Now in its fourth year, Festival Supreme — the music and comedy festival brainchild of Tenacious D’s Jack Black and Kyle Gass — once again proved why the fusing of the two worlds is a great concept in theory *and* in practice this past weekend at the Shrine Expo Hall. Like in previous years, the lineup was stacked with some heavy hitters from both worlds, but the 2016 edition sported some true legends amongst its ranks.
“Weird Al” Yankovic / Photo: Debi Del Grande
If anybody knows a thing or two about the shared link between music and comedy, it has to be “Weird Al” Yankovic. His career-spanning set was a clear signifier of just how long he has been a staple of pop culture, a point that was driven home even further by the media displayed on the stage’s screens during his costume changes, giving fans a look at all of the television shows and clips that Yankovic has either appeared on or been mentioned in.
As for his set itself, the classics were all there, from the fat suit-sporting ode to eating that is “Fat” to the raging grunge pastiche of “Smells Like Nirvana” to more recent tunes, like Yankovic’s Robin Thicke parody “Word Crimes.” Though Al may be well past the age requirement for AARP eligibility, he certainly shows no signs of slowing down, with an energetic live show that demonstrates that he has still got it.
Flight of the Conchords / Photo: Debi Del Grande
Though the energy of the night’s headliners Flight of the Conchords wasn’t quite as bombastic, the Festival Supreme crowd was still enthralled by the New Zealand duo’s quirkily idiosyncratic tunes. As they ran through songs that were made popular here in the States during their brief HBO show run, equally as amusing as the music itself was the consistent level of intimate banter that the band members exchanged between — and oftentimes during — songs.
Jenny Slate / Photo: Debi Del Grande
While the festival’s outside stage was largely reserved for louder musical acts, the inside of the Shrine provided a more intimate setting for the straight-up comedy performers. Jenny Slate treated a packed room to some loosely strewn-together stoner musings that elicited just as much hilarious discomfort as straight-forward belly laughs. Will Forte ran through several bits that found him playing the roles of various characters, and his set also received a surprise appearance from Tenacious D themselves, who returned after providing an electro-space-themed set earlier in the day to punctuate one of Forte’s bits with a tortured acoustic ballad about the perils of bombing a spelling bee.
Tenacious D / Photo: Jesse Fulton
At this point, Festival Supreme has become a staple of the annual Los Angeles festival circuit. With such impeccably curated talent, a great venue that can support such a variety of acts and entertainment, and an overall culture that is welcoming and weird at the same time, fans of comedy and/or music would do well to join in the fun when they return next year.
Will Forte / Photo: Jesse Fulton
The Vandals / Photo: Jesse Fulton
Test Pattern (Fred Armisen, Bill Hader, Maya Rudolph) / Photo: Debi Del Grande
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