music / Reviews

Lackawanna Music Festival – Pier A, Hoboken, NJ (8.18.12)

August 20, 2012 | Posted by Matt Arena

Free festivals are one of the best perks of summer. It’s the rare chance to see some pretty big bands for a price that you can’t beat; nothing. Sponsored by Ben & Jerry’s (who were also giving out free samples of their amazing peanut butter and banana frozen yogurt), Lackawanna Music Festival turned out to be one of the summer’s best. With bands like Tokyo Police Club, Vacationer, We Barbarians, and Lights Resolve, it was one of the better lineup representations of indie rock you’d find.

Lights Resolve’s set was early in the day, but they played like headliners. One of the best alt rock bands in the New York area, this loud three (sometimes four) piece are a refreshing dose of alternative rock that actually rocks. Heavy riffs, thumping basslines, and bashing drums are the cornerstones of nearly every Lights Resolve song. Playing mostly material off their debut album, Feel You’re Different,’ they also made some room for an older track or two and some rather fantastic covers. One of which was ‘Head Like a Hole’ by Nine Inch Nails, which had a unique, semi-stripped down element to it. The original is a very produced rock song, but with only a guitar, bass, and drumkit, Lights Resolve made it their own. It’s always ballsy to take on a song by a band as legendary as Nine Inch Nails, but they definitely had the balls to pull it off. One of the biggest problems is alt rock today is the tepid nature of most bands, but this is most definitely not the case with Lights Resolve. They make an incredible amount of noise considering how few people are on stage. Songs like ‘Stick ’em Up,’ ‘With the Pieces,’ and ‘Lost & Jaded’ show this off incredibly well. If you’re a fan of loud ass rock, then you’ll no doubt fall in love with Lights Resolve.

Headlining the night was Tokyo Police Club, stylistically different than Lights Resolve but an equally impressive live act. Having amassed a pretty impressive crowd by the time they walked out, Tokyo Police Club had the crowd on their side with the first step onto the stage. Dancing along to the upbeat guitar riffs and groovy basslines, it was pretty clear everyone there was very into the performance. Highlight of the set was their hit, ‘Your English is Good,’ which is an equal parts indie rock and rowdy pub tune. Playing a solid hour plus, they no doubt left the hundreds in attendance with nothing but smiles on their faces.


















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The 411: Bringing together a dynamic, but very admirable lineup, Lackawanna Music Festival gave the crowd all they could want out of a free festival. A taste of local young talent with three piece rockers Lights Resolve and the undeniable talent of Tokyo Police Club.
411 Elite Award
Final Score:  9.0   [  Amazing ]  legend

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