I awoke after about 4 hours of sleep on the hardwood floor of Moving Island. It was time to begin day 2 of Hopscotch and we were all a little groggy. Last Year's Men and Gross Ghost were both slated to play the Churchkey Records and Gravity Records day show at Slim's, so Audrey and I headed that way. I also ate my first sandwich from Jimmy John's, which was no where near as awful as I thought it might be. Apparently I should be a less cynical sandwich eater. Stick around after the jump for the full rundown of day 2, complete with more photos from Audrey.
Last Year's Men was up first at Slim's and for the third time in twenty-four hours they kicked ass. Up next was Gross Ghost. I've gotten to see Gross Ghost some seven or eight times now and it's rarely been the same line-up. Mike and Tre are always at the core, but this past weekend's lineup included guitarist Rob Dipatri and drummer Chris Hutcherson-Riddle (who also plays keyboard in Motor Skills). It was also the best I've seen the project yet, first at this show and then the next night as well.
After Gross Ghost's set Audrey and I hung around chatting with friends for a bit before heading over to the Lenovo Lounge where I was charging my phone. This was also where they were handing out free Vitamin Water, which I made sure to stock up on. Cotton mouth is a bitch and I like to be prepared. While there we also saw the gorgeous homie from Diamond Rings, adorned as usual in all white. He decided to forgo the grey chairs inside the lounge and go for the white ones outside instead, making for a stellar photo.
After charging up we headed out to the City Plaza to check out the Dodos. I've honestly never been too huge on these guys, though I've also never given them a real shot. I was still very thrilled by their set; they put on a great live show that is full of energy and drummer Logan Kroeber is fantastic behind a kit. As Drive-By Truckers began to play we headed up to a balcony to catch up with a friend and grab a crowd shot before bailing out.
I headed out to catch Soft Company at Pour House while Audrey went over to Five Star Restaurant to watch Pepper Rabbit. Pepper Rabbit's combination of electronic pop and melodic folk is one that translated into one of Audrey's favorite shows of the weekend. Soft Company is an indie pop project that features Missy from the Love Language on keyboard and vocal. Their set was full of energy and had the entire crowd moving on their feet.
Next up at Pour House was Braids, so I made sure not to head anywhere. Audrey had also made her way over to catch this set, though we never did find each other. The venue was packed tight, the most full I'd seen any place yet. We had both caught Braids earlier this year at SXSW and it was one of our favorite shows that week. This show was of no exception to that. Lead singer Raphaelle Standell-Preston has one of the most wonderful live voices I've ever heard, and the entire band plays with such a zest that it's almost impossible not to be wooed by their songs.
After Braids finished I caught up with Eric and Sarah once more. We were on the way to Twin Shadow at Lincoln Theatre so Eric and I decided to put things in a greener perspective before hand. Audrey had made her way over to see some of Generationals set at White Collar Crime before catching up with us just as Twin Shadow's set was starting. If asked what was my favorite show of the weekend there's a good chance I'd say Twin Shadow after staring blankly for a minute and a half while muttering "uh.." repeatedly. I said it yesterday, but praise for the sound system at Lincoln Theatre is needed once more. Credit also goes to the band for playing the songs even more wonderfully than I've heard them recorded.
After Twin Shadow ended Audrey and I made our way over to White Ring. The show was at Five Star Restaurant, where apparently the sound guy has never heard of vocals. The music sounded fantastic and White Ring put on a tremendous performance. For some reason though, the vocals never seemed to be loud enough. I ended the night wondering if this was the fault of the venue or the fault of White Ring. I would find out the next day that it was indeed the venue. After dancing as hard as we could (which really wasn't much by this point) we decided to call it a night. We stayed at Audrey's place in Chapel Hill since she had a bat mitzvah to attend early the next day, and the couch was calling my name.
[All photos © Audrey Melton]