Animal Collective, Hop Along, Vulfpeck and More @ the Project Pabst Citywide Festival at the Electric Factory.
The promoters of Project Pabst Citywide Festival made a wise choice in selecting the Electric Factory for the grand finale of their first-ever week-long Citywide Festival in Philadelphia. No other venue in the city seems to elicit the same complicated mix of irony and sincerity that the Electric Factory does, consistently bringing bands for teenagers, as well as the 21+ indie rock set.
And on this rain-soaked Saturday, both inside and outside the venue, it was unclear where the branding ended and the fans began.
Some festival-goers wore Pabst shirts and hoodies, drank PBR from cans in PBR coozies and generally embodied every aspect that the beer represents. They stood outside, under a tent or in the rain, uncaring as they smoked cigarettes, danced or graffitied a formerly white van parked in front of the entrance. They were a veritable ad, showing what fans of the beer do and listen to.
The music seemed to toggle between louder and brasher acts like Diarrhea Planet, Beach Slang and Guided by Voices to something weirder or more melodic, with bands like Animal Collective, Hop Along and Mac DeMarco.
From the political punk of the Downtown Boys to the Rebirth Brass Band, there seemed to be a way for all the disparate pieces to work together.
At the end of the main portion of the festival, the cartoon backdrop of a PBR can and a shot of whiskey was replaced by Animal Collective’s careful stage display (though it returned for an after party with Son Little and Vulfpeck).
Vulfpeck delivered the day’s most celebrated performances, like “1612,” when most of the audience sang or danced. They closed out a long day of diverse music – and a week of PBR-fueled festivities that included George Clinton, Sister Nancy and lots of local acts.