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Photo Recap: Runnymede Project Benefit [8.20.11]

Last weekend, a show with a spectacular lineup popped up in Kittery, having been moved from a venue in NH. Looks like the story is repeating itself, as this Friday, the Daytrotter Barnstormers 5 show (with Deer Tick, We Are Augustines, and more) has also been moved from NH to the venue pictured in this post.

Words and photos by Matt Dodge.

Originally planned for a farm in New Hampshire, the Runnymede Project Benefit Show crossed the border into Maine when compliance issues with the town forced organizers to find a new site for the event.

Just like that an unsuspecting dance hall in Kittery became the the site for an immediate contender for Maine indie concert of the summer featuring Ducktails, Mountain Man, Alex Bleeker & The Freaks, Brown Bird and MMOSS. With Real Estate guitarist Matt Mondanile and bassist Alex Bleeker already in attendance, it came as little surprise to those pulling up to The Dance Hall in Kittery to see Real Estate listed as the show’s headliner complete with guitarist/vocalist Martin Courtney.

Alex Bleeker & The Freaks kicked things off for an early 6 p.m. start, running through a couple twangy jams before abruptly handing off the set to Brooklyn freak-rockers Flower Orgy, whose swirling “pagan opus” ‘Black Wizard’ was produced by Bleeker. Ecstatic lead guitar/singer Nate Luce ripped away at the guitar, joined briefly by Bleeker before handing it back over to the Freaks to finish off with their tribute to the night’s darlings with their cover of Mountain Man’s ‘Animal Track’.

Vermont’s female vocal/acoustic guitar trio Mountain Man delivered a charming set, drawing the crowd to the stage and losing the microphones the first song to create an intimate choral feel, running through some of the highlights of their amazing debut album Made The Harbor before closing the set by leading the crowd in a three-part round.

Ducktails took the stage with a distinctly different sound than the sample-heavy show he threw down in Portland last time around, sticking to a single guitar and deliver a humble set before queuing up a backing track to play Ducktails III: Arcade Dynamics standout “Killin The Vibe”.

Bleeker and Courtney join the Duck on stage for a short Real Estate set including new tunes “Out of Tune” and “It’s Real” before a very punctual police force arrived to enforce the town’s 11 p.m. curfew. Brooklyn this is not.