio.
They put on more than a show. Really, it was half-rave, half-show, because who was going to stop them from dropping Ace Hood’s “Bugatti” or DJ Khaled’s “All I Do Is Win” so they could dance between songs in their set?
The crowd joined in with the impromptu antics, but no matter how great of a show Matt & Kim put on, I know there was no way I had as much fun as an audience member than they did on stage.
They kicked off the set with “Block After Block,” a single from their sophomore album “Sidewalks,” and played hits such as “Good Ol’ Fashion Nightmare,” “Cameras,” “Daylight” and “Yea Yeah.” The sold-out crowd, myself included, loved every minute of it. If you ever have the chance to get to a Matt & Kim concert, by all means, get there. You won’t be disappointed.