Alpine 2019 was pure magic.
The crew went above and beyond for this one. 25+ people at an incredible farmhouse set up about 30 min from the venue. Following an extensive cheese palace run and plenty of Glarus purchased, we all convened onto a multi-house, multi-acre property filled with old forever-friends, new forever-friends (HI DUSTIN! HI PETE!), Memo’s better half (the one and only Noid!), and the blossoming of a burgeoning inter-crew love affair that continues on to this day (more on this in a bit…).
With this background as a setting, the typical stress-free Saturday of the three-night one was picture perfect. Awaking from our slumbers, the memories of the previous night were fresh in our minds. One of our friends brought out Codenames and we played extensively the night before, capped off with a one and only Memo English language snafu, this time loudly proclaiming that he didn’t know what the word “BUNGLE” meant. The morning was H.O.T and the iced coffee washed down our quaint little commune’s go-to eggs and bacon quite well. The rest of the day was spent listening to tunes, drinking tasty beers, playing pool, and lounging with views of vast farmlands. We were a million miles away from any stressors both near, far, and what would be in the coming year.
My favorite activity of the day happened after we found an old wooden bat and baseball. We proceeded to play baseball as the late 1800’s intended… shoeless, gloveless, and free-swinging. Our buddy “Kernel” almost took my head off with a line drive and the whole crew had plenty of moon shots. We shagged balls while the new love doves continued shagging in their shag layer. It was truly a slice of heaven on Earth.
As show time started to encroach, we all started the celebrations early given it was a 100th show for one of our very own, Sam. I had the ABSOLUTE PLEASURE to accompany Sam in the pavs. The way the tickets worked out that night was that it was just me and her and I couldn’t be happier to be able to be with one of my favs for her well-deserved milestone.
The party bus was rocking that night and, as we all dispersed into Alpine following that majestic walk up the hill, Sam and I went on our way to claim our seats. The views were perfect- dead center- and the neighbors were kind. We knew no matter what this night would be fucking awesome and memorable.
The musical highlight of the night was “Runaway Jim”. An extended Jim Jam that went a hundred different places but never quite settled on any of the new territories charted by the band. If they just could have patiently explored each 30-45 second interval of primordial soundscape they would have easily stretched this to 30+ minutes…. which is exactly what happened the next night.
The Jam opened up around 3:30 with a fanciful entry by Trey, lightly dancing around the guitar in that care-free mode only captured by outdoor, perfect weather summer shows. Coupled with some delicate interplay with Leo on the grand, you can tell they love each other and know that listening is the baseline to any successful relationship. At 4:30ish, Trey heads to the Pink Lloyd delay pedal to introduce us to some alien noises. Ancient astronaut theorists surmise that Trey dreamed this up following his subconscious trip to the Easter Island heads. The weirrrrrdness continues and we get watery grave trey pedal and some monster page synth boy noize.
Starting at 7:30ish, the band comes together out of the depths to create something lifting, soaring, and completely unique. Continuing into 9:00ish is an incredible landscape of complete comfort, mirroring the amazing summer farm vibes spent with the crew all day. I could be wrapped to bed in this every night.
We are about to GET GOING at 9:45ish with Trey laying down the lick for some glorious peaking you can see coming from miles away…. except he abandons ship and heads into undermind wayyyy too early.
AND IT WAS ALRIGHT though… Sam got her 100 and I had the pleasure of spending it with her. The band laid the foundation as the ho-hum night of music led to the COMPLETELY UNEXPECTED BIG ONE on Sunday. The band was preparing itself, and we had absolutely no fucking idea what was about to be in store as we were having the time of our lives in the afterglow of a Saturday night special playing a million games of codenames while the lovebirds went back to shagging… And they lived happily ever after (in Detroit!) THE END.