A good concert experience isn’t hard to come by, especially for a devout music lover, but there’s something truly special about a good concert in the summertime. We shed layers as our good moods rise with the temperature, letting the truly sublime pervade the aeon. As a tribute to the perfect season for concert-viewing, we present a list of our favorite summer concerts to evoke our nostalgia for the festivals of years past. Come be nostalgic with us, and share your favorite summer concert experiences in the comments.
Falls Festival, 1997
Summer concerts are dime-a-dozen, but they say you always remember your first, so here’s the first proper summer festival I ever went to: the second-ever installment of the Falls Festival, now a hugely successful transnational franchise in Australia, but back then an endearingly disorganized gathering for surfers and reprobates in a coastal town two hours’ drive from Melbourne. It was New Year’s Eve, 1997, and my friend Jonno and I drove down with the express purpose of seeing headliner Iggy Pop. We took a crate of beer, a tent that neither of us had any idea how to pitch, and not enough clean socks. The rest of the bill was pretty uninspiring surf-punk and Australian indie, but boy was Iggy ever awesome. He did the New Year’s countdown (“10… 9… 8… 7… 6… 5… 4… 3… 2… FUCK!”), tore through a bunch of Stooges song and solo highlights, humped his amplifier, and demanded throughout that his band play faster (a demand they studiously ignored). At the end of his set, he invited a shitload of people up onto the stage, and one rather attractive girl stood right behind him and placed both of her hands down his jeans. He stood, arms raised, beaming at 1998. I thought to myself that it must be pretty great to be Iggy Pop. I still have the broadcast of the performance on a cassette tape somewhere. It doesn’t feel like 15 years ago. — Tom Hawking, Music Editor