My friends and I were rightfully excited to discover this little Downtown Long Beach show, “Shugazi,” featuring great music and scenery atop the Mariott Hotel parking lot. Shugazi was Summer and Music‘s (SAM) inaugural event of this sort, however, SAM is quite familiar with creating music events for the Long Beach Community as their annual event, Buskerfest, attracts many local bands and concert-goers in the area.
We arrived slightly buzzed on rosé, ready to kick-off the Friday night that would begin our girls-only adventure of a weekend. Philadelphia based shoegaze-y alternative rock group Nothing opened the show with ’90’s inspired noisy garage rock sounds while members of Diiv were spotted grabbing tacos from a local vendor. With a little liquid courage, we took the opportunity to say “hi” before Zachary Cole and Devin had to get backstage.
The real magic happened when Diiv took the stage. I’ve seen hem play about 3 times this year, and they seem to keep getting better and better. They played mostly tracks from Is The Is Are, opening with the album title track. They brought a great live energy to the stage, as they swayed and shoegazed about, with the perfect Downtown Long Beach backdrop to support the stage lights. One bummer though was a refusal of our request to play “Valentine,” a song they apparently had not yet learned to perform live. The performance ended relatively early, even with the encore. And with that, the soundtrack to our weekend was found, as we blasted Diiv in the car during our getaway to Morro Bay.