One of the best aspects of the Pitchfork Music Festival is that bands who normally don’t have the luxury of spacious stages and friendly set times, get much better treatment than they would at get at any other festival. Herein lies one of the festivals main weaknesses as well. Some bands just don’t translate well to the open air of the festival setting. Seeing F*ck Buttons up close, those piercing squelches and squeals conjured from their tabletop electronics sound more dynamic and more nuanced than on disc. You can see how Andrew Hung and Benjamin John Power use visual cues to decide how hard and how thick to lay down their rumbling waves of fuzz, and you can see how those deathly screams from Power, the ones that sound as if they’re coming from the damnedest demon in the lowest level of hell, come from a kid’s toy microphone. However, if you were at the back of the crowd, then all you heard was something similar to the noise of heavy machinery stripping and paving a city street.
All photos by Jeff Sierputowski
More photos from Pitchfork 2008 can be found here.