by Nad Ilovir
Sunday was supposed to be a cloudy day, potentially killing my bicycle trek to the Todd P show (featuring 30+ acoustic bands) at Fort Tilden in Queens. By the afternoon, the sun broke through the clouds and the beach blast was on.
We packed a lunch—thanks Magic Bullet—and biked down Bedford Avenue, then Flatbush Avenue to the bridge that took us to Fort Tilden. After a 15-minute walk through a clean, empty beach, we hit a crowd of about 100 people sitting on blankets with a few playing in the water or sand.
We saw people playing but couldn’t hear a note- not surprising considering waves, people and flat sand for sound to travel along- but we found a spot close to the “stage,” that is, the spot in front of the dunes.
The crowd was quiet and surprisingly respectful of the bands. Except for a few. A topless, loud girl fashioned a cross out of driftwood and “crucified herself.” Few people bothered to turn around and pay her attention. (“I wish someone would uncrucify her,” my blanket neighbor said.)
Many of the bands sounded a lot like watered-down Animal Collective. None stuck in my head except for Shripal Ray and Her Happy Hookers. The band destroyed the acoustic guitar-xylophone-and-bucket paradigm. The aforementioned Hookers consisted of guitars, a drummer (not on a full set), an upright bassist, and a xylophonist (but this one was better). Shripnal Ray played a harmonium and had a voice people by the ocean could hear.
After that band, we were satisfied and left.