These days, it seems that festivals are popping up all over the place. This is probably in no small part due to the success of Bonnaroo, but hey, we’re not complaining. Some of these festivals are actually pretty spectacular, and if our suspicions are correct, Fly Free Fest might just be one of the best new festivals of the year. For those who haven’t heard yet, Fly Free Fest, which will be held at the Red River Canoe Campground up in Adams, TN, starts tonight and runs through Sunday (Oct. 11 – Oct. 13). Tickets are still available for all ages; you can pick up single day passes for only $45 or a $125 for the weekend, and students get a pretty sweet discount. After the jump, check out our full preview of the lineup!
The Kingston Springs
@ Cumulus Stage | 5:30 pm
As you probably guessed based on the amount of coverage we give them, we here at No Country think The Kingston Springs are one of the best rising bands in Nashville today. We even decided to include them as an honorable mention on our list of best records of 2012. This coverage, while quite voluminous, is definitely not unwarranted; these guys simply rock. They’ll be the very first band to play in Fly Free Fest, and literally nothing else is going on during their show, so there’s absolutely no good reason not to get out there and check them out.
Copper Into Steel
@ Stratus Stage | 6:45 pm
To be honest, we didn’t know about Copper Into Steel until we started checking out this lineup, but their infectious upbeat style and John Butler style vocals quickly hooked us. Despite only knowing of their existence for a whopping five days, Copper Into Steel could very well be one of our most anticipated shows. Instead of trying to use a written description of the band’s sound, which is crisp and refreshing incidentally, just go ahead and check out some of the songs in the following playlist.
@ Cumulus Stage | 8 pm
Moon Taxi, who just recently headlined their fifth consecutive Live on the Green, have been enjoying a health measure of success recently due mostly to the release of their newest album, Mountains Beaches Cities. The record does a really great job of encapsulating the soaring hooks and raw energy present in the band’s live show, but their are certain aspects of a live show that just cannot be reproduced in an album. That means that the only way to get the true Moon Taxi experience would be to head on over to the Cumulus Stage around 8 to see this killer band do what they do.
@ Cumulus Stage | 11 pm
If you’ve existed in the United States in the last five years, chances are you’ve at least heard “Ghostwriter” by British electronic artist RJD2. Rather than using computers and newfangled DAW software, RJD2 opts for traditional, analog methods, often times pulling samples from obscure records from the earlier half of the 1900’s. Plus, RJD2 likes to collaborate with intelligent rappers such as Copywrite, resulting in a blend of music spanning several decades that is somehow simultaneously upbeat, nostalgic, and so totally out there.
The Black Cadillacs
@ Cumulus Stage | 2 pm
Do you like your music raw, unpolished, and good? You’ll probably like The Black Cadillacs then. Hailing from Knoxville, TN, The Black Cadillacs have that bluesy, southern aesthetic that’s so popular today, which might just explain the recent surge in popularity they’ve experienced. Their music conjures images of drinking whiskey alone on the porch one warm evening, lost deep in the chasm of self reflection.
@ Stratus Stage | 5:30 pm
Brave Baby firmly inhabits the same musical territory as Arcade Fire and Kings of Leon, but don’t for a second think that Brave Baby haven’t managed to carve out their own unique niche. The Charleston five piece will definitely appeal to the indie rocker in you, and there’s really no good reason not to let that side out every now and again (though we recommend at 5:30 in front of the Stratus Stage).
JEFF the Brotherhood
@ Cumulus Stage | 6:30 pm
JEFF the Brotherhood seem like they play literally every festival in the area, but it’s not just cause they love playing out; there’s a huge demand for these guys. It’s probably because of the fuzz. JEFF the Brotherhood mix heavy distortion with incredible vocal hooks and some pretty tight drumming. Their lo-fi garage tones invariably get people’s feet moving, so it would be safe to say that this show might be one of the most energetic of Fly Free Fest.
@ Cumulus Stage| 11:15 pm
It seems like everything that’s written about Rubblebucket just goes on and on about how awesome their live show, so we’re going to spare you from that…just kidding! Between the on stage dancers, awesome horn section, and unprecedented levels of audience awareness, Rubblebucket has decidedly become a live band. That’s great for you, since you can go see them at 11:15 at the Cumulus Stage. In the meantime, check out this trippy video for their track “Came Out of a Lady”.
@ Nimbus Stage | 12:45 am
Alright, alright. If you’ve had enough of that indie rock nonsense that we’ve been discussing so far, the grimy bass lines and straight up crazy drops of The Floozies are exactly the sort of booty shaking music that Fly Free Fest needs. The Floozies music is choppy, sporadic, and just straight up cool. There’s few people doing what these two brothers, and exactly zero people doing it as well as they do. There’s not a real video for the following song, but it’s such a great song that we put it up anyways.
@ Cumulus Stage | 3:45 pm
Imagine waking up in the brilliant Southern sunlight, sipping a familiar cup of Joe on your front stoop, and simply enjoying the morning that’s happening all around. What would your soundtrack be in that moment? If you’re smart, you picked The Ragbirds. These folky musicians take a more upbeat, positive approach to folk, which has really allowed them to develop a sound that most fans haven’t been exposed to yet.
@ Stratus Stage | 7 pm
Soul Mechanic is one of those bands were the name says it all. The group’s core is a soulful and funky, but they approach their music with the intensely heady calculations of inherent to jazz and progressive metal. Whatever genre these guys get classified in, one thing is clear: they know how to jam. Their band page declares that the group was founded to “conquer the festival scene”, and one listen to their music makes it pretty evident they know exactly how to do that.
@ Cumulus Stage | 8 pm
Polish Ambassador bills himself as “The World’s Funkiest Diplomat”, and he’s probably right. His tunes definitely live up to the title, but where Polish Ambassador really shines is his live show. With tons of different dates under his belt, Polish Ambassador knows exactly how to manipulate a crowd into have a great, if sweaty, time.
@ Cumulus Stage | 10:15
Papadosio will be the last band to finish up their set at Fly Free Fest, but you know the old adage: “Always save the best for last.” These guys play an incredibly psychedelic mixture of funk, jazz, and jam music; suffice it to say that they know how to throw down when the time comes. Perhaps the most impressive aspect of their music is the sheer level of communication between the members. Be expecting songs in seven, time and key signature changes galore, and tons of crazy solos.