Festival Imperial

There’s a certain irony to a Chicagoan first seeing Smashing Pumpkins in concert in central america… in my defense, I didn’t get into Smashing until after I’d moved away for school. By the time I was back in town they’d broken up and Billy Corgan was going through his Zwan phase.


Festival Imperial rocked as hard as it should, providing the kind of thrills a festival show should. Some folks were bummed by Smashing Pumpkins’ long jam featuring “What’s that Sound” and “The Star Spangled Banner,” but it was a mighty fine show. (Okay… so I started heading toward the exit after 20m of jam… I had to get up early the next morning. I at least stayed close enough to hear them finish up with Cherub Rock.)

Incubus was also on order that night, they put in a fine performance, and one that better suited the general expectation of “they’re going to play the songs we all love.” A little jamming, but not much.


I’d have liked 10-15 minute jams from them both, but I’m one of those snotty “you can see a band’s musicianship in their ability to jam without it sucking” kinds of people.

Good festival… and the best bus service I’ve ever had at a rock show. Wandered around for 45 minutes looking for the buses due to bad signage and still managed to beat home friends that had driven and got stuck in the post-concert traffic.


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