In hindsight, it’s easy to blame Salt Lake City Arts Council for misjudging the popularity of Modest Mouse/Avi Buffalo while also underestimating the number of attendees. But for this week’s show—Twilight Concert Series at Pioneer Park, Take Two—organizers retooled Pioneer Park, preparing to make last night’s Girl Talk concert a more enjoyable experience.
Even with attendance numbers way down from last week’s show, organizers made the necessary improvements and modifications. More bathrooms: check. More security/police presence: check. More water stations: check.
These improvements to the venue, combined with the smaller crowd size, made for a much improved experience. Concert-goers last night were rewarded with an event that closely resembled the Gallivan Center shows of 2006 and 2007, with a great atmosphere that provided spaces for those individuals who wanted to hang out, beyond the main crowd, as well as those individuals who felt the need to mash themselves into a giant mass that took over the grass in front of the stage.
Pioneer Park, Take Two, was conducive to the electrified crowd that showed up ready to party and expecting a performance. The changes made were effective. Temperatures, while high at first, soon cooled off and turned the park into a fashion show of the latest and greatest hipster fashions. And, when the one-man band known as Girl Talk showed up, he totally killed it.
Girl Talk may not be as widely known as Modest Mouse, which accounts somewhat for the crowd that was half the 40,000 that came out last week, the laptop pushin’ and toilet paper throwing mashup king came into Pioneer Park last night and did what he’s been known to do around the world: MC an awesome party while putting together track combinations that most DJs would never consider. Although he never played a actual instrument, Gregg Gillis (aka Girl Talk) dominated those laptops, immediately sucking last nights crowd into his performance. The crowd went wild every time Gillis pumped his fist, threw some toilet paper, or simply stood up and bounced to the beat.
Those of us who attended last night were treated to a performance that rivaled all those crazy Girl Talk YouTube videos. Gillis had a slew of people dancing on his stage while the majority of the crowd bounced. Gillis fed off the vibes projected from the crowd and emitted from all over the park. Immediately Gillis worked his crowd into a frenzy combining his beats with hand-picked tracks, which blend Top 40, rap and alternative songs into lengthy anthems from his seemingly endless supply of hits and singles.
Last night Gillis did what he does best, and quickly had at least some of the crowd thinking, ‘Modest who?’ Gillis blended track after track, mixing songs of any/every type while controlling their speed pace and sound and controlling the crowd directly in front of the stage.
How eclectic is Gillis? His set’s last night included Michael Jackson, Korn, Simon & Garfunkle, Kelly Clarkson, Snoop Dogg, Lil Wayne, Lady Gaga, Van Halen, Soldia Boy, and even Phill Collins.
Last night's show was diverse, to say the least, as Gillis bounced from genre to genre as fast as he could. The ability of Girl Talk to mix and mash someone else’s music into his own sound and then drop it like it was meant to be dropped made for a great night and gave this years Twilight Concert Series a much needed boost of morale, as well as success to build upon.