By Jason Portras
On Saturday evening, the Axis Mundi music scene moved up the mountain to Revelation Lodge at the RMR.
The stage was set up just below the black diamond run Cannonball. Unfortunately, the weather wasn’t too cooperative and offered up a very wet and muddy playground for the festival participants. However, as Axis Mundi Publicity Manager Scott Crocker noted, “Spirits were high despite the rain. If anything, the rain brought everyone together.” A truer statement couldn’t have been made.
The Highs came all the way across the country from their hometown of Toronto to take the stage. They quickly warmed the audience up with their catchy beats and rolling melodies. Baskery, a trio of sisters from Sweden, followed up with a rocking collection of funky tunes full of attitude. Sunniva struck me as a lot like Carrie Underwood without the twang and with a generous helping of oomph, for lack of a better word. She’s a show woman that the audience couldn’t keep their eyes off of, jumping around, writhing with her guitar, even seemingly moaning in ecstasy at times. Of course, her sisters Greta and Stella are amazing musicians as well, the spotlight never seemed to want to leave Sunniva for long. Their rendition of Neil Young’s ‘Old Man’ was a huge hit with the crowd, as well as their very own ‘Catflap’ (“a door that swings both ways” as expounded upon by Sunniva when introducing it).
Walk Off The Earth pounded onto the stage next with their heavy bass sound, palpating into the mud, shaking the fence that separated them from their audience. They started the show off with ‘Little Boxes,’ an oddly comforting song, like something from childhood like a lullaby, but one that you couldn’t help but tap your feet to and just smile. Hit songs like ‘Sing It All Away’, ’Summer Vibe’ and ‘Rule The World’ did not disappoint and the audience joined in to everyone of them like greeting old friends with one massive dance. I’m sure it’s going to take a few days for some of the younger members of the audience to get their voices back after this one, especially the ones who were invited onto the stage. Those Revelstokians who came to see this very talented band will remember that moment for some time to come.
After a very long set, and an encore to boot (I’m sure the audience wouldn’t have let them leave if it was their choice), next up was Adham Shaikh and his blend of techno-type tribal groove dance jazz, or at least that’s what I’d call it if I had to describe it. I saw a few members in the audience with their faces covered with mud, one young man with his shirt off in the cold brisk mountain rain, covered in mud. Yet, I’ll bet he wasn’t cold, dancing like a shaman driven by the vibe that burned the air with its pounding rhythm, surrounded by people dancing just as hard and free. After trudging through the mud and being bathed in the fresh rain, as a not-so-young adult any more, it was good to remember the night over a hot chocolate from Timmy’s with my wife while the younger crowd partied on.
By Jason Portras