The first round of artists includes the great Run the Jewels duo of El-P and Killer Mike, Built to Spill, and Mr. Gnome, plus the up-and-coming Saintseneca (who are going to have a huge 2014, mark my words), the Joy Formidable (who never did too much for me but who I kept hearing were a definite highlight of Musicfest), Seattle's Iska Dhaaf (members of Mt. St. Helens Vietnam Band and Mad Rad) and Denver's lovely Paper Bird. Plus a clutch of great Portland bands, like Modern Kin, Vikesh Kapoor, Hustle and Drone, Psychic Rites, and Summer Cannibals.
Click the jump to take a look at the existing lineup—and remember, lots more is to come—and check out the announcement video. Lots more info, including tickets, over at Treefort's site.
The performers include Grouper, Peter Broderick, Gabriel Saloman, Rauelsson, and Apartment Fox, and the two nights of music will conclude on Saturday night with a "spooky" afterparty DJ'ed by Liz Harris (Grouper). There's also a communal meal on Saturday and complimentary Ninkasi beer and Heart Coffee Roasters coffee all weekend. (Say wha?!?)
The celebration marks the launch of Beacon Sound's new record label, and shopkeep/impresario Andrew Neerman has a Kickstarter page set up to raise funds for Beacon Sound's first vinyl release, a 12-inch with music by Peter Broderick and Gabriel Saloman recorded at Type Foundry, on clear vinyl in a limited edition of 200. Check out the whole Kickstarter campaign here. Meanwhile, the Sou'wester weekend is $40 on top of accommodations, and reservations can be booked here.
Empire of the Sun is the new project from the Sleepy Jackson's Luke Steele, and if this over-the-top album cover gave you trouble, Empire of the Sun is going to give you plenty more. The music's nothing special—electronic-tinged danceable lite-rock—but the stage show is an absolute spectacle, with dancers, costumes, and general weirdness abounding. Here's some footage shot at Bonnaroo this year:
And this, too: This week they slashed ticket prices in half. I doubt that says anything good about the health of the festival, but the result is a pretty sweet deal. A one day pass is $35.99 and three days are $89.95. There are also VIP passes available. Kaleidoscope's site has the full lineup and all the info. If you haven't had enough of outdoor summer music festivals, you know where to turn.
Your weekend just got PLANNED, man. The Helsing Junction Sleepover takes place this weekend (August 16-18) just a short drive away in Rochester, Washington. (That's just north of Centralia and south of Olympia—about an hour and 45 minute drive from Portland.) What's the Helsing Junction Sleepover? It's K Records' super cool summer fest, with music from LAKE, Brainstorm, Karl Blau, Arrington de Dionyso's Malaikat Dan Singa, the Shivas, Tender Forever, Jeffrey Jerusalem, and lots more. Plus it also includes the Northwest Literary Showcase, with Kevin Sampsell, Michael Heald, Ariel Birks, and lots of other writers too. Best of all, it's all held on the Helsing Junction organic farm, with places for picnicking, swimming, and lots of summertime activities. Check out more details of the event over on K Records' page.
We're giving away a pair of passes ($50 value each) to the weekend to one lucky End Hits reader! Send an email to contest at portlandmercury dot com with "Helsing Junction Sleepover" in the subject line. Please include your first and last name in the email. We'll select a winner at random and send them up to the farm for an unforgettable weekend. More details on the fest here, directions here, and ticket info here. Good luck! This contest closes tomorrow morning at 9 am, so don't dilly dally!
Looking at the schedule, the big acts naturally come at night, like Flosstradamus and A-Trak on Friday, Tycho and Yacht on Saturday—that's a great lineup—and Purity Ring and RJD2 on Sunday. The afternoon programming seems relatively light, although I'm sure there's lots to do out in the sunshine, on a farm well outside of the city. (There's a splash pool which should keep people cooled off.) Music festivals of late have trended towards showcasing these kind of electronic and dance acts—it's a healthy sign that we have, in the form of WTF, what is looking to be a growing one so close to Portland.
Speaking of EDM/electronic music, Spin has an interesting piece on the growth of the genre and its tandem ride with visuals and production values, to turn music made by (often) one person on a laptop into a spectacle suitable for huge crowds. They're looking at what's happening in high-end clubs in Vegas, but it's indicative of how the genre has exploded in popularity and what might come next. Check it out.
But yeah, WTF. This one's gonna be big, I think. Sandwiched between PDX Pop Now! and Pickathon weekends, it doesn't overlap with either of those primary audiences, but I think it will prove to be a significant summer music destination for the Northwest. If you're still thinking of going, head over to WTF's site for all the info.
Here's footage from last year's What The Festival. This will either look confusing, or like heaven on earth, depending on your taste and, probably, age.
Perhaps they're taking their cue from Coachella, which expanded to incorporate two weekends last year, or perhaps Sasquatch is capitalizing on the spectacular success of this year's festival, which sold out completely in 90 minutes. Unlike Coachella, the two weekends of Sasquatch next year will have entirely different lineups from each other, with no acts repeating from one to the next.
This is a boon to the Pacific Northwest concert calendar, I think, although the idea of actually going to Sasquatch twice in one year is a little daunting. On the surface, it does sound like the opportunity to see more bands, especially big ones from overseas that don't always get to the Northwest. Here's hoping the mammoth fest doesn't affect other summer festivals in the area, and doesn't take anything away from the Portland live music calendar. (Sasquatch often cuts both ways, with many acts unable to contractually play both Portland and Sasquatch, while others are able to use the opportunity to do a Portland show before or after their Sasquatch slot.)
[Editor's note: The Mercury attended a couple days of Sasquatch! along with our pals at Seattle's The Stranger, who just KILLED IT with their complete coverage over the weekend. Here's our outright thievery of The Stranger's excellent reporting; the links below will take you to their fine music blog, Line Out.]
The Stranger's Sasquatch Team of Excellence Oh Thirteen is pleased to announce: WE WENT TO SASQUATCH SO YOU DIDN'T HAVE TO!
HERE'S LITERALLY ALMOST EVERYTHING THAT HAPPENED:
- The road to Sasquatch is littered with fine reading materials and confusing/enticing car paint.
- It's windy, but the first three minutes of (S)asquatch look great!
- What rhymes with shmacklemore?
- Friday Digest: Telekinesis, Macklemore, and fancy-boy jingle rock... WHAT DO YOU HAVE TO LOSE?
- Derek Erdman experiences the strewn bindles and cosmik debris of Rose Windows, Anna Minard sees RA Scion at the unpronounceable stage, Bree McKenna considers sexy hoods at Black Rebel Motorcycle Club.
- Anna Minard on Akron/Family's improper name slash and otherwise satisfactory music.
- Josh Bis takes proper proper photos and marries them with proper words!
- Look at this Michelle Obama jacket!
- Derek Erdman befuddles teens, feels he can now retire. But not before he gets to the bottom of Sasquatch's foodies.
- Important port-a-potty update and Barfsquatch!
- Anna Minard ponders Andrew Bird's whistling abilities while I swoon over Tilson XOXO's matching outfits.
- Something happened and Tame Impala had to postpone their set and move stages. Cannibalism almost ensues.
- Sean Nelson's festival bra and Tallest Man on Earth makes girls cry.
- A taste of Pop Chips, bad interview questions, and some band no one cares about.
- Josh Bis does it again: Saturday photos of Devendra Banhart, Nick Offerman, the xx, Sigur Rós, and more!
- A row-boat has to fix the sign every time it blows over.
- Nick Offerman takes a pro-cornbread stance on technology.
- WAKE UP CAMPERS!
- Sometimes there are festival pictures you just can't bring yourself to take.
- Speaking of questionable fest photography: put a boob on it.
- Bree wants to know what's up with early crowds and summer sausage fests.
- Josh Bis caught Earl Sweatshirt, Killer Mike, Ronald Reagan, and more!
- Kelly O got down with Danny Brown!
- The Sunday digest: Elvis Costello, Kingdom Crumbs, Grimes, and a cute dog in someone's car > Mumford & Sons.
- This year, RAP RULED and indie rock drooled!
- Primus 3-D is the #1 thing at Sasquatch 2013!!!
- Azealia Banks, who makes up 50% of the women allowed to play Sasquatch, has cancelled.
- In the press hut: this hot pretzel decoy had our hopes up all weekend, and no one has any real paper.
- Sin Dawg's are definitely available in Ephrata, WA.
- Sasquatch gets soggy, Tig Notaro makes Anna fall over, and Mike Birbiglia notices that Edward Sharpe fans look exactly like Edward Sharpe.
- Josh Bis is a true American hero who stayed for the Postal Service, even thought it wouldn't stop raining!
Headliners don't get better than Menomena, and it's great to see Kishi Bashi on the bill (we're unabashed Bashi supporters). Wulapalooza isn't Kishi Bashi's only area appearance this weekend. He's also DJing at Holocene's weekly Aperativo happy hour this Friday (5-9 pm; Kishi Bashi will probably start spinning around 7). He'll be playing "fun dance jams" (the best kind of dance jams!) and, as with every Aperativo, there will be free appetizers while they last.
Last weekend, Boise hosted its second year of the rising Treefort Music Festival, and it was an absolute blast. I hopped in the car and drove across Oregon to check it all out—Boise's not that far away, you guys—and it was definitely worth the effort. Treefort's a multi-day, multi-venue affair that's the perfect springtime antidote to SXSW: It's small, cozy, and refreshingly free of schmoozery. Any corporate branding was completely invisible to me. Now, granted, Idaho is a bit chillier than Austin in March, and last weekend Boise's weather was colder than usual. But with all stages indoors except for the big main stage, plus plenty of booze flowing and everyone sharing in the good vibes, it was easy enough to keep warm. I've been to enough music festivals (and enough different kinds of music festivals) to be sick of them generally, and I feel confident saying Treefort is something special. If you follow any of the bands who played on Twitter or Facebook or Instagram, you'll certainly have noticed that they agree.
Portland bands made up a big part of Treefort's bill; I would reckon about a third of the bands were from PDX, although at times it felt like more. And Portlanders were a big part of the crowd as well. But this was really Boise's chance to shine. A small city with a small but tight-knit music scene, Boise's kind of the ideal place for this sort of festival: a localized downtown with enough venues and bars to host all the activities, including a killer record shop (Record Exchange), a trendy hotel (the Modern), and plenty of good places to eat (Basque cuisine!). Even with all the Treefort guests, the city felt a little big and empty. Compare that to how overrun Austin feels during SXSW, or even pockets of Portland during MusicfestNW, and it's refreshing. Crowds were not an issue (except in certain venues at night), and neither was transportation. Downtown Boise has a good number of cheap hotels, all within walking distance (I stayed two blocks from the main stage, without really even meaning to).
If you didn't already get your Sasquatch tickets (which sold out in a record 90 minutes time) then you are shit out of luck. If you did buy tickets, however, you are probably quite stoked right now because the festival just added Elvis Costello and the Imposters to the line-up.
To throw in a game-changer like Elvis Costello weeks after tickets already sold out? Now that's just mean.
Last year's inaugural Treefort Music Festival, taking place in downtown Boise, Idaho, looked really fun, as we enviously noticed from afar. This year, though, they've really outdone themselves. Yesterday they announced the final additions (more than 100 bands!) to the already impressive lineup, asserting that merely in its second year, Treefort is already definitively one of the Northwest's great music fests. Here's part four of a goofy promotional video series they made for the fest; I haven't watched the first three parts yet but I find this final installment oddly endearing.
A tip of the iceberg of who's playing Treefort on the weekend of March 21-24:
Sharon Jones & the Dap-Kings, The Walkmen, Animal Collective, Built to Spill, Earth, YACHT, Brother Ali, Camper Van Beethoven, Youth Lagoon, Gold Panda, Dan Deacon, Delicate Steve, SUBLIME FREQUENCIES, Shlohmo, Dauwd, Shigeto, THEESatisfaction, Japanther, White Lung, Foxygen, Naomi Punk, Deep Sea Diver, Slow Magic, Grass Widow...The list goes on and on, and there are lots of Portland bands playing as well:
Typhoon , Brainstorm, Y La Bamba, Quasi, The Thermals, Unknown Mortal Orchestra, Natasha Kmeto, Wooden Indian Burial Ground, Radiation City, Shy Girls, Genders, Karaoke From Hell, Wampire, Death Songs, AAN, And And And, Hillstomp, Dark Time Sunshine, Boy Eats Drum Machine, Nick Jaina, Sapient, Sun Angle, Quick and Easy Boys, Grandparents, Kris Doty, The We Shared Milk, The Jackolope Saints, Nehemia St Danger, Pony Village, Talkative, Milo Duke, Sam Cooper and Friends, Audioavi8Head over to the Treefort site and take a look at the full lineup (or peep the poster here), and you'll probably want to score some tickets, too, because this looks unmissable. (At $109 right now for all four days, that's cheap!) Now, who do I know in Boise who has a couch I can crash on?
The Sasquatch! Festival announced this year's lineup for the annual music festival out at the Gorge. Four days over Memorial Day weekend, and the lineup looks like this:
Mumford & Sons, The Postal Service, Macklemore & Ryan Lewis, Sigur Ros, Vampire Weekend, The xx, The Lumineers, Arctic Monkeys, Edward Sharpe & The Magnetic Zeros, Cake, Primus (3D), Empire of the Sun, Imagine Dragons, Bloc Party, Andrew Bird, Grimes, Dropkick Murphys, Built to Spill, Alt-J, Steve Aoki, Azealia Banks, Tame Impala, Father John Misty, Black Rebel Motorcycle Club, Tallest Man on Earth, Devendra Banhart, The Presets, Laidback Luke, Schoolboy Q & Ab-Soul, Danny Brown, Earl Sweatshirt, Killer Mike, P.O.S., Death Grips, Shad, El-P, Michael Kiwanuka, Solange, Twin Shadow, Divine Fits, Dirty Projectors, Japandroids, Azari & III, Disclosure, Baauer, Totally Enormous Extinct Dinosaurs, Menomena, Ryan Bingham, JJ Grey & Mofro, Porcelain Raft, Youth Lagoon, Ariel Pink’s Haunted Graffiti, Holy Ghost!, Matthew Dear, Toro Y Moi, John Talabot, Shout Out Louds, Surfer Blood, DIIV, Torche, Preservation Hall Jazz Band, Atlas Genius, Youngblood Hawke, Capital Cities, Fang Island, Red Fang, Reignwolf, Baths, Lusine, Yppah, Odesza, Four Color Zack, Beachwood Sparks, The Barr Brothers, Shovels & Rope, Willy Moon, Peace, Elliott Brood, Radical Face, Nancy & Beth (Megan Mullally & Stephanie Hunt), Akron/Family, Caveman, Telekinesis, Indians, Chvrches, Wild Belle, Suuns, Brown Bird, Bombino, Robert DeLong, Seawolf, ZZ Ward, Hundred Waters, Luke Sital-Singh, Wake Owl, Deep Sea Diver, Jherek Bischoff, Sean Nelson, Rose Windows, Nacho Picasso, Brothers From Another, Knowmads, Let’s Talk, Ra Scion, OC Notes “Golden Gods,” Kingdom Crumbs, Theoretics, Nissim (D. Black)At first glance, I was initially a little meh about some of the headliners, but dig a little deeper into that lineup and there is a lot of excellent stuff. Tame Impala, the Barr Brothers, Death Grips, Dirty Projectors, Bombino, Hundred Waters... not to mention local bands like Menomena and Red Fang (plus some great sounding comedians).
Comedy: Nick Offerman, Mike Birbiglia, Brett Gelman, Jenny Slate, Kyle Kinane, Brody Stevens, Jon Daly, James Adomian, Joe Mande
Passes go on sale this Saturday at 10 am at the Sasquatch! site.
The longer I’m here the more I realize that the entire thing is an untameable, restless, necessary idea. Each show is forever inching towards capacity, both for the public and badge-holding members of the press. By the time you finish asking yourself, “Where do I begin?” 10 bands you’ve been interested in seeing are already packing up to final applause.
College Media Journal. The festival itself is appropriately titled a “marathon.” A look at it: 1,300 artists, not even accounting for the unregistered unofficial off-shows. Nearly 120,000 attendees. All condensed into five 24-hour periods, with a bit of spillover on the pre- and post-days. Within one of the most overwhelming cities in America. You find yourself checking to see if certain limbs are still present in the morning. Your friends call your other friends to tell them that they woke up, the next afternoon, on the sidewalk. Bands and journalists alike talk about how they kinda can’t wait for the whole ordeal to end.
But the headache of it all has been a slow-coming inevitability. In a disconcerting way, it’s the only accurate form of festival. Fields and stadiums stand as the common ground for multi-date hundred-band events, but with exponential saturation in America’s music scene, a barometer for the contemporary could only take place across the body of a metropolis. Like the impossibility of staying on top of all internet media, there’s just no fucking way you can experience everything you’d like to here in a devoted manner.
Liz Harris (Grouper) curated the Portland bands (which include Golden Retriever, Ilyas Ahmed, Operative, and more), while music writer and former Titus Andronicus guitarist Amy Klein and her Hilly Eye bandmate Catherine Tung did the Brooklyn bands. You can download and stream it here, and you should go do that, because music is fun and cool.
Tin House celebrates the new issue with tomorrow night's event at Holocene with readings from the issue and musical performances by Cloaks and Golden Retriever.
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