Music festivals are endurance tests. Standing, cheering, singing and drinking for hours on end can take a toll on one’s body. But, they only come around once a year (well, kind of), so it’s best to revel in all they have to offer.
Friday’s Outside Lands schedule is a beauty — there are more than enough intriguing acts to satiate the average festival-goer from noon until close. However, when suspender-rock kings Mumford and Sons (or EDM heavyweight Amon Tobin, depending on your fancy) depart the stage at 10 p.m., that doesn’t mean the night has to end.
The Drums — a synth-pop duo who craft unapologetically-gloomy tunes that inexplicably make you want to dance (sample lyric: You Were My Best Friend/But Then You Died) — will be performing at Brick and Mortar Music Hall on Friday as part of the Outside Lands’ night show series. If you’re feeling beat after a long day in Golden Gate Park, watching the Drums perform is your best ticket to rejuvenation-ville.
While unorthodox (definitely unorthodox), Drums’ frontman Jonny Pierce has some of the best on-stage dance moves in the business, and the band’s unique sound (imagine if Ian Curtis was a fan of Duran Duran) is invigorating to see live. The Drums are still playing behind their excellent third album, Encyclopedia, a bold collection of more abstract, asymmetrical songs that represent a departure from the pop-leanings of their first two albums. Imbued with strange synths and abrupt changes in pace, Encyclopedia is a moodier, yet more-confident effort than its predecessors, likely the result of the Drums reducing their roster from four members to two (just Pierce and fellow band-founder Jacob Graham) for its recording.
There are plenty of dark moments on the album (Pierce, who is gay, grew up in heavily-religious home, so conflict with that upbringing is a recurring theme), but the Drums are still a band whose primary specialty is getting legs to shake and hips to move (this is a band whose most famous song is “Let’s Go Surfing,” after all).
The Drums are scheduled to go on at 11 p.m. on Friday night at Brick and Mortar. By the end of their show, you’ll be feeling refreshed, renewed and ready to take on another day of Outside Lands.