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Firefly Music Festival Review Day 2 Friday; Tanlines or Dustlines? Foo Fighters, Arctic Monkeys
  by: iradioal - Philadelphia, PA
started: 06/21/14 8:09 am | updated: 06/21/14 8:09 am
The Firefly Music Festival has made it's return to The Woodlands at Dover Downs in Dover, DE for 2014 and it's bigger and better than ever. This is the 3rd consecutive year for the premier festival in the growing American festival circuit and neither the lineup, amenities, nor attractions are lacking. Headliners for the weekend include the big name acts Foo Fighters, Outkast, and Jack Johnson with the rest of the acts include some of the top billing alternative/indie bands around. Breakthrough and local acts also get the chance to take the stage on one of many showcase venues. This year Firefly expanded to a "4th" day with a smaller evening lineup warming up the festival on Thursday night to all the campers who packed in early.

PHOTO GALLERY: Firefly Day 2 Friday Photos
SEE ALSO: Firefly Music Festival Review Day 3 Saturday; Outkast, Beck, Cage the Elephant, Third Eye Blind
SEE ALSO: Firefly Music Festival Review Day 4 Sunday; Jack Johnson, Weezer, The Lumineers

Friday at Firefly was the first full day of activity with a full schedule of bands that it's impossible to see everything. I started off at the Main Stage checking out KONGOS. The 4-piece band from Phoenix, AZ by way of South Africa are making waves with their hit single “Come with Me Now,” but the four Kongos brothers have been playing together for years. They put on a solid, rocking set that had the early crowd going. I quickly moved off to the Coffee House to support Philadelphia band Cruiser. These guys played at our Haverford Spring Fest back in May, so it's nice to see them again getting some well deserved exposure. The Coffee House is a great place to see a set. It's under a tent (no sun) and you can get right up on the stage. Later in the day a few bigger artists do a reprise performance here.

Ghost Beach took the Backyard stage in the early afternoon and the first thing vocalist Josh Ocean said was “I'm ready to dance”. The electronic duo from New York launched into their set and the subwoofers at the front of the stage started jumping. The crowd showed that it's never too early to dance as they pulsed with the beat. Over on the Lawn stage, New Politics drew a large early crowd. The high energy punk/alternative band from Denmark were all over the stage, especially front man David Boyd who took to break dancing and even jumping into the crowd during the song “Fall Into These Arms”. Unfortunately, Sky Ferreira had to cancel her set today for unknown reasons.

If you get a chance walking between sets, explore and check some of the hidden nooks throughout the site. There are several “hammock hangouts” in the trees that you can take a load off and relax if you are lucky enough to find an empty one. I swear some people fell asleep in there for hours. The arcade has every game you can imagine, pinball machines, skee-ball, air hockey, basketball, etc. Hint: it's also air conditioned. In the evening you can take a ride on the hot air balloon to get a bird's eye view of the grounds. Finally, if you're passing by the Big Break or Coffee House stages, stop on in and see who's playing. I guarantee you they are going to be good. Many of them are also local, so if you like them, you'll be able to see them again soon.

The Firefly complex is laid out so that stages are basically clumped at one end or the other end separated by a lot of walking. If you plan your day right, you may not have to go far between sets, but sometimes you just end up having to make the trek. Friday evening's lineup just happened to have some great acts alternating between opposite ended stages. Starting at the Backyard, Portugal. The Man from Wasilla, AK made a return to Firefly and did not disappoint. Over to the Main Stage, the crowd was seething with anticipation for Arctic Monkeys. The UK lads came out with a lot of swagger and didn't let up during their performance. The set was a mix of tracks off of AM as well as older material. They could easily have headlined any one of the nights here this weekend. Back over on the Backyard another alternative festival mainstay, Young the Giant, was back for the second time at Firefly playing back in 2012. The California band rocked the stage pulling from their new release Mind Over Matter as well as their self-titled debut Young the Giant. Band of Horses played an excellent set on the Lawn stage even pulling out 2007's “Is There a Ghost.”

The headliner for Friday night is the one and only Foo Fighters. As lead singer Dave Grohl noted at the start of the set, they've been a band for nearly 20 years and have toured the world. There are very few rock bands bigger or more successful than these guys have been over their career. The show was big, it was loud, and it was so full of hits that you felt like you went a round with Ali. They went all the way back to the first song on their eponymous album Foo Fighters “This Is a Call”. “Big Me,” “Monkey Wrench,” “The Pretender,” “I'll Stick Around,” “Rope,” and “Times Like These” were all highlights. For the encore, they played Alice Cooper's “School's Out For Summer” on this eve of the first day of summer.

Well Saturday has more bands, more sun, more dust, and a lot more music!

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