Umphrey's McGee summer tour is in full rage and recently sandwiched the Lawn at White River in Indianapolis, Indiana in the middle of a Midwest Umph Face Melt tour. Saturday was beautiful, one of those perfect summer evenings that wrap lightly around your memory with just the right amount of haze and coolness calling out for you to come dance on the Lawn and listen to some killer jams. The Lawn at White River is nestled in the heart of the White River State park between the Eiteljorg Museum of American Indian and Western Art, White River Gardens, Victory Field and Military Park creating a very unique vibe for the concert goers. As folks make their way down to the gates they pass those gathering on the lawn across from the White River Wapahani Trail who come to the park to throw Frisbees and lay on blankets while listening to the nights music. The smiles and cheer radiating from the crowd didn't stop at the gates but grew as the Lawn inside the venue began to fill in.
The evening would kick off with opening act Black Joe Lewis who would season the night air for the encore of Umph Face Melt. As the sun began to sink behind the stage Umphrey's opened their performance with one of their specialty progressive improvisation jams, Nipple Trix and without pause into "All In Time." As Brendan Bayliss' vocals seared across the night band band members Ryan Stasik (bass), Jake Cinninger (guitar,vocals), Joel Cummins (keyboards), Kris Myers (drums, vocals) and Andy Farag (percussion) would lead each other into a masterpiece of impovisation, sending the crowd into a frenzy of get down. "2X2"
kept the crowd with massive rage face as Bayliss and Cinninger exchanged leads and Staskik dropping the bottom end of madness and leading into a sweet "End of the Road" back into "2X2." As the sun melted in the horizon the White River Gardens lights began to glow in the mist of the river while the funkyness of "Turn & Dub" lead into Bayliss' vocals once again searing through the night into "Immigrant Song." At one point during the set the band recognized the crowd as being one of the longest and most enduring Umphrey's crowd and continued to give the Lawn a tasty treat of hometownish jams sandwiching "August" with a dose of "Snake Juice" and back into "August." They wrapped up their first set with "Glory."
As Umphrey's took one of the longest set breaks known to man twilight fell across the Lawn and the anticipation for the Umphrey's light show could be felt as an electrical vibe pulsed across the Lawn. Warming up the night with second set opener "Forks" "JaJunk" would feed into "The Fussy Dutchman" and back into "JaJunk." The light show stretched across the Indianapolis skyline and filled it with such a fierceness pelting the buildings with lazers. Cinninger took lead on "Layla"
putting an Umphrey's improvisational feel to it while the crowd swooned along with Bayliss' vocals. "The Triple Wide" into "All In Time"brought the band full circle and into the encore. Hajimemashite softly filled the night air into Partyin' Peeps as they closed the show. Nightlife in Naptown didn't stop there for some of Umphrey's fans who continued on into the night to be partyin peeps of their own.
Nipple Trix > All In Time -> 2x2 > End of the Road > 2x2, Turn & Dub > Immigrant Song, August > Snake Juice > August, Glory
Forks, JaJunk > The Fussy Dutchman, Deeper > JaJunk, Layla, The Triple Wide > All In Time