Tonight in Seattle:  

Northwest Bands

Recommended Show: A benefit for The Glamour and the Squalor at EMP with Sean Nelson, The Young Evils & more {10/11}

The Glamour and the Squalor is a project I've been excited about from the beginning: a kick-ass documentary about a kick-ass guy, Marco Collins, covering both his impact on the music world AND its impact on him. Just in case you weren't listening to KNDD 107.7 The End in the 90s, Marco was the DJ who broke a bunch of amazing bands on the air waves, including Beck, Weezer, The Presidents of the United States, Foo Fighters, and some band featuring Ben Gibbard. Oh, and he's also been inducted into The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame! NBD, you guys. 

Anywy! TG&TS is SO close to being done, but they still need to raise a bit more cash to make a release happen. So they are brilliantly throwing a benefit concert at the EMP next Friday, October 11! And the line-up (curated by Marco, of course) is kind of insane, y'all: 

Sean Nelson!
The Young Evils!

(!!! my current lady-crush) Mary Lambert!
Nacho Picasso!
Ra Scion & Daniel Blue (motopony)!

Tilson XO!
DJ Action Jackson (from Fly Moon Royalty)!

So basically you get to rock out to a bunch of amazing Seattle bands, AND you'll get to see clips from the film presented by Director Mark Evans, AND you get to help this rad film get completed. Tickets are $35 and include 1 drink, or you can spend $100 for the VIP treatment, which inludes a meet-and-greet with Marco, the filmmakers, and the artists playing & 3 drinks. 

These things are gonna sell out fast, my friends. So get your tix now! And I'll see you there. 

{The Glamour and the Squalor Benefit Concert | EMP Museum | Friday, October 11 | 7pm Doors | $35 GA, $100 VIP | Tickets available online through EventBrite

Photo essay: more from Bumbershoot 2013!

We don't know about you guys, but we just can't stop basking in the glory that was this year's Bumbershoot! Lucky for us, long-time TIG friend (and one-time imaginary contributor) Laura Duffy was shooting with our own Imaginary Victoria this year, and has contributed some out-and-out GORGEOUS shots to our photo pool.

Have you checked them out yet? Why don't you spin our "We Miss You, Bumbershoot!" playlist while you scroll?

{Charles Bradley / by Laura Duffy}

{Charles Bradley / by Laura Duffy}
Charles Bradley and his Extraordinaires

{ZZ Ward / by Laura Duffy}
ZZ Ward

{Bumbershoot fans / by Laura Duffy}

{!!! / by Laura Duffy}


Bumbershoot 2013 wrap-up: the return of the 3-day music marathon

Bob Mould at the KEXP Music Lounge Bumbershoot 2013
Bob Mould appears to have rocked his own face off in my crappy iPhone photo.

Hi guys. Hi there. Remember how, for the last, like, 5 years, I've been all "OH I AM SO OLD I DON'T KNOW HOW YOU GUYS DO THREE DAYS OF BUMBERSHOOT"? Yes. Well. This year, I convinced myself that I needed to go to the entire weekend, because of the awesome line-up. 

ANYWAY. Because of having all the (grumpy) feels about pricing and crowds, I have either skipped going entirely, or limited my exposure to one day during the weekend. But I had so much fun the last two years that I decided to pack up my water bottle and aspirin and give it a go in the name of 90's nostalgia! I live-tweeted the whole weekend, and because I know you want it, I even made a Storify of all the action.

Here's a breakdown of all the awesomeness: 

Thao and the Get Down Stay Down

I started my day with Thao and the Get Down Stay Down in the KEXP Music Lounge. Having never been in there before, I didn't know what to expect, but people: I AM A HUGE FAN. Plug me in and turn me on oscillate, because I will definitely make it a point to see every band I love in there every year. Because damnnnnnn. It's good. Comfy seats, amazing sound (bring those earplugs), and a bunch of music fans totally rocking out, live, on the air. SO GOOD. 

Thao and her GDSD crew were also SO GOOD. I mean, seriously. So many great vocal highlights and wailing guitars and dancy, rockin' amazingness. That voice! That band! Who knew such a tiny girl could move a whole room like that? I made a vine video for you, but then then my phone eated the audio so you'll just have to use your imagination. 

Gary Numan (parts 1 & 2) 

Part 1: Numan blew me away in a cloud of Gothy clove-scented smoke, fucking KILLING it on the Music Lounge stage with heavy industrial tunes tinged with synthy pop (including a more rockin' version of his new wave hit "Cars") and my 16-year-old heart died all over the place about 20 times. Fortunately, Jenny George was with me and felt EXACTLY THE SAME WAY. Afterward, he graciously waited to talk to fans and take photos with them, which is how I ended up with a sweaty hug and a photo of us pressed cheek-to-cheek. 

BONUS: After I told him much I loved his set, Numan said, "Yeah, that was set was kind of subdued. (!!!!) Come see us later. It'll be turned WAY up!" 

Part 2: He was right. The second set outdoors at the Tune-In stage was WAY louder and way more energetic. WHAT. My heart melted all over again every time Gary would flutter his arms together in Gothy 80's poses, and I was broken in all the good ways by the time it was over. Oh, and also high. Totally and completely high, because of the dude standing right next to us with his huge blunt.


Latest comment by: Imaginary Amie: "Thanks, Jason! It turns out my boyfriend actually has all of them, so all I need to do is raid his iTunes. :) "

Sunday at Bumbershoot: BEST DAY EVER

{The Breeders / by Victoria VanBruinisse}
the Breeders

I really don't know how this year's Sunday installment of Bumbershoot could have been any better, save for maybe being carried around on a fluffy couch while being fanned and fed grapes, I guess? In all seriousness, though: Sunday really was the best fucking day ever. From the moment I stepped foot on Seattle Center grounds to finally flopping into the passenger seat of my buddy's car sometime before midnight, I had an absolute blast. Here's a few shots of what I managed to pack into my day:

{Sallie Ford and the Sound Outside / by Victoria VanBruinisse}

{Sallie Ford and the Sound Outside / by Victoria VanBruinisse}

{Sallie Ford and the Sound Outside / by Victoria VanBruinisse}

{Sallie Ford and the Sound Outside / by Victoria VanBruinisse}

{Sallie Ford and the Sound Outside / by Victoria VanBruinisse}
Sallie Ford and the Sound Outside

After grabbing a quad iced espresso at the LQA Caffe Vita, I beelined over to KEXP's Music Lounge for Sallie Ford and the Sound Outside. I know I've said it over and over and over again, but I really, REALLY love this band, you guys. Since first seeing them at the Fremont Abbey with Hey Marseilles back in 2009, I've watched (and heard) their whole band-persona evolve from sweet-sounding alt.rock-a-betty to a matured, melodic-yet-gritty storytelling vibe -- with each show that passes, they just keep getting better and better. True to recent form, Sunday's set did not disappoint, as the band delivered thirty straight minutes of super-tight jams, mostly off of the new record, Untamed Beast. {You'll be able to hear the whole session in the KEXP archive here, as soon as they have it posted. Highly recommended!!}

At the stroke of 12:30, I hightailed it over to the Words and Ideas stage to catch the last portion of the Barsuk panel, featuring Sean Nelson, Dave Bazan, and John Roderick talking all things Barsuk-y with label co-founder Josh Rosenfeld. It was most excellent to hear such lengthy, knowledgeable discussion in such an intimate setting, with topics ranging from Death Cab for Cutie to the saga of Pitchfork v. the Travis Morrison solo album and the indoctrination of Nada Surf into the Barsuk family. A+, gents.

{Ramona Falls / by Victoria VanBruinisse}

{Ramona Falls / by Victoria VanBruinisse}

{Ramona Falls / by Victoria VanBruinisse}
Ramona Falls

{Bob Mould / by Victoria VanBruinisse}

{Bob Mould / by Victoria VanBruinisse}
Bob Mould

We caught a couple of tunes from Portland's Ramona Falls before hustling back to the KEXP lounge for a set from Bob Mould. Holy fucking shit. BOB MOULD, you guys. These pictures don't really do the set any justice -- Bob & Co. were tearing around the stage shredding the crap out of the performance, and I was sitting in the second row all mouth-agape, barely able to take it in. Almost every photo I took was a blurred mess, so you'll just have to imagine how truly excellent it was to behold, at least until KEXP archives the performance at their site {keep an eye here for it to pop up sometime in the next week or two} and until our friend Laura gets more photos to us to post. Full frontal face-rocking-off!! So. Good.


Imaginary Watch This: The West's "It Was Disco and It's Over"

In the mood for a mini-love story? Wanna yell at the screen as if the two people on it will hear you and f**king make a move already? Awesome. Then this video by Seattle-based band The West is for you!

"It Was Disco and It's Over" is a nice, catchy indie rock tune, but what makes it even better is the fact that the video (directed by Jordan Albertsen) tells the tale of a sweet little love connection, complete with dancing, AND it showcases a bunch of places in Seattle and Bellingham. There's a list of businesses at the end of the video (I spied both Oddfellows and Everyday Music in there!!) and I think that's pretty cool.

If you like what you hear, The West is offering up a digital download of their entire alt-pop-rock-disco album, In Low Light, on Bandcamp for whatever you wanna pay. That's also pretty cool.

{The West's next show in Seattle is on October 19 at the High Dive with Ever-So-Android, or you can catch 'em in Portland on September 7 at Slabtown}

Bumbershoot 2013 music picks: onward to Sunday

Bumbershoot 2013 Sunday The Breeders

By day 2 of Bumbershoot, I'm sure I'll be utilizing my water privileges liberally, and opting for lots of layers since it looks like the weather is gonna do that sun/cloud/possibly rain thing. If all else fails, I'll retreat to The Center House (I WILL NEVER CALL IT THE ARMORY PEOPLE) and take solace in the miracle that is the Skillet Kale Caesar w/fried chicken thigh. 

Sunday, Sunday, Sunday (9/1) --- I'm headed for: 

The Breeders
TuneIn Stage (Fisher Green)

Oh, you were probably expecting that I'd put DCFC at the top of this list, but SURPRISE! They're NOT EVEN ON HERE (preparing for rotten fruit assault). Nope. My most thrilling show of the day, shit, maybe even the weekend! is The Motherfucking Breeders. "Cannonball" is one of those songs that I will never, ever, never ever, neverever get tired of. Kim and Kelley Deal + the 20th Anniversary of Last Splash? Hell to the yeah, I'm excited! 


Is it the weekend yet? Bumbershoot 2013 is almost here!

{TheeSatisfaction at Bumbershoot 2012 / by Victoria VanBruinisse}
THEESatisfaction, Bumbershoot 2012

With the excitement of Bumbershoot's approach comes that sad-trombone realization that summer is coming to a close (seriously you guys, LABOR DAY ALREADY?) and in this year's case, a particularly mighty and sunny Seattle summer at that. But really, what better way to spend it than a breezy weekend down at Seattle Center, taking in bands and art and comedy and panels and everything that this year's festival has to offer?

There's so much great programming at Bumbershoot that it seems literally impossible to get to All Of The Things that one wants to see -- and with that said, here are each day's absolute can't-miss non-negotiables on my music schedule this year:

{Charles Bradley at Bumbershoot 2011 / by Victoria VanBruinisse}
Charles Bradley, Bumbershoot 2011

Charles Bradley & His Extraordinaires {Saturday}

Seriously. Between 2011's No Time for Dreaming and this year's Victim of Love, Saturday's sets are sure to be jam-packed with that new-classic soul feel that Charles does so well. To quote the emoting that shot forth when the "Strictly Reserved for You" video came out: this man isn't just a performer, he is a literal force -- and he'll give you that capitalized Experience we all hope for at a show. Fuck it, I'm calling it now: Charles Bradley's set is going to be my Ultimate Festival Moment (tied with the Death Cab set, natch, but we'll get to that in a minute). Lucikly, you'll have two chances to partake in the bliss, as Charles and the Extraordinaires will be doing their main set on the Starbucks Stage on Saturday at 8pm, and if you were lucky enough to get a ticket, you can double-dip with a performance earlier that day for KEXP.

Speaking of, can we take a minute to talk about KEXP's Bumbershoot Lounge? Their series of in-studios are almost like a fest within the fest, with excellent crowd control and icy air conditioning. The station has lined up Thao and the Get Down Stay Down {Saturday}, Charles Bradley {Saturday}, Sallie Ford and the Sound Outside {Sunday}, Bob Mould {Sunday}, Superchunk {Monday} -- and that's just a fraction of the performers. The full schedule of bands is on the KEXP site here, but if you aren't already signed up for a seat, you're shit out of luck. Sorry. (We'll be sure to post pictures for you next week, promise!)

Other heavy hitters for Saturday: Thao and the Get Down Stay Down {Fountain Lawn Stage, 3:30pm}, !!! {TuneIn Stage, 6:15pm}, Washed Out {Fountain Lawn Stage, 9pm}, Sallie Ford and the Sound Outside {Plaza Stage, 9:30pm}, Heart {Mainstage, 9:45pm}

Death Cab for Cutie {Sunday}

As stated above, this one will be a tie for Ultimate Festival Moment, no contest. Transatlanticism start to finish = heart-explosion of monumental proportions. There's not even anything I can say about it besides (1) HOLY SHIT, it's been ten years?? and (2) see you in the front row. Mainstage, Sunday night, 9:45pm. Earlier on Sunday, the Words and Ideas Stage will host a panel at high noon, with a conversation about Barsuk Records (and their 15th anniversary!) with none other than Josh Rosenfeld, Sean Nelson, John Roderick, and David Bazan at the helm.

There's plenty to do in-between these Barsuk-y bookends on Sunday, specifically: The Redwood Plan {12:15pm, Fountain Lawn Stage}, Ramona Falls {12:45pm, Fountain Lawn Stage}, Tegan and Sara {2pm, Mainstage}, David Bazan {3:30pm, Fountain Lawn Stage}, Katie Kate {4:30pm, TuneIn Stage}, The Comettes {5pm, Plaza Stage}, Mates of State {5:15pm, Fountain Lawn Stage}, Bob Mould {6:15pm, TuneIn Stage}, The Grizzled Mighty {6:30pm, Plaza Stage}, The Breeders {8pm, TuneIn Stage}, The Zombies {8:15pm, Starbucks Stage}, Matt and Kim {10pm, TuneIn Stage}


Bumbershoot 2013 music picks: my dream list for Saturday!

Bumbershoot Music Picks: Heart

Now that I've covered everything else I'm looking forward to this weekend at Bumbershoot, it's time to get into the music. Please note: I say "Dream" list, because it's entirely possible I might not make it to see every single one depending on how much of an old lady I feel like I am after trekking around all day. (HAHA) Anyway! Music. Music is good. Here's what I'm planning to hit on Saturday (8/31)

MainStage (Key Arena) 

Heart!!! OMG Heart!!! Because Dreamboat AnnieLittle Queen and Dog & Butterfly were frequently spun on the Simon family turntable, I have a deep and abiding love for Nancy's guitar skillz and Ann's gorgeous vox. In fact, my first real concert was seeing Heart at The Coliseum (now the Key) with my dad during their "Passionworks" tour. Oh man, was I stoked to see the band the he loved -- even though we totally had the most nose-bleedy of all the nosebleed seats. 

This time I'll be front and center at the Key, rockin' to these amazing ladies. Bring on the "Barracuda!" And the "Magic Man!" And the "Heartless!" And maybe "Even It Up!" And for the love of god, please bring on the "CRAZY ON YOU!!!"  (I'll even settle for some "These Dreams," you guys. Because I once loved that album whole-heartedly and sang my little 14-year-old heart out to it!). YES YES YES AND YES. 


New Wimps video!

Happy Tuesday, imaginaries! Here's some early morning slap-in-the-face mod-punk jams from our pals in Wimps by way of their newest video, for "Hello Frustration." This track showcases everything we love about this band, best described by piggybacking on the heels of Chris Estey's most recent summer jams post about another A+ Wimps track, "Grump":

And here we end up back in the surf again, but it's the nasty end-of-night surf, after a day thrift shopping with B-52s, screaming along with X-Ray Spex in the trashed Cadillac you stole with your pals to cruise out to the beach, running into Geza X on some sound-waves. Cranky on crank and cranked up really high all at the same cesspool-swimming time, past cheeseburgers and bad routines and festering habits and the oozing complaint file ("it's all downhill from here"). Thank damaged goods for crunchy two-note riffs piled into a foot-stomping chorus: "You may be sick of me but don't be such a grump!" As Kierkegaard said about repetitions, this way brain-shattered bliss lies if that's your nitrous gas-bag.

On the odd chance you're not hooked on Wimps already, here's another glimpse of what got us on the junk in the first place back in March:


Highlights from Pickathon 2013

It was another incredible year out on Pendarvis Farm for this year's installment of Pickathon. Having had our inaugural visit last year, blistering temperatures and all, we knew that this year's trip would be nothing short of fantastic! With a great lineup (and cooler forecast) on the horizon, we went into the weekend with high expectations, and every single one of them was met. Here's a few highlights that made the weekend downright magical:

{Andrew Bird / by Victoria VanBruinisse}
Andrew Bird with Tift Merritt & Band

Hiking out to a stage built out of (mostly) branches in the middle of the woods to see Andrew Bird do an offbeat, slightly bluegrass-tinged set on opening night was without a doubt order of business number one for us this year. Greeted upon arrival to the catchy beats and gritty guitar hooks of Sallie Ford and The Sound Outside wafting out into the parking lot, we wandered onto the grounds and took in most of their mainstage set, immediately following it with that hike to the Woods Stage -- where we found throngs of people amassed around progressive African electro-pop band Vieux Farke, who delivered an unexpectedly blistering, make-the-whole-audience dance performance. And suddenly, a mere two hours into this year's whirlwind Farm Experience, it was already time for Andrew Bird.

{Sallie Ford and The Sound Outside / by Victoria VanBruinisse}

{Sallie Ford and The Sound Outside / by Victoria VanBruinisse}
Sallie Ford and The Sound Outside

{Andrew Bird / by Victoria VanBruinisse}

{Andrew Bird / by Victoria VanBruinisse}

{Andrew Bird / by Victoria VanBruinisse}

{Andrew Bird / by Victoria VanBruinisse}

{Andrew Bird / by Victoria VanBruinisse}
Andrew Bird with Tift Merritt & Band

In a fit of total perfection, Andrew Bird proceeded to enrapture us with an easy-breezy Bowl Of Fire vibe that we hadn't experienced in-person before, and it was downright incredible. Living up to every ounce of expecatation we'd collectively put on him, Bird played the bulk of his hour-long set with Tift Merritt and members of her band huddled around a single mic, crooning out into the darkness to an attentive mass of festivalgoers:

And that was just the first night!