Viva PHX

Desert Daze Caravan Aims for a Psychedelic Landing at Viva PHX

Phil Pirrone of JJUUJJUU
Angela Holtzen
Phil Pirrone of JJUUJJUU
On March 11 Viva PHX festival lands downtown. This year’s lineup includes five Psychedelic bands from Desert Daze festival. The bands formed a special Desert Daze caravan and are touring all around the west coast on their way to SXSW in Austin.

The caravan includes Temples, Night Beats, Deap Vally, Froth, and JJUUJJUU. Catching touring artists like these on their way to SXSW is more or less how VIVA Phx was born.

The Desert Daze caravan is hitting all the festivals they can possibly play on their way to Austin. This includes Noise Pop (San Francisco), Neon Reverb (Las Vegas), VIVA Phx, Not So Much Fun Weekend (Dallas), and Burger Records Hangover Fest (San Antonio).

In between festivals, the caravan plays normal venues. This is a unique situation since there are five bands to play as opposed to the traditional two, or maybe three at the most. This means people are at a show for a few more hours than they’re used to.

This might actually be pretty conducive for psychedelic music. Longer time at a show means testing people’s mental capacities a little more, and allowing more time to shift into a different space.
Desert Daze and Moon Block Party founder, Phil Pirrone, is along for the caravan because he also plays in the band JJUUJJUU.

With five psychedelic, and somewhat improvisational bands touring together, you might wonder if band members will play with each other during shows.

“Everybody's talking about how they're going to sit in for each other. I think that will probably start to happen near the end of the tour. By the time we get to Phoenix. You guys will probably see that,” Pirrone says.

When improvisational jamming is happening on stage it is all about the moment.

“The vibe is right when you aren’t overthinking it. If you start overthinking it, you’re gonna blow it,” Pirrone says.

As a genre, Psychedelic-Rock music is intended to alter or expand the mind.

“Psych is a loose term in the sense that a lot of different music is psychedelic because it makes you feel things. Your brain is turning on synapses due to the sound and vibrations your hearing and feeling. All good music is essentially psychedelic regardless of what is sounds like. When your switch gets turned off and you go see a great band your switch gets turned on again. That’s what a great fucking band can do, it can heal you!” Pirrone says.

Over the next few years Pirrone would like to create more large-scale festivals and continue with creative festival concepts.

“It’s a weird era. It’s the era of wearing a lot of hats, of DIY on a whole new level. Bands can put out their own records, and tour constantly. Maybe they’re on the fringe or they’re underground, but that’s only gonna last so long. Two generations from now I think people are going to rebel against being on their smartphones all the time, or pushing buttons to make music, and they’re going to want to use something to make music, and to go outside to do something. We’re going to be that rebellion. I think it’s the new paradigm,” Pirrone says.

click to enlarge DESERT DAZE
Desert Daze