It’s a big weekend for music, Seattleites! Capitol Hill Block Party is going to be in full swing, for those who love big crowds and… challenging parking. Three day passes are currently sold out but there are still single day tickets available so you may still be able to see The Flaming Lips, Girl Talk, Pickwick, STRFKR, Purity Ring, Telekinesis and other favorites form the NW and beyond. Also, this weekend marks the first annual Timber! Outdoor Music Festival out in Carnation, WA, for those who love campfires and sleeping on the ground. Timber! is a brand new festival from the fine folks who brought you Doe Bay Fest, so expect something more intimate and more natural than the urban alternative this week. Don’t miss anticipated sets from The Fruit Bats, Helio Sequence, Lemolo and Ivan & Alyosha, among others… So really, there’s something for everyone!
With City Arts Fest right around the corner, Seattleites are faced with an embarrassment of riches this week. To help you narrow down the options, here are our top picks.
10/16 (Tuesday) – Jason Lytle (Grandaddy) @ Barboza
The once and future Grandaddy frontman plays a new crop of beautiful, often heart-wrenching songs about the promise of rebirth, technology’s impact on society, fading memories of failed relationships.
10/18 (Thursday) – Absolute Monarchs @ Chop Suey
Absolute Monarchs, which many know as the other band featuring Joel from the muscularly dexterous, critically-acclaimed Seattle duo My Goodness, plays the finest high-energy distortion-driven rock your likely to hear all week.
10/18 (Thursday) – Gold Leaves @ The Crocodile
Seattleite Grant Olsen’s band that manages to create a sound that recalls simpler times with enough flourishes to firmly root itself in the here and now.
10/19 (Friday) – Ravenna Woods @ The Crocodile
Percussive, rhythmically dynamic acoustic rock from always entertaining Seattleites.
10/20 (Saturday) – Lost in the Trees @ The Crocodile
With frontman Ari Picker’s formal training in cinematic scoring, Lost in the Trees is a unique band that takes the incorporation of orchestral elements to a new level.
10/21 (Sunday) – Freelance Whales @ Chop Suey
While the band still leans heavily on keyboard-driven pop, Freelance Whales explore their darker side. The new singles are much more commanding and rich than their delicate, pretty predecessors off Weathervanes.
As we’ve said many times to friends and strangers within earshot and at least a few times on the blog, Ravenna Woods‘ music is a beautifully controlled chaos. They feature unexpected syncopation and wild drum beats wrapped in delicate harmonies and meticulously crafted lyrics. While their local roots already inspire us to favor them a bit, their musical chops are what make us love them.
Be sure to watch their full KEXP set below and head over to Vera to take in the highly percussive, rhythmically dynamic set in person.
3/30 Ravenna Woods, Redwood Plan, Ambulance @ Vera, Doors at 7:30 pm, $11-13, All Ages (As Always)
Is that the weekend yet? No? Well, Thursday certainly ain’t too shabby, so we might as well let ourselves think about the glorious days at the week’s end. Never too early to ensure we’re all getting the music fix we all need and deserve…
3/30 (Friday) – Ravenna Woods, Redwood Plan, Ambulance @ Vera, Doors at 7:30 pm, $11-13, All Ages (As Always)
Percussive, rhythmically dynamic acoustic rock from always entertaining Seattleites. Don’t miss the video below.
3/31 (Saturday) – The Lumineers, Y La Bamba, Sean W. Spellman of Quiet Life @ Neumos, Doors at 8pm, SOLD OUT, 21+
Sing-along friendly folk pop from a Denver trio – Note: The show’s currently sold out but don’t worry too much as you can see the band for a free in-store performance at Sonic Boom, Tuesday 4/2 at 6 p.m.
4/1 (Sunday) – John K. Samson (of The Weakerthans), Shotgun Jimmie @ Tractor Tavern, Doors at 8pm, $12-15, 21+
Cleverly worded songs and stories from Canada’s poet laureate of indie rock
As always, head over to our calendar page for the full rundown.
Our top picks for the week.
3/27 (Tuesday) – PonyHomie @ White Rabbit
Dark synth pop from Tron-loving Seattleites
3/28 (Wednesday) – Howler @ Sunset
Catchy, often danceable surf rock from young Minnesotans
3/30 (Friday) – Ravenna Woods @ Vera
Percussive, rhythmically dynamic acoustic rock from always entertaining Seattleites
3/31 (Saturday) – The Lumineers @ Neumos
Sing-along friendly folk pop from a Denver trio
4/1 (Sunday) – John K. Samson (of The Weakerthans) @ Tractor Tavern
Cleverly worded songs and stories from Canada’s Poet Laurette of indie rock
As always, head over to our calendar page for the full rundown.
As we’ve said many times before, we’re big fans of music-for-a-cause type situations. When causes we believe in join forces with bands whose tunes hit our ears favorably, more often than not, we’re going to recommend that show to you as well. As the headline gives away already, tonight’s one of those nights.
Team Up For Nonprofits, an up-and-coming group that raises much-needed funds for other local non-profits through the intersection of music and socializing (whether in-person events or of the virtual variety), is bringing two very talented acts from Washington, Ravenna Woods‘ Chris Cunningham and Lower Lights Burning (based in Seattle and Shelton, respectively), and one lively headlining act from Portland, Drew Grow and The Pastor’s Wives, together for a benefit at the Tractor tonight.
We wholeheartedly recommend getting there by 8 p.m. as the act we’re most excited about seeing is set to take the stage on the hour. Chris Cunningham of Ravenna Woods is not only the frontman of Seattle’s best percussive-acoustic trio, he’s one of the city’s musicians with the best senses of humor, which he’ll no doubt exhibit during his between-song banter. For Chris’ musical contribution to the evening expect a sample of Ravenna Woods’ trademarked take on beautifully controlled chaos, featuring unexpected syncopation and meticulously crafted lyrics.
12/15 Drew Grow and the Pastors’ Wives / Lower Lights Burning / Chris Cunningham (Ravenna Woods)@ The Tractor :: Doors at 7:00 PM :: Tickets are $15 in advance (Students advance for $10) :: 21+
While we’ve been Elba enthusiasts for years, it’s really been the band’s output over the past year that’s made us even more excited about the band. Sure, for most musicians you get street-cred by claiming to love the early stuff but there’s something to be said for getting to hear a band when they’re really hitting their stride. With January’s release of Diplodocus and even more so with the band’s brand-new self-titled, the band has really put their own stamp on their take on Modest Mouse/Pixies-influenced indie rock that we’ve enjoyed for what seems like forever.
If you’re already a fan or just like what you hear below, be sure to head over to Fremont’s High Dive tonight for a great-lineup that includes Ravenna Woods’ Matt Badger as well as fine acts from Austin and Portland.
9/22 Elba / Blue Skies For Black Hearts / Matt Badger / Jarrett Killen @ High Dive :: 8:00 pm :: $7