When I saw the concert info hit the newswire, I couldn’t fumble my credit card out of my wallet fast enough. Bon Iver playing a 6am sunrise show on Sunday, with doors opening the night before at midnight. In a cemetery.
Concert-goers were welcome to come and camp on the cemetery lawn (not on grave sites) with food & drink and stay up with the various media provided; Planet Earth video loops, background DJ music and a screening of the film Bottle Rocket at 2am. All for $25.
I packed the Xtracycle full of pillows, blankets, fleece, a thermos full of hot coffee and a bottle of Kahlua. We claimed our spot in front of the sound techs for a dead-center view and unpacked our take-out dinner at 1:00am.
The coffee helped as the fog settled in and dew began to coat everything with moisture. About halfway through the film, somewhere around 3am I passed out, surrounded by strangers.
At around 5:30am I woke up to an unfamiliar sound. They had brought in a group of Buddhist monks to chant a prayer for the living (us) and for the non (everyone else). What a bizarre, fantastic way to enter the day.
Justin aka Bon Iver took the stage at 6 as billed. Still dark out. He eased into his set with a mellow tune or two but the mellowness didn’t last long. He then tore into the rest of his set list at full-amp with his 3 bandmates. Electric guitars ripping, drums pounded. Wake up neighbors! Awesome.