Balancing big names from blog buzz bands to bluegrass, Pickathon offers a diverse line-up unlike any other major music festival. This year’s big name headliners are Feist and Andrew Bird, bands I’m excited to see for certain, but I’ll be going for the rest of the line-up: Sharon Van Etten, Shabazz Palaces, Pure Bathing Culture, Sallie Ford and the Sound Outside, Parquet Courts, Kurt Vile & the Violators, Divine Fits …. just to name a few.
Tickets go on sale today, and if you’re looking to drop big bucks on a festival or try out a new one, I can’t recommend Pickathon highly enough. See you at Pendarvis!
Today brought the first new Postal Service song in a decade with Jenny Lewis on backing vocals. I dig it. Sub Pop offers up some additional details in the youtube comments:
To the best of our knowledge at this time, no, The Postal Service is not currently working on new material. And no, “A Tattered Line of String” is not a Give Up leftover from 2003. For those of you who like details like this, this song was actually begun in 2006 and finished up in 2012.
The Postal Service are headlining the sold-out-in-90-minutes Sasquatch Music Festival.
Over the past year Nashville’s Wild Cub has been building an impressive set of video’s for nearly every song from last year’s debut record Youth (including “Streetlights” featuring photo’s from Seattle’s Eleanor LoNardo) but it was the “Thunder Clatter” living room party video a few months back (above) that really caught my attention and sent me digging into their bandcamp in search of more eminently danceable tracks, which I found in spades with some distinct 80′s textures. They’re capping a round of west coast dates tonight with a visit the Sunset Tavern, where they’ll be joining Escondido and Prism Tats.
Last night’s Sasquatch Launch Party at the Neptune was a mixed bag, an angle the festival itself appears to continuing to strive for. When Mumford and Sons and the Lumineers were the first names listed, I did cringe, but also had to hand it to Adam Zacks for snagging a pair of bands who demand top billing these days. That the Postal Service was the name on the list that garnered the biggest crowd response though was heartening. Has it really been 10 years since I saw Jenny and Ben do that cute dance on the Gorge stage last?
The night’s very special guest and also bigtime Sasquatch headliner was not the Postal Service as multiple people in a position to know had hinted at (even the Pagliacci staff seemed to “know”), but perhaps an even bigger name at this very moment: Hot 100 #1 tag-poppers Macklemore & Ryan Lewis. Dudes are getting to stadium level now having played Red Rocks last week with Major Lazer, so even a meager 3 songs in the 1000-ish cap room at a moment when their popularity is peaking still felt like something special. Aside from details about charts and the now 81 millon views for “Thrift Shop,” “Same Love” live for the first time in Washington State since the song spectacularly influenced the election felt an event in it’s own right.
Though this year’s lineup was light on legacy and heavyweight headliners [insert Coachella *fistshake* here], it makes up for it in diversity and a focus on the what’s been emerging as of late. Though much of it isn’t necessarily catering to my admittedly aging tastes, the weekend has absolutely something to offer for just about everyone. It’s also nice to see a continued dedication to showcasing Seattle’s hip hop community, who this year have more representation on the list than everyone else from the area (Telekenisis, Sean Nelson, and Rose Windows being Seattle’s main notables otherwise).
Peep the full lineup at sasquatchfestival.com/lineup and a few more photos from last night which also featured Cody Chesnutt and Built to Spill below.
I hope Lavar Burton broke some heads to get two-piece Reading Rainbow to change their name to Bleeding Rainbow. I hope Geordie LaForge and his milky white eyes was so pissed at the power-pop-punk noodling of this snappy little group, that he barged in to his manager’s double-wide and declared that if he could do anything before his career took a final nose dive that it would be to make Reading Rainbow change their name … to Bleeding Rainbow. And that the repercussions of this demand were so great upon Reading Rainbow, so violent and teeth-gritting, that their only reprieve from Kunta Kinte’s wrath was to add two new members to the band, and drift down a far dreamier path. Where one might think that Bleeding Rainbow was the moniker of a smarmy mouthed punk band, or that you might think that Reading Rainbow was indulging their base needs to just wear leather jackets and sneer, the newly named and newly added Bleeding Rainbow are more moody alterna-rock than anything else. It isn’t a bad change, they’re still catchy and kind of cute, but it seems odd that in the wake of Lavar Burton’s psychic beating, that they’d go in a more listenable direction. Maybe it was meant to be all along, and maybe all of these violent L. Burton fantasies are something I should talk to my counselor about.
Bleeding Rainbow’s Yeah Right is out now on Kanine.
You’d think with their skull covered album, that Psychic Ills would be making more sinister, dark music. Maybe the ’10s have taken back the skull as something beyond just a looming symbol of death, decay and abject terror, because from what I’ve heard, this second album from Psychic Ills is a pleasantly psychedelic bit of rock ‘n’ roll. “One More Time” is so cruised out and laid back, the weed smoke and good energy can almost be seen wafting off of it in to the pink-tinged sky. This is psych at its most relaxed. lackadaisical even – the harsh edges worn down, the song feeling like the waking moments between dream and reality, that snatch of song that just barely climbs out of the dream world, holding on to your mind as you lay curled beneath a pile of blankets.
Psychic Ills new album One Track Mind is out February 19th on Sacred Bones.
I could pretend to be cool, to be hip, to be omnipotent, but the truth is I spent about six months last year vacationing off the face of the earth, and I didn’t hear nearly as much new music as I normally would have. Thus any claim that I could tell you the ten “best” Canadian records from last year would be even more farcical than usual, but I can offer ten that are worth your time and much-competed-for ear.
You can’t, if you grew up in the wonder years of The Wonder Years, help but think that Cocktails’ newest track “Hey Winnie” might be about Danica McKeller’s iconic portrayal of bland-faced Winnie Cooper. And though, I can’t find any actual evidence that Cocktails have some long term endearment for Kevin Arnold’s lifelong paramour, the song seems to fit in to the glowing, nostalgic ambience The Wonder Years extended out over a generation of youth. I’m not a fan of some of the saccharine 80s cribbing that the early ’10s have brought us, but Cocktails does sweet and sugary just right – tempering the tooth-rotting rush with just a pinch of grime. Winnie Cooper, wherever you might be, I certainly hope that this one’s for you.
Andy Human, solo project of Lenz lead-man Andy Jordan, feels as if it could be appropriate in a sequin covered leotard, a shiny onesie that prism-explodes laserbeams of light as the first spotlight hits it. Not to say that this is disco, or that is this late 70s dance music, oh no, this is punk rock (80s? late 70s) but dressed up with pulsing back beats and a touch of leg shaking. But don’t get Andy Human and company wrong, there’s punk rock that lives in the center of this Rolo, gritty, dirt-covered, leather jacket wearing punk rock that stabs its way out with sharp, short solos, and a heightened sense of distorted angst. Andy Human might choose to wear a glam suit with glowing piping and horn-rimmed, rhinestoned glasses (he doesn’t) but that’s just to get your ass shaking, your hands moving. The real center of this punk rock Tootsie Pop is rock ‘n’ roll in the most rotten way.
Pickwick‘s just announced the release of their debut record, Can’t Talk Medicine, to arrive March 12th, 2013. Before the record arrives though, it’s lead single with Jagjaguwar’s Sharon Van Etten is being packaged up in a covers EP that includes a Damien Jurado cover released last year and new recording of live staple “The Ostrich.” Listen to their cover of Richard Swift’s “Lady Luck” above with Van Etten singing the first verse, and then snag the whole EP on iTunes tomorrow.
Snag the single for yourself for free with the widget below: