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2022/09/25 - Live at Portola Festival San Francisco

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well fuck me... why couldn't they do a photoshop rocky mountains in the same vein as the golden gate


That's an awesome poster. I'm almost tempted to request one of you to hold one for me.


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I’m already doing double time for enjoyed. I’ll try to soften the blow and take your energy tomorrow. Currently using the Shrine 2019 recording to hype my energy levels.

My energy levels at this current time are, well, not in sync compared to the last shindig. I can feel it too. I know age got to me (no shit  :))) and amongst other things, plus I got another COVID booster around a week prior to the show and now I feel like I just came off a treadmill from 60 min of paced running.

Did some practice walking down and up some hills yesterday ( I'm in SF now btw) and yep, it's gonna be awhile before I get back to my normal energy levels back. I'm about maybe 75 percent right now but I'll see if SG and it's healing powers can restore my vitality.

In bed typing this, and I can't sleep because I'm beyond excited about later today. Got here in good time yesterday about 6 hr and 15 min drive. Played the new Beth Orton album, Chems Lowlands, StereoLab, etc while on the road.

Saw this while navigating in the afternoon.






This is up there. Like, Star Guitar up there.


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then there is this.

24" x 18". $55 after taxes. (a little steep for a poster that isn't signed or numbered, but I still wanted it.) they gave me a poster tube for it. someone told me the lockers aren't big enough to hold it, but I cannot confirm.


You need to replace your image link, the one you use doesn't work.
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Hi hi hi! Shakermaker gave a great rundown of the venue. Slick  Goldenvoice production, interesting location, and the crowds. From what I saw the merchandise line toward the back of the venue was bonkers, I did not wait and will try again today. Food lines were long so be prepared.

Those yesterday who were dressed like it was Coachella weekend appeared unprepared in the outerwear department. So folks, do as shakermaker says and bring layers because it gets chilly in a hurry once the sun starts to set!

I’ll be heading in later during the day. So excited!! See you there 😆
Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle.


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You need to replace your image link, the one you use doesn't work.

thanks, I changed to an attachment.


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Good times at Fatboy Slim. Been a long time coming for me to see him live. There was a dude recording his set. Wish I went up to him to ask for the recording. Anyone recording the Chems today?


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then there is this.

24" x 18". $55 after taxes. (a little steep for a poster that isn't signed or numbered, but I still wanted it.) they gave me a poster tube for it. someone told me the lockers aren't big enough to hold it, but I cannot confirm.

That sure is one cool looking poster! Super jealous  :)
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Wow, cool poster!


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There is also this. Had to get it.


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Good times at Fatboy Slim. Been a long time coming for me to see him live. There was a dude recording his set. Wish I went up to him to ask for the recording.

that would have been a great way to mess up his recording.


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For sure, talking after the show was over. Danced my face off from beginning to end. But had noticed he was recording and totally forgot to go to him after the set.


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yeah that'd be the way to do it. (related: there is an Orbital recording form 2010 that prominently features someone saying "is that a microphone?")

FWIW I decided I will head in around 2 today to try and make the most of it. there's some good music and it was not that long ago that we couldn't do this.

run into some of you later, maybe.


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My life changed today!

That is all!
This is up there. Like, Star Guitar up there.


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Amazing show last night! So many unexpected goodies that happened with every song. They really did a wonderful job working through the entire set. Can’t decide if the half before “hold tight SF” was better than the half after. Love how the music pulls me in deeper and deeper. I would have to say that it was the second best show of theirs I’ve seen. First was the first time I saw them in 99. I’m dancing away from this show feeling really fortunate that they are my favorite band.


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Amazing show last night! So many unexpected goodies that happened with every song. They really did a wonderful job working through the entire set. Can’t decide if the half before “hold tight SF” was better than the half after. Love how the music pulls me in deeper and deeper. I would have to say that it was the second best show of theirs I’ve seen. First was the first time I saw them in 99. I’m dancing away from this show feeling really fortunate that they are my favorite band.

Tons of unexpected surprises in this show. I love the new take on Setting Sun, to the new faster paced visuals of EML Ritual. There's just so many other songs in the setlist that in imo got remixed of some sorts. I have to back to my vids to get more details in what I missed.

I also saw the chems in 99 as well, but I think this show is definitely a one of a kind show compared to all the times I've seen them. Glad you had a great time!   :)
This is up there. Like, Star Guitar up there.


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day two was an entirely different experience for me, so glad I went in early to take it in. the quality of music was much MUCH higher on sunday. (pretending the warehouse didn't exist helped.)

the Chemical Brothers were on point. no encore, but that was expected. I at times struggled to figure out if they'd changed the set since the Howard Castle show or I just didn't remember. either way, still still thoroughly fantastic.

it didn't occur to me until they posted on social media afterwards that this was their last live show of the year. no tour dates for 2023 yet right? somehow yesterday feels even more special knowing that.

I'm also buzzing off of hearing other people comment on how amazing their set was. it was very well received.


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San Fran 2022 Portola Festival
Show of Maturity.

****WARNING! Another long narrative review by rynostar. It gets emotional (and slightly dark)****

The 2019 California shows were the bookend of my Chems gigs prior to lockdown. The last being the emotional ecstasy at the Bill Graham in San Fran, my return to the Chems experience was serendipitous to be a return to the Bay Area. I wrestled with the idea of attending the Denver set, but gave into reason that the extra journey was beyond my current means (I bought a condo last year…). In lead up, my thoughts dwelled on this latest pilgrimage as one of renewal. Tom and Ed (and Adam and Marcus and Lyle and Errol) is the main reason we gather together and celebrate. However, spending time with the brother and sisterhood was of most importance to me.

I arrived to SFO as the sun set over the pacific horizon. I was a ball of nervous, excited, and focused energy as i came out of arrivals texting pooter to determine where to go and potentially what to look out for. I already jumped the gun by heading to the AirTran towards the BART when pooter notified me him and Fern were already here and asking which airline I flew (meant I went the long way to go back where I started). Saw Fern first as I walked through Int’l arrivals pickup. A wave of excitement and cautiousness rushed over seeing friends for first time post-pandemic while mindful of not knowing others comfort level. Pooter pulls up the car, we hop in, and drive towards Petaluma. In the car, on arrival to home, and we’ll into the wee hours of the night, the conversations continued almost exactly where we left off in 2019. Life, work, relationships, covid, the Brother and Sisterhood, and most importantly, the Chems.

We started on the same conversational paths next morning as we grabbed groceries, ‘toured’ Petaluma, prepared for the journey, ate lunch in Salsulito, and drove to the festival. As we hunted for parking, all I could do was squirm due to a constant need to pee. I purposely over hydrated and carb/protein loaded knowing energy would be spent over the course of the day. The over hydration resulted in immediately hopping out of the car telling all to ignore me as I relieved myself (finding toilets would be a constant issue through the next 24 hours). Arriving at the festival, we immediately head to the far end crane stage to find shaker in his eye of truth outfit. Pooter finds him after a few tracks of an unknown dj. we exchange hugs and head back to the warehouse in an attempt to connect with Inchem, Whirly, Stash, and see Kelly Lee Owens play. No luck on them, but we find pooters friend Matt on the way as a welcome addition to the party. Kelly Lee Owens set felt more suited for a dark small venue rather then this long warehouse. Her songs were dark, atmospheric, with breathy vocals and bass lines annoyingly shaking the warehouse supports and stage structure. A few times she would change from breathy vocals to regular pump up the festival crowd regular voice clashing with the vibe of her tracks. We decide food is needed for mileage knowing levels will soon rise. My food order and consumption was quicker then the others meaning I had time for (another) bathroom trip and a jaunt to merch. Grab a plain Chems logo hoodie knowing the poster would be a hassle while dancing and not interested in the tie dye shirts (plus, I like that the font is now surrender blue). The rest of the group finished eating and we head to DJ shadow at ship tent. Standing outside, I couldn’t even see him on stage as the video screens were dark for the five minutes from our arrival. He ends a track and finally lights flash on him showing he’s deeper into the stage than I expected. I’m not a huge fan of DJ Shadow as a solo artist (think he’s brilliant in UNKLE collabs with James Lavelle). However, I do pay a huge debt of respect for his live sets and his groundbreaking history. Most tracks were still hip-hop breaks, samples, and a brief interlude into drum and bass. We soon head back to crane stage for Blessed Madonna and attempt to find Shaker. We get there and one of the trio of djs leading up had a Calgary Flames hockey jersey on. The Edmonton Oilers fan yells out “Fuck the Flames” and proceeds to start dancing. Had at least one girl in front of me surprised by this “hate” remark as I immediately proceed to appreciation of said djs work properly (ie dancing).

Blessed Madonna came on. Drops the history of disco track I still love (and still need a proper track id) she played at the Shrine 2019 gig. Continues with the Soulwax remix of Tame Impala’s Let It Happen which Pooter and I synched in voicing and dancing (you were not forgotten Enjoyed). Follows up with an extended dark edit of Kano’s It’s A War. I’m in full solo sing along mode to the later with it being my intro to italodisco in my “youth”. At this stage of life. I embrace solo moments more now when connecting to tracks younger crowds have no/ little concept of. Stepped out (peeing again), came back to dark techno immediately followed by…lil Jon A Milli…well now the frat bro / sorority sista crowd announced who they were by challenging all to twerk offs that lost relevance after 2010. Some dark techno followed and she closed the set returning to heavy string and horn disco which pulled me back. She started into Dan Hartman’s Relight My Fire, I’m back to anthem mode, but quickly disappointed when the track cuts halfway. Guess she’s done…Peggy Gou’s next. But it’s dark and approaching Tom and Ed time. Blessed Madonna, you never disappoint me. I always leave your sets ready to go to the next level.

As we walk back to the main pier stage to attempt to find our missing hood, the next level hits. Conversations are guided in multiple directions, my movement feels smooth, This is why I prepared all day in food, hydration, and stretching. Once outside the Vip exit to find whirly, stash, Connor, and inchem, the toilet rings again. On my return, I find pooter and approach him and realize the folks I just walked around were whirly, stash, and Connor. Out comes my ‘OMG! YOU GUYS!!!’ White girl hugging moment happens with them. As chatting happens, a white hoodie man with a perfect bald shave walks in front, past us two steps, and I clue in reach out to stop this man. “PHIL!” (Inchem). Immediately realize he wasn’t expecting this shock, see the defensiveness in his face turn to immediate joy recognizing it’s us. We catch up as James Blake finishes his jazz-ambient style set and as we wait for pooter to return from merch (no luck for him). As soon as pooter returns and James Blake finishes the set, we position the brother and sisterhood in the general section dead centre about ten feet in front of the sound booth. The excitement is now contagious. As hinted about in previous post, I couldn’t contain Whirlys excitement, and my own was long gone. Conversations of expectations with it being a 1hr30m festival set, comparisons to Denver, and wonderment of new tracks were at rapid speed now. The Chems chill recording on the sound system moved into Timmy Thomas Why Can’t We Live Together as tech crew moved off stage, lasers and lights did last tests, and the smoke started pouring off stage. Last second call outs and hugs to the family.

This is where I pause the narrative. The conscious decision to prepare my energy levels (food, water, numerous pee stops) came into effect. Knowing this pilgrimage was with those I trusted and in a ‘safe’ space, I decided to drop extra energy during the Blessed Madonna set. Some of you knew as I wanted to ensure someone was aware. Throughout the day, I was keeping my eyes open for emergency service locations (behind warehouse) and emergency exits. I saw first responders help a group of security as we watched the Kelly Lee Owens set. They were quick, professional, and clearly assisted the gentleman who I estimated might have and knocked his noggin. Once my system kicked in as we connected pre-set, my body felt like it should be moving somehow, but I needed to stay with the group. My mind started to partition in two. One side started to question my state, how we’d get home if I’m still not of clear mind, is everyone else okay, am I annoying someone around me. My mind kept looping back to the reasonable rational these worries were already been accounted for and that every step on this pilgrimage had a purpose.

The other side of my mind was screaming “Hello Old Friends!” as I blew kisses to Tom and Ed as came to the stage.

CWU face intro was a hearty soup I never realized I needed to hear as a live opener.

BRB as the first true track immediately hit me as it felt worn as a second side closer having seen it repeatedly since 2015.

Go carried the energy, having it front end still seems right.

Drum track (Inchem told me name after) was new to me. The drum lines connect with me along with the deep bass. I need further dive into the track though.

George and Mildred making an early appearance for UTI/Hoops appearance was enjoyed and got hellos from me. I still am used to UTI/robots in the second side.

OOC/DIA was the only “spoiler” for me since the original return to gigs last year. It was the most anticipated track for me.

New “Woo” track (again Inchem id’ed after) was very bass heavy and unnerving with the old ISYT Asian kabuki / new Caucasian actress in make-up as my mind now really split in two as mentioned before.

HBHG, thank god they threw out the furniture!

Setting Sun, they tricked me there. Was not expecting an even darker side.

Eve of Destruction, me belting out “Boku wa shitanan de da namo”.

I think No Geography vocal was thrown in at this point with me and Inchem motioning at each other for each part.

As we hit half time / Hold On San Francisco, I turned to the group and told pooter and fern, I’m in my head right now too much and just gave a quick hug to both to attempt to get some of that energy out. Reflecting on the front side of the set now a day in the future, I realize it’s gotten darker and my emotions reacted in my heightend state.

As EV started Inchem was yelling over to me, “where’s Star Guitar?!”. I’m feeling the build to the hard drop  and I can’t get into the rhythm…BRAIN WHY WONT YOU STOP!!!! Drop hits, I stumble in time, I turn to whirly and stash.

Now I pause again to vouch that Whirly can confirm that for 2019, her and stash stuck to the balcony / seated areas for the ga shows. This was my first show with them as part of the group. Everyone in the sister and brotherhood I’ve talked to who’s experienced a Chems gig with them has described this overwhelming joy. Whirly I had looked over at a few times in the first half and could see her energy.

When I turned to look at them this time, whirly and stash were dancing hard at it. I could feel their combined energy. My mind immediately switched to full side joy mode. The rhythm came back, the flow, all the nervous energy was stopped in its tracks.

GTKO was my return to solo synchronized dance team (w/ ghost enjoyed) in time with every clap, every lyric, every beat. Young tall Asian kid directly behind me yells in my ear “holy shit! You’re in perfect time”. This ain’t my first tom and Ed rodeo son. I was seeing them back when you were still likely in pre-school (no I did not say that to him). No confetti though. That was a surprise.

DYOH/Get on up on it like this, I have a specific dance when this hits. It’s low, it’s chaotic, it’s when my step count skyrockets.  It’s my all out song.

Star Guitar, new lead in trick me again before hitting temptation synths and no swoon lead in. But the original bass drum line brings me back to speed. I love the added circles visuals giving the ‘70s space futurism feel. Me and Inchem turn to each other right before the drop. I scream “we going up!” and just pogo for the stars.

Swoon, the switch to after Star Guitar is nice to see as it condenses parts that repeat at times.

Wide Open, another new darker bass line trickery. Totally different feeling. In 2019, it made me cry. In 2022, it makes me want to take charge. It makes me focus.

Galvanize as second half close felt appropriate. Was happy to see the octave cat end transition smoothly fit.

No encore, but not needed for me. The 1hr30m felt like a perfect fit even as my mind split in different directions. Overall, the dark front side approach and back light side approach literally played with my emotions, but I liked it. The energy of the crowd around us was great outside of a group that kept getting people on their shoulders and the tall Asian orange shirt kid who gave off “influencer” vibes. With no saturate balloons and no confetti during GTKO, it felt like a bare bones interaction experience where you had to pay attention to the stage. We were far enough back that we couldn’t see Tom and Ed consistently, but I was okay with that. Pooter later said that shaker was supposedly a few people to the side of us but we couldn’t see him. Mesamm, wished we would have connected at some point.

After it ended, we all hugged and I once again yelled “thank you old friends”. After a few minute wait, we went towards the vip entrance as Whirly, Stash, and Connor were going to find Errol and see if they could arrange anything. Our group debated new transitions, new tracks, memories. I was coming back to grounded and feeding off everyone’s positive energy. Once we got word that festival rules likely meant it was a no go tonight we started towards vehicles (not surprised it being a goldenvoice event).

Taking a seat in the car after made me realize I had been moving in one form or another for 8+ hours. I wasn’t sore, but could tell my legs were tired. We dropped Matt at his hotel after getting through all the other festival goers heading the same roads. I took the front seat after dropping Matt off as I could tell that I needed to be close to Pooters energy again. We made our way across the Golden Gate Bridge with the fog hanging just over the first major beams of the arches. We listened to Nine Inch Nails, Health, and a Kelly Lee Owens track that was much more appropriate now as we climbed the hills back to Petaluma. When getting home, I was getting back to a vulnerable mindset. Our discussion led through the night to deep contemplation that challenged my psyche (don’t worry, it was all optimistic and positive).

Throughout the next night, I woke up every hour to use the washroom as I hydrated a lot after the set. Waking up in the morning, Pooter and I get into analysis of the show. We get texts from Inchem about his success post leaving us as he stuck around for a bit. The rest of the morning was relaxed as I got ready to catch my plane back to Canada. I have deep heartfelt farewells for now at the airport, went pee (again), and started writing this post. It’s taken me 5 hours to write and reflect on this (waiting, in plane, and now home in bed).

I needed this weekend. I came expecting to have a great time, which I did have. I came out with an unexpected vulnerability that I had to tell myself to “Don’t Think, just let it flow”. I’m calling this the show of maturity for myself as I ended up learning a ton about myself in a short span of time. To the sister and brotherhood, it was worth the wait. Thank you for letting me share in your energy. To Tom and Ed. We may have been too far to see, but I was just happy to see you create another another pilgrimage for us.
That would have blown my mind. If I had a mind.

"We going up!" and then pogo for the stars


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I came out with an unexpected vulnerability that I had to tell myself to “Don’t Think, just let it flow”. I’m calling this the show of maturity for myself as I ended up learning a ton about myself in a short span of time. To the sister and brotherhood, it was worth the wait. Thank you for letting me share in your energy.

Ryno, thank you so much for taking the time to write this writeup. I really appreciate the heavy thought and effort in this review, and just wanna let you know that I value you as a person, a Chem's fan, a friend, and someone who always has the best intentions and interests of others, with a good heart to match. I'm glad you took something with you from this show, whether it be maturity, clarity, or peace, or whatever. What matters is that you will always take some special gift or emotion from this band and take it with you as a constant reminder of joy, fulfillment, and spending your life to the fullest with friends close by. I'm also happy that Pooter took you in and be a source of friendship and brotherhood to you when you arrived.

Your review was detailed and gave me insight and answers in what I was contemplating when I was trying to find you guys when phone reception was down. Another thing too was I was running late , In which I will explain in my review ( still a work in progress) But overall I had a joker smile reading your review as soon as it hit


I’m not a huge fan of DJ Shadow as a solo artist (think he’s brilliant in UNKLE collabs with James Lavelle). However, I do pay a huge debt of respect for his live sets and his groundbreaking history. Most tracks were still hip-hop breaks, samples, and a brief interlude into drum and bass

I just got there to the venue and made it in time at the start of his set. Much different set since I Iast saw him 7 years ago. Alot of his classic tracks got revamped, but change is good especially when trying to reach a younger crowd. ( He's in his 50's I think) I enjoyed Pathetic Age more than Mountain Will Fall, but wish for more Unkle.


Setting Sun, they tricked me there. Was not expecting an even darker side


100 agree! Really impressed by this makeover and much harder this time around. Really stood out from the rest of the classic tracks played that night. The oil/ water/ 60's red dye visual was classic psychedelic, and those siren key drops just made it more impressive.


Star Guitar, new lead in trick me again before hitting temptation synths and no swoon lead in. But the original bass drum line brings me back to speed. I love the added circles visuals giving the ‘70s space futurism feel. Me and Inchem turn to each other right before the drop. I scream “we going up!” and just pogo for the stars.


"we going up! and just pogo for the stars"
QUOTE OF THE YEAR!

I'm happy the SG piano version is still going strong. I couldnt really dance as hard as I used to but I gave it my all.


Now I pause again to vouch that Whirly can confirm that for 2019, her and stash stuck to the balcony / seated areas for the ga shows. This was my first show with them as part of the group

You finally danced with the Chemical Mommy! She was the first one to hug me when I first met her back in the day. I'm happy you got to dance with her in the brotherhoid/sisterhood group!

"all I could do was squirm due to a constant need to pee"


"The over hydration resulted in immediately hopping out of the car telling all to ignore me as I relieved myself"

"My food order and consumption was quicker then the others meaning I had time for (another) bathroom trip"

"Stepped out (peeing again)"

"Once outside the Vip exit to find whirly, stash, Connor, and inchem, the toilet rings again"

"I woke up every hour to use the washroom as I hydrated a lot after the set"


Ryno, I want you to know that my restroom is always available if you ever visit. I think Professor Albus Dumbledore said it best, "Restrooms will always be given at Chemical Brothers concerts to those who deserve it.


« Last Edit: Sep 28, 2022, 13:46 by inchemwetrust »  
This is up there. Like, Star Guitar up there.


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Still processing, and it is back to reality and work tomorrow. I had the most splendid weekend, topped by the most immersive full body experience that was The Chemical Brothers on Sunday night. More to come in the form of a review but want to check in. What an incredible show, and it is a pleasure and an honor to have experienced it with you ❤️
Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle.


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I will have to find some time this weekend to read through your posts about Denver and SF  :)

For the moment, I'll just leave this here (it was posted in the Forum Facebook group:)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iK274fNuEBs


 

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