Soundcheck: All Tomorrow’s Parties


Kutshers Country Club


One of the perks of being a music journalist (aside from accumulating my body weight in CD promos on a weekly basis) is traveling to music festivals at various points around the globe. While live music is, at least for me, almost always a good thing, the sad truth is that once you’ve been to anywhere from three to three hundred festivals in your lifetime, they all start to look/feel/sound kind of the same. In any given year it’s a pretty safe bet that the same handful of bands will be making the festival rounds, so whether you’re going to Coachella or Glastonbury, you’re likely to see the same dudes (and the Yeah Yeah Yeahs) play basically the same exact set.

This is what makes All Tomorrow’s Parties so special. The ATP festivals, which take place all over the world, generally always involve a guest curator, a special location, and an assortment of bands and performers interested in doing something extra special.  This year’s version of ATP New York–which takes place at the charmingly run down Kutshers Country Club in Monticello, NY–is guest curated by my fellow Oklahomans The Flaming Lips. When I asked the Lips’ Wayne Coyne what kind of special treats the band had in mind for ATP, he suggested that they would like to invite Muhammad Ali to come to the festival, then allow festival goers a chance to punch him. (“Not a hard punch or anything, more like a tap on the shoulder or something.”) Everyone could leave the festival having not only seen The Flaming Lips (and Animal Collective, Deerhunter, Boss Hog, and a bunch of other great bands), but also with a story about punching one of the world’s most iconic athletes.

Sadly, I don’t see any mention of Muhammed Ali on the ATP website, but there’s still a lot to see and do. Having gone to this festival last year, I can honestly say that it’s well worth the trip. Being at Kutschers Country Club is a bit like being in Dirty Dancing, except you have really loud art-rock for a soundtrack and your dance-instructing love object is probably some dude with a beard who plays bass in Dead Meadow.


There will also be a screening of the new ATP Documentary, which just happens to be written up in the current issue of this very magazine. Trailer below:


All Tomorrow’s Parties New York will take place September 11-September 13 at Kutshers Country Club in Monticello, NY. Tickets available here.