The Labour Day long weekend saw some of the world’s most well-known musicians taking Fort Calgary’s X-Fest 2014 stage. Saturday’s lineup featured the likes of Stars, The Smalls, Death Cab for Cutie and Jack White. Sunday brought about July Talk, Tegan and Sara, Cage the Elephant, Foster the People and a plethora of others.

Some standout moments of the weekend was the reunion of The Smalls after a 13-year absence, as well as what will be one of the last performances for Death Cab for Cutie guitarist, Christopher Walla, who has decided to leave the band after the current tour. July Talk — whose guitarist Ian Docherty celebrated a birthday on Sunday — saw a couple get engaged on stage during their set.

Amidst the hellos, goodbyes and impending nuptials, Calgarians came out to party. The dance floor created by Fitz and the Tantrums saw wave-after-wave of concertgoers lifted and surfed toward the stage. At one point Cage the Elephant vocalist, Matt Shultz, walked completely upright above the crowd.

Calgary-based bands The Wisers and A Day as Wolves kicked off both days just as the gates opened; meaning, from start to finish, attendees got their fill of great music on a sunny weekend.

All in all, it’s a good thing Calgary had Monday off. A lot of us could have used a nap. 

Story and Photos by Justin Wilson


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After performing with Death Cab For Cutie for more than 17 years, guitarist Christopher Walla announced he would be leaving the band at the conclusion of the present tour. X-Fest 2014 attendees are some of the last fans who will see Walla perform with Death Cab.

Photo by Justin Wilson