Story and photos by Matt SchwenkeWrapping up the eleventh and final day of Summerfest in Milwaukee, Poi Dog Pondering, a twelve-member-strong mix of funk, rock and soul out of Chicago, were an appeasing send-off for those who waited out the freak storms that rolled through the grounds earlier in the evening.
Unveiling some long-awaited new material, the song "Butterflys" was a good step forward with warm buzzes of electronics and Susan Voelz's intimate violin playing washing into a driving beat-- over which front-man Frank Orrall's lyrical talent deservedly lead the way throughout. "Super Turana," another new tune, featured a much more rocking Poi Dog Pondering and Orrall's sensual and often overtly sexual lyrics.While new material dotted the setlist with satisfied applause, a run of the classics "Big Constellation," "Shu Zulu Za," "Diamonds and Buttermilk" and "Complicated" -- all off of the band's arguably best release Pomegranate-- received the most reaction from the crowd. Dipping into the techno funk of "Natural Thing," bright and flashy horns led into the upbeat "Hardest Thing" before ending the set with the fan-favorite "Jackass Ginger."
Inducing an encore, a small, but supportive, crowd remained amongst the quickly dwindling Summerfest crowds for a version of "God's Gallipoli," which left compelling lyrics and pulsing strings stuck in the heads of the crowd as they shuffled out to the parking lots and Summerfest's end.
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