San Diego’s two premier rock radio stations square off on Sunday, June 3 with very divergent music festivals.
91X presents X-Fest, summoning '90s nostalgia with Jane’s Addiction, Garbage, P.O.D. and Eve 6. Also on the bill are Angels & Airwaves, Rebelution, Neon Trees, Of Monsters & Men, Grouplove and Walk the Moon. X-Fest will be held at Cricket Wireless Amphitheater.
On the same afternoon, at Oceanside Pier, FM94/9 will host a new festival dubbed the Sandy Parts Festival (SPF 94/9), with Santigold, the Naked & Famous, Imagine Dragons and Electric Guest.
The pull of either gathering depends on one's aims for a Sunday afternoon. Perhaps Jane’s Addiction was the soundtrack to your adolescence, or Garbage, for that matter. Opportunities to see those bands are few and far between. Both are time-tested, with seasoned and talented musicians and their impact on the face of alternative rock is immense.
To be fair, X-Fest isn’t simply looking backwards -- the synth-infused dance pop of Neon Trees and the catchy youthful indie rock of Grouplove will also be present. Of Monsters & Men will deliver rich vocals and joyous chamber pop, or if Rebelution’s smooth Southern California reggae sound is the ideal wave to wash over a summer afternoon, X-Fest is calling your name.
FM94/9’s Sandy Parts uses tomorrow as its vantage point, distinctly focusing on the electronic side of indie rock. New Zealand’s the Naked & Famous are fueled with synth-driven, anthemic melodies, and Santigold’s hip-hop electro-pop diva dance music is known to be searing live.
But the real surprise at Sandy Pants may be Electric Guest. Lead singer Asa Taccone has a classic soul voice with a confident range, and the band plays futuristic, pocket R&B. The music has a playful innocence as well as a seasoned seriousness.
Either way, it’s good to live in a town with options and a coin toss or simple proximity will most likely deliver you to good music.