Tonight in Seattle:  

Recommended shows

Recommended viewing: gory awesomeness at Grand Illusion Cinema this month!

Gates of Hell Lucio Fulci Grand Illusion Cinema

YES. It's October! And that means lots of lots of horror movies screening around town. I'm particularly excited for Grand Illusion Cinema's gory programming, which kicks off this weekend with some Italian horror and Grindhouse magic. 

Gorgeous 35mm and 16mm prints, a small, intimate setting, and some cheap popcorn! IMHO, there's no better way to see these films. $12 gets you a seat, and your money goes to a great, local, independent theater. 

Here's what I'm most excited about, but there are horrific screenings almost every night, so check their site for the full schedule! 

Saturday October 5, 8pm
Portland's Grindhouse Film Festival Presents 35mm Exploitation Mayhem! Organizer Dan Halsted will be in attendance. 

The Grindhouse Trailer Spectacular
Featuring 65 minutes of amazing grind house trailers from the '60s and '70s, including Italian horror, blaxploitation, hicksploitation, sexploitation, kung fu insanity, revenge films and more! I didn't even know some of those 'sploitations were a thing. You learn something new every day, huh? 

Gates of Hell (aka: The City of the Living Dead) 
A surreal masterpiece by Italian horror-master Lucio Fulci, which I AM SO EXCITED ABOUT. Rotting dead feasting on the living! Intestines everywhere! A creeptastic soundtrack! And my personal favorite: THE HEAD DRILLING SCENE. 

more...

Latest comment by: Ben Nason: "Maniac Cop 2 is even better than Maniac Cop; you've also got some Robert Davi up in that flame fueled insanity."

Don't miss: Laura Veirs at the Tractor {tonight!}

Okay, so, there's seriously at least a dozen places to go tonight in town tonight. Fiona Apple is at Benaroya, Mark Pickerel and his Praying Hands are doing a set at Easy Street (for free! 8pm), Dave Chappelle is at the Moore, Fox and the Law have their album release at Neumos, Dug is going down at Lo-Fi... and while they'll all be great shows, I'm putting my bet on Laura Veirs and Karl Blau at the Tractor.

"Sun Song," my favorite track off of Veirs' most recent release Warp & Weft, strikes a very specific chord with me as a now-resident of the Pacific Northwest: her bell-like vocals wrap long arms around the cities I know and love, when the warmth finally wins out over the mossy bones, string-plucks celebrating the first rays of sun breaking through they grey skies.

And to speak to the entirety of Warp & Weft, from her bio:

Beautiful, lush and at times deeply dark, "Warp and Weft" captures the intensity of motherhood, love and violence. Primarily electric-guitar driven, it is a fever dream of an album and could well be Veirs’ best work to date... Veirs was eight months pregnant with her second child during the recording; she says her experience as a mother brought about some of the more beautiful and painful songs. “I’m haunted by the idea that something terrible could happen to my kids but that fear pushes me to embrace the moment. This record is an exploration of extremes – deep, dark suffering and intense, compassionate love.”

Add in opener Karl Blau and you've got a recipe for a near-perfect night of northwest music. Feel all those from-here feelings in real-time tonight at the Tractor: the 21-and-up party gets started at 9:30pm, advance tickets are $15 and available here.


 

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!
Fences! 
Nacho Picasso!
Ra Scion & Daniel Blue (motopony)!

IG88! 
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

Recommended Show: Peter Hook & The Light at Neumos {9/25}

Peter Hook and the Light at Neumos Decibel Festival

My New Order fangirl heart is exploding all over the place because the 10th Annual Decibel Fest kicks off tomorrow night, and one of the showcases is Factory Pop, and that means PETER HOOK is playing!!! And not just playing, but playing the whole of Power, Corruption & Lies, along with New Order's debut album, Movement

omfghasdfasdghjlk 

I can't even. I just. I mean. THIS IS AMAZING. Anyway, incredibly, there are still tickets left. So you better get yours now!  

Also amazing, this video from Jimmy Fallon of Peter Hook playing "Love Will Tear Us Apart" with The Roots! The. Roots. 

Though I'm most excited about New Order nostaglia, check out the rest of the Decibel Fest lineup too, which includes the awesome Sub Pop 25 showcase at the Showbox 9/25, featuring Shabazz Palaces, The Helio Sequence, TheeSatisfaction, and Kingdom Crumbs. And also Moby! And Lorde (who I feel like everybody is talking about right now)! And a whole bunch of other great performers! 

{Peter Hook & The Light (11:15pm-1:25am) with ADULT. (10-11pm) + Nightmare Fortress (9pm-9:45pm) | Neumos | Wednesday September 25 | $30 DAY OFF |  9PM // 21+} 

Latest comment by: Imaginary Amie: "He is playing BASS and singing, but I heard he hates singing and was trying to get Moby to sing more. :) And yes, Moby was doing a very good Ian Curtis impression, both in dance and tone of voice. "

Don't miss: Father John Misty at the Moore {10/6}

Weed, shows, cruise ships, guns, visits to Santa, long drives, pirouettes, cigarettes, meaningful glances, hotel hallways -- who can provide such an ADD-esque (yet totally cohesive) snapshot of his life into a three minute and fifty-eight second video?

Father John Fucking Misty, that's who.


"This is where I fell over the other night."

The most DIY of FJM's video releases to date, "I'm Writing a Novel" hits our radar oh-so-fittingly, just as a stripped-down solo tour is getting underway. With such a penchant for stage antics, it will be downright fascinating to see what Josh Tillman's one-man act brings -- we have the feeling that his creative power / persona will manifest both through his gorgeous, bell-like vocals and levity-laden delivery, with just enough shaman-tinged-Laurel-Canyon vibe to remain decidedly Father John. (Even without the now-trademark "Hollywood Forever Cemetary Sings" full-blast freakout.)

Here's some supporting evidence:


"I don't need any new friends / 'cause I'm the mayor"

In case you've missed our love for FJM since last year's release of Fear Fun, pop on over here to catch up. Local and national dates below:

Oct. 03 - San Francisco, CA - Slims
Oct. 06 - Seattle, WA - The Moore Theatre {info / tickets}
Oct. 07 - Portland, OR - Aladdin Theatre
Oct. 08 - Vancouver, BC - Commodore

more...

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}

more...

Bumbershoot personal pan preview 2013: Saturday & Sunday

I am going to tell you what I know about this year's Bumbershoot line up for its full three days -- fortunately, it's a great year and there's almost too much to chat about! Thus, I'll be breaking it down in parts. And I know a little bit about a lot of things, and parts of things (I keep them in my drawers). But there are some other things that I don't know that much about so will either leave them out... or, take completely random and perhaps inappropriate wild-ass swings at previewing them! So, without further ado:

Things I wanna wanna do on Saturday, 8/31:

Dave B (12:30 p.m., Fountain Lawn Stage) 

Sometimes a fella or boo just wants to jam it. Doesn't want to hear about the economy, doesn't want to hear a bunch of threats or emotional larceny, doesn't need some drizzling "profound" sound effects in ponderous drip-hop mode, but merely wants to hit the beach or dance on the bleachers at a sports afterparty. Bumbershoot kicks out with recent Sound Off! wildcard winner Dave B, who didn't hit me when I first heard him a while back. But then he slayed us all sweetly at the Capitol Hill Block Party (his happily pureandtrue hip-hop set was a high point), and I'm primed for this live flesh follow up of his freshness. Gotta get his long-been-out The Coffee EP pronto. 

Mike Vecchione and Marc Maron (1 p.m., Comedy at the Playhouse)

Always take in a Marc Maron joint. He can be as nasty as he wants to be and still plays nice with others. I probably don't have to hype this too much, and Marc performs throughout the festival, this is just the first shot and I thought I'd mention it. He reminds me of my father-in-law if the dude was as well-read and more neurotic like me, which I guess says a lot about my wife. Anyways, when you think of Marc Maron, think of Californication if it starred a comedian. 

Nacho Picasso (1:15 p.m., TuneIn Stage)

XXL and Vibe love him now, but that's not why you need to get involved. There's a Cubist antagonism to NP's rants, tucked inside a city at the end of an all night rampage epilogue feel. It's dark, it's art, it's trap, and for regional rap it seems neither grotesquely falsely humble or hive-minded deluded about who's really cutting the checks and getting the minstrel spotlight. 

Down North (2 p.m., Plaza Stage)

One of the most underrated bands in the Pacific NW, Down North is tough enough to be jam-it Afro-punk, stylish enough to buy your lady a drink with a smile you just gotta forgive, soulful enough to bring the spirit of Michael Jackson into your neighborhood church, and born to make you bounce into the crowd. What I love about them the most is that I could totally see them kicking ass in an East Coast club between sets of no wave bands and noise units, bringing the heat and the heart to the art school scene. Yes, they're that smart and that on fire. 

Seattle Arts & Lectures presents The Lunchbox Project Live: Literary Pleasures and Musical Shenanigans (4 p.m., Words & Ideas Stage) vs. Kendrick Lamar (same time, Mainstage)

Okay, because I was obsessed with DMX too I will probably be at Kendrick to hear more and say I was there. I hear he was part of someone else's song and apparently named some names, something that never, ever happens in rap! Otherwise, if Down North drenched me in dance sweat, I will be seeing a bunch of word scribblers yammer about stuff I'm into while it's still light out.

How Was Your Week? with guest Ted Leo (4:45 p.m., Comedy at the Bagley)

Ted Leo is a man I really want to see interviewed live, and this podcast conducts great interviews. Ted Leo. Damn! So many things I want to ask him. I might take this one over, wrestling the mic from Julie Klausner (nah, I'm sure she'll do fine. But if there's a chance for audience questions, be ready lady!) 

The Physics (5:15 p.m., Fountain Lawn Stage)

Keep up with The Physics. That's what they say. They slyly subvert a lot of their contemporaries with lyrical surprises, nuanced rhythms, and choice samples. It's been "next big thing" yap for years but it really should happen. 

Fantagraphics Follies (6 p.m., Words & Ideas Stage)  

One-time maniacal punk music manager and now publishing maven Larry Reid hosts this roiling ode to the mightiest publisher alive, with talents like sublime graphic novelist Ellen Forney (Marbles, The Stranger), completely mesmerizing fine artist Jim Woodring (Jim and Frank and many other books), indie comics comedian Kelly Froh, and others entertaining us in weird and wonderful ways. Special happenings: Can You Imagine? plays! That's right, that girl group from comix-punk heaven lights down to light up the Words & Ideas stage! (Fantagraphics' own Peter Bagge plays drums for this sweetness.) This one will be packed out. Get in line on Friday, champs. 

Weird & Awesome with Emmett Montgomery (7:00 p.m., Theatre Puget Sound Stage) 

Emmett loves the strange, and wallows around in it with us comedically, but it's his humanistic touch, his gentle heart, his mindful awe that keeps his entertainments from seeming like a mere freak show. He always puts out a positive vibe even when things get Hunter Thompson-level "professional" (i.e., bonkers). 

Gary Numan, (8 p.m., TuneIn Stage)

You might not believe this, if you only know him from his hits, but Gary is killer live. Yeah, I know, sometimes synth-based artists aren't that inspiring, just standing there singing like robots as they push some buttons. Gary was a rocker first, and has cultivated an impressive following of fans who have been buying his albums whenever he cares to release them, and bone up on the live boots and such as well. This isn't "new wave exploitation" by Bumbershoot by any means; Gary's a worker, and has been rocking audiences regularly for as long as you've been clapping your hands to that synth-drum beat in "Cars." I can't wait to see him play "Praying To The Aliens" and most especially "Down In The Park" live -- the latter song being  a common cover by discerning, loving GM fans in bands all over the indie world. 

Heart (9:45 p.m., Main Stage) 

If you're a Seattle area kid of a good span of ages, you remember when they made the covers of magazines like Rolling Stone, spending many an incense-burning evening in a park listening to Dreamboat Annie etc. on your car stereo, turned up LOUD to seduce the minds of hicks from Eastern Washington. They've always rocked, and we've never not been proud of them. (Everyone gets a pass for 80s shoulder pads these days.) This show will be super powerful for anyone who has never caught Ann and Nancy soulfully putting their wild, witchy, loving talents out there for everyone to soak in. Do it. And for those who have caught 'em a few times as I have, we'll be back in the Black Velvet saddle again.

more...

Latest comment by: Cameron Lowe: "Agree JC was a great show and thoroughly looking forward to next year already, do you know if they have decided upon dates yet? everyday fun for anyone http://www.online-pokies-australia.com just play or browse for fun

"

Celebrate 15 years of Barsuk! {UPDATED!}

{Barsuk Is The Best}

UPDATE:

The lineup has been announced, and it's a doozy! The Long Winters performing When I Pretend to Fall, Nada Surf performing Let Go, Jesse Sykes and The Sweet Hereafter, Menomena -- plus tons of other bands and special guests! The links below have all been updated, and non-VIP wristbands are available to get you in to all four shows for a mere sixty dollars. They're on sale now, so get to clicking!

***

It's a red-letter day, you guys!!

Last weekBack in June, our friends at Barsuk announced their fifteen year anniversary celebration. After we all get our faces melted off listening to Death Cab for Cutie run Transatlanticism start-to-finish at Bumbershoot, we'll have a mere sixty days until a weekend of incredible shows: from Thursday, November 7th through Sunday, November 10th, Barsuk will be showcasing present and alumni artists at lineups across town; specifically, at the Showbox, the Neptune, the Tractor, and Neumos / Barboza. Holy shit!

Before you start building your fantasy shows off of the roster {like, Ben Gibbard doing a set of All-Time Quarterback songs to open up for John Vanderslice opening up for Nada Surf at the Tractor, maybe?}, get this: today at noon, Barsuk is selling fifty pre-sale wristbands that get you into all four shows, with Uber transportation to and from each one and a complete set of limited edition numbered and signed screenprints {by Jason Munn}. The wristbands are $175.00, which works out to about $43.00 per show for the bands and a ride and a poster. That's not new math or anything, it's just a really fucking good deal. In fact, it saves you money! And PS, all of the net proceeds -- all of them, from these wristbands and all of the single show tickets -- are going to benefit Gilda's Club Seattle.

So: set your timer for 11:55a PST, bust out that credit card, and head on over to the ticketing page to get ready -- these wristbands are going to sell out in a hot minute. As the lineups are announced and single-show tickets go on sale later this month, we'll be sure to post all the details, so check back often for news!

Why Pickathon is a festival you shouldn't miss this year {8/2 - 8/4}

{Langhorne Slim / by Victoria VanBruinisse}
Langhorne Slim at Pickathon 2012

***UPDATE: Tickets are still available for Pickathon {this weekend!}***

As most of the music industry flocks to Austin, Texas this week each March for South By Southwest, I find myself considering the often-unwieldy animal of festival atmospheres: why some are great, why some are terrible; in the case of the latter, why we attend them regardless. It doesn't really seem fair to put them all up on the chopping block against each other -- the conference-centered SxSW and CMJ, for example (daytime panels embedded within a town / city-wide sprawl of showcases and performances), can't exactly go apples-to-apples with Sasquatch! or Austin City Limits (multiple stages in a contained, open area). But whether it's a festival for the ages or one that's still wet behind the ears (like this year's Timber!), a few threads run common between them: as an attendee, we're going to be elbow-to-elbow with several thousand people experiencing varying levels of intoxication, sometimes with little reprieve from the sun, with long lines for the restrooms and either 'rough' or expensive, off-site accomodations.

So why do we do it? Especially here in Seattle, where we're fortunate enough to have bands performing every night of the week, our calendars often bursting at the seams? Well, if you're anything like me, the answer is simple: we do it for the music. We do it for the one-of-a-kind experience, we do it to see a bunch of our favorite performers centered in one spot -- and we do it because a good lineup trumps every single one of those sweaty, drunk bodies standing between us and our collective moment of band-umami. It's really not fair to say who does this best or worst -- I've had equal moments of near-nirvana seeing the Wrens at the Mercury Lounge in 2005 as I have in a throng of several thousand people watching Elbow at ACL a few years back -- but it's safe to say that the one place I've experienced the highest levels of awesome with the lowest levels of bullshit is at the Northwest's very own Pickathon.

{Pickathon 2012 / by Victoria VanBruinisse}

Last year's Pickathon was my first, and while it's pretty specifically curated (most bands centering around roots music, be it new-roots or indie-roots of Roots-roots), it was by far my favorite of all the festivals I'd attended in 2012 and years previous. It was by no means banjos-only -- the bands ranged from Neko Case and Langhorne Slim to THEESatisfaction and Thee Oh Sees, just to call out a few -- yet if you did see or hear a banjo, it was totally approriate and in context, and not showing up attached to some porkpie-hat wearing kid as an interesting prop. This year's lineup promises more of the same wide spectrum, with headliners like Feist and Andrew Bird, along with Sharon van Etten, Sallie Ford and The Sound Outside, Howe Gelb, and Foxygen {full lineup here} slated to take the stages. Thoughtful lineup aside for a moment, though, there are a lot of factors that make Pickathon worthy of consideration for your live music budget expenditures for 2013.

more...

Latest comment by: imaginary victoria: "

hey anonymous, thanks for the thoughts. I know some of the pickathon organizers personally and can say truthfully that this is not a 'money disease' issue so much as it is one of sustainability. there's about a 35% bump in costs, yes, one ...

Block Party alternative: Timber! {July 26 & 27}

If you're itching to get out of town this weekend, consider this: Timber! is a brand-new outdoor music festival taking place this year in good ol' Carnation, WA, this Friday and Saturday {July 26th - 27th}. Set in the serene backdrop of Tolt-Macdonald Park, and brought to you by the same people that organize Doe Bay each year -- Artist Home Presents -- Timber! has quite the respectable lineup for a first-year fest, providing a great alternative to the hustle and bustle that our friends at the Capitol Hill Block Party bring to the Hill each summer.

Tickets are still available {$45.00 for the weekend, with various camping options}, and are well-priced considering you'll be spending two days with the likes of imaginary favorites Fruit Bats, Quasi, Lemolo, Zoe Muth, Jenn Ghetto, Pablo Trucker, and about a dozen other local all-stars.

more...