Sasquatch! 2011 Preview

<p> <a href="features/features/sasquatch!_2011_preview/"><img src="" alt="Sasquatch! 2011 Preview" /></a> </p> <p> Memorial Day Weekend welcomes four-count ‘em-<u>four</u> days of Sasquatch! at the beautiful Gorge in George, Washington State.<span>  </span>With the...

Sasquatch! 2011 Preview

Memorial Day Weekend welcomes four-count ‘em-four days of Sasquatch! at the beautiful Gorge in George, Washington State.  With the main Sasquatch! stage and the smaller side stage Yeti, Banana Shack, and Bigfoot, Sasquatch! 2011 is an indie music fan’s wet dream, with acts from around the world as well as local boys making very good as they return home:



FRIDAY, 5/27

Foo Fighters, 9:30 PM, Sasquatch! Stage

For some people, Dave Grohl will always be, first and foremost, the drummer of Nirvana (QRO DVD review), but he’s forged a massively successful career fronting his own Foo Fighters for over fifteen years now.  Along with former Sunny Day Real Estate bassist Nate Mendel and sometimes member Pat Smear (of iconic punk act The Germs), they’re up to record number seven in last month’s Wasting Light – their first to make it to #1 on the Billboard charts.

Wasting was also a reunion of sorts, featuring not only a guest appearance by Nirvana bassist Krist Novoselic (as well as icon-in-his-own-right Bob Mould – see below), but also was produced by Nevermind producer Butch Vig (who did his own drumming in Garbage).  Seattle grunge returns to the Pacific Northwest!

Foo Fighters
Death From Above 1979, 8:00 PM, Sasquatch! Stage

For an act that only broke up five years ago, Death From Above 1979’s reunion is actually one of the most anticipated.  It helps that the duo of Jesse F. Keeler (who’s been in MSTRKRFT since the break-up – see below) and Sebastien Grainger (who had his own solo career after the break-up – QRO album review) basically invented the dance-punk/noise-rock scene.  Their initial reunion gig at South-by-Southwest earlier this year (QRO recap) was so mobbed that policemen came in on horses and used mace – won’t be that nuts at Sasquatch!, but expect a wild time.

Death From Above 1979
The Bronx, 6:45 PM, Sasquatch! Stage

Recently, certain hardcore bands have been breaking into the indie-mainstream, such as Canada’s Fucked Up (QRO album review) and Los Angeles’ The Bronx (other than Chicago & Boston, are any bands named after their own hometowns?…).  Not that The Bronx (QRO photos at a festival) are your run-of-the-mill hardcore act – see their latin alter ego, Mariachi El Bronx (see below).

The Bronx
Against Me!, 6:10 PM, Bigfoot Stage

Northern Florida’s given the world a lot of punk, some of it good, some of it not so much, but on the more positive side is Against Me! (QRO photos).  Fronted by Tom Gabel (QRO interview), Against Me! successfully made the jump to major label without losing their edge, most recently on last year’s White Crosses (QRO review).

Against Me!
Bob Mould, 5:45 PM, Sasquatch! Stage

No one at Sasquatch! has been doing it as long as Bob Mould.   From the seminal Hüsker Dü (QRO spotlight on) in the eighties through the nineties’ successful Sugar to his solo work and today’s Bob Mould Band (QRO live review), Mould has been crafting great record after great record, most recently with 2008’s District Line (QRO review) & the following year’s Life and Times (QRO review).  But he’s also well versed in solo performances (QRO live review), the veteran still able to rock hard and loud, while baring his soul even more.

Bob Mould
Biffy Clyro, 5:05 PM, Bigfoot Stage

Who the fuck is Biffy Clyro?  Actually a band, not a man, the Scottish rock band is a major name in their native Britain, with nominations/wins for Mercury Prize, NME Awards, and BRIT Awards, so it’s past time that America finds out who the fuck Biffy Clyro is.

Biffy Clyro
Mariachi El Bronx, 4:30 PM, Yeti Stage

Los Angeles’ hardcore act The Bronx (see above) don their sombreros to become Mariachi El Bronx (QRO photos at a festival).

Mariachi El Bronx
Rival Schools, 4:00 PM, Bigfoot Stage

The New York hardcore ‘supergroup’ (QRO live review) left a mark in 1999 with United By Fate, only to break up soon after.  But the band reunited and hit the road in 2008 – all the while working on new material for the long-awaited sophomore LP, the recently released Pedals (QRO review), and has kept it up on the long and winding road (QRO photos in Europe).

Rival Schools




Sleigh Bells, 10:10 PM, Banana Shack Stage

Somewhere between noise and pop lies Brooklyn’s Sleigh Bells (QRO photos at a festival).  The duo of Derek E. Miller & Alexis Krauss (QRO photos) all of a sudden became the hottest thing out there with debut Treats, including touring with M.I.A. (QRO photos) – but are they, like M.I.A., all hype?…

Sleigh Bells
Death Cab For Cutie, 9:45 PM, Sasquatch! Stage

Hometown heroes return triumphant!  When Pacific Northwest alternative favorite Death Cab for Cutie left long-time indie imprint Barsuk for major Label Atlantic in 2005 with Plans, fans thought the sky might be falling.  But instead, Death Cab has released not one, but two of their best records to-date, following up Plans last year with the excellent Narrow Stairs (QRO review) – and their latest, Codes and Keys (QRO review), is out the Tuesday after Sasquatch!.

Singer/guitarist Ben Gibbard (QRO album review) may have gone from dork to looking like a Cascadian beefcake – he is married to Zooey Deschanel of She & Him (QRO live review)/500 Days of Summer (meanwhile, his side project, The Postal Service, seems will never release a follow-up to the much beloved Give Up), but guitarist Chris Walla is still an indie producer extraordinaire (and kept his alt-cred with his own solo record in 2008 on Barsuk, Field ManualQRO review).  And with over a decade’s worth of strong material, their well is deep for a wide performance.

Oh, and this will be their fourth appearance at Sasquatch!!

Death Cab for Cutie
Robyn, 9:00 PM, Bigfoot Stage

Robyn (Robin Miriam Carlsson – QRO photos at a festival) gained international fame with nineties dance-pop hits like “Show Me Love”, but then retreated to her home base of Sweden until relatively recently.  Back-up vocals on Britney Spears’ “Piece of Me”, opening for Madonna in Europe, and being featured on Röyksopp’s Junior (QRO review) all set the stage for her three-part charting Body Talk series last year.

Bright Eyes, 8:15 PM, Sasquatch! Stage

Welcome back, Conor Oberst. As Bright Eyes (QRO photos), Conor Oberst won legions of hearts (including Summer’s on The O.C.QRO Music of The O.C.), but after 2007’s Cassadega (QRO review), he dropped the name and strayed into unfortunate country terrain (QRO live review). However, not only is the Bright Eyes name back, but also the Bright Eyes sound on The People’s Key (QRO review).

Bright Eyes
The Glitch Mob, 8:15 PM, Banana Shack Stage

Electronic outfit The Glitch Mob aren’t just button-pushers, but integrate their laptops & MIDIs into their live show, making them suitable for the club or the festival.

The Glitch Mob
Matt & Kim, 7:30 PM, Bigfoot Stage

Serious, long-time ‘Friends of the Q’ (QRO spotlight on), it’s been great watching Matt & Kim (QRO photos at a festival) blow up so seriously – without losing their infectious cheer (QRO photos).  Singer/keyboardist Matt Johnson (QRO interview) and drummer Kim Schifino (QRO interview) bring a self-described “onstage pizza party” with their sugar-filled hyper-pop/rock on stage (QRO live review).  Known for spreading their giant, ever-present grins to every crowd they play for (QRO live review), large, outdoor stages (QRO live review outdoors) don’t faze them, and neither do massive festivals (QRO photos at a festival), nor even foreign crowds (QRO live review overseas).  They also stepped up their musical game on 2009’s Grand (QRO review), with Sidewalks (QRO review) last fall.  So expect them to rock the crowd (QRO photos), from old tracks like “Silver Tiles” (QRO video) and “Yea Yeah” (QRO video) to Grand ones like “Good Old-Fashioned Nightmare” (QRO video) and “Daylight” (QRO video) – as the kids go nuts (QRO photos at a festival), and so do Matt & Kim (QRO live review).

Matt & Kim
Washed Out, 7:00 PM, Banana Shack Stage

Slowly percolating up has been the new ‘chillwave’ movement, whose sound is about as defined as that term, but one of those artists is Ernest Greene (QRO photos), whose recently moved his work out of the bedroom (where he recorded Life of Leisure EPQRO review) and onto the live stage as Washed Out (QRO photos at a festival).

Washed Out
Iron & Wine, 6:45 PM, Sasquatch! Stage

As Iron & Wine (QRO photos), Samuel Beam has become one of the leading voices in today’s alt-folk troubadour arena, making it to #2 on the Billboard charts with his latest, Kiss Each Other Clean (QRO review), despite it being a bit of a slide in accomplishment.  And though he hails from the Confederacy, him & his beard will be right at home at Sasquatch!, which he plays for the second time.

Iron & Wine
The Thermals, 6:45 PM, Yeti Stage

Portland locals The Thermals (QRO photos) have become lo-fi heroes since their debut, More Parts Per Million, delivering catchy pop-punk the kids love (and playing Sasquatch! in 2003).  However, even after moving from Seattle’s Sub Pop to their hometown’s Kill Rock Stars with 2009’s Now We Can See (QRO review) and this year’s Personal Life (QRO review), they’ve never become that impressive to a finer-tuned ear.  But they’ve got a legion of fans (QRO photos) that turn out in force, especially outdoors (QRO photos outdoors), at a festival (QRO photos at a festival), and especially outdoors at a festival (QRO photos outdoors at a festival).

The Thermals
The Antlers, 6:20 PM, Bigfoot Stage

The newest of the next wave of Brooklyn acts is The Antlers (QRO photos), who first blew people away with epic concept album Hospice, then opened for the likes of Ra Ra Riot (QRO live review, opening for Ra Ra Riot), Editors (QRO album reviewQRO photos, opening for Editors) and The National (QRO spotlight onQRO photos, opening for The National).  But now they’ve graduated to headlining their own big gigs (QRO live review, outdoors & headlining), and are out with their new Burst Apart (QRO live review), the follow-up to their critically acclaimed breakthrough debut, Hospice (QRO photos at a festival).

The Antlers
Wye Oak, 5:40 PM, Yeti Stage

From Baltimore is the duo of Andy Stack & Jenn Wasner, a.k.a. Wye Oak (QRO photos).  While records like debut If Children (QRO review), follow-up The Knot (QRO review), and latest Civilian tackle the sweeter indie-folk side of things, live (QRO photos at a festival) the band rocks a lot harder, especially Wasner’s axe (QRO photos at a festival).

Wye Oak
Pink Martini, 5:30 PM, Sasquatch! Stage

Portland’s own ‘little orchestra’ (if a thirteen-piece can be described as “little”) mixes pretty much everything for a United Nations of sound.

Pink Martini
Jenny & Johnny, 5:10 PM, Bigfoot Stage

Former child actress Jenny Lewis (QRO photos) found a second life in indie-rock outfit Rilo Kiley (QRO album review), then split her time between Kiley and her solo career as an alt-country songstress with 2006’s Rabbit Fur Coat and 2008’s Acid Tongue (QRO review).  Just not having enough balls in the air, she recently teamed up with boyfriend/musician in his own right Jonathan Rice as the nice-if-underwhelming Jenny & Johnny (QRO photos) on the nice-if-underwhelming I’m Having Fun Now (QRO review).

Jenny & Johnny
J Mascis, 4:35 PM, Yeti Stage

Rivaling Bob Mould (see above) for ultra-veteran status at Sasquatch! is the one-and-only J Mascis (QRO photos).  His own three-piece Dinosaur Jr. (QRO live review) did eventually dissolve – but also came back, first playing old material, but then coming out with the as-good-as-it-gets Beyond (QRO review) and Farm (QRO review) for arguably the greatest of all the indie-rock reunions of this century/millennium.  But J needs no one, and comes to Sasquatch! on the back of his new solo album, Several Shades of Why (QRO review).

J Mascis
Wolf Parade, 4:20 PM, Sasquatch! Stage

Sometimes overlooked in the ‘Canadian Invasion’, Montreal’s Wolf Parade (QRO live review) delivered a strong debut in 2005 with Apologies To Queen Mary, and kept that up with 2008’s At Mount Zoomer (QRO review).  One reason the attention hasn’t been as high is because it’s been diffused into not only the Parade (QRO live review), but also the acclaimed side-projects of singer/keyboardist Spencer Krug (Sunset Rubdown – QRO live review) and singer/guitarist Dan Boeckner (Handsome Furs – QRO album review).  But they came back to the Wolf (QRO photos at a festival) last year with Expo 86 (QRO review).

Wolf Parade
Sharon Van Etten, 4:05 PM, Bigfoot Stage

While there’s a ton of stripped songstresses out there, one of the nicer ones is Sharon Van Etten (QRO photos at a festival), who evoked the sad strains of Appalachia on her debut last year, Because I Was In Love (QRO review).  Her latest, this year’s Epic (QRO review), has seen the Brooklyn ‘it girl’ (QRO photos at a festival) get even more acclaim.

Sharon Van Etten
Dan Mangan, 3:30 PM, Yeti Stage

Canada has lots of alt-country/folk singer/songwriters who bare their soul – the mix of the cold, sparse expanses of the Great White North and the state support of the Factor program has produced many artists like Dan Mangan, but he’s Nice, Nice, Very Nice (QRO review).

Dan Mangan
Local Natives, 3:15 PM, Sasquatch! Stage

Silver Lake’s Local Natives (QRO photos at a festival) have been riding the alt-country/folk wave, but seem to be doing it better than most, charting last year with debut Gorilla Manor, moving up to headliner tours (QRO live review), and well-received on the festival circuit (QRO photos at a festival), including Sasquatch! last year (QRO photos at Sasquatch! 2010).

Local Natives
The Head and the Heart, 2:10 PM, Sasquatch! Stage

Very recently, things have been seriously booming for The Head and The Heart (QRO coverage at a festival).  The Seattle alt-folk/pop band was signed by Sub Pop, named their city’s best new band by Seattle Weekly, opened for everybody from Dave Matthews to Death Cab (see above), and even played Conan (QRO Indie on Late Night TV)!

The Head & The Heart
The Radio Dept., 1:05 PM, Sasquatch! Stage

Since the success of their long-awaited 3rd LP, Clinging to a Scheme (QRO review), released early last year, the shy men of The Radio Dept. have been coming out of their shell – just enough to tour sold out shows and give unexpected amount of interviews (QRO interview).  The Swedish trio with stage fright seem unlikely candidate for big festivals like Coachella and Sasquatch!, but they are not only playing on the main stage but also in daylight, which means they cannot hide behind fogs and low lighting (QRO live review).  The Radio Dept.’s intelligent gorgeous pop songs about love, politics, resentment, and paranoia, sung by Johan Duncanson’s soft vocals may get lost in the afternoon flavor of an outdoor festival.  No matter, they’ll always get our respect as one of the truest indie bands, as well as being honest and nice (QRO live review).

The Radio Dept.
Alberta Cross, 12:00 PM, Sasquatch! Stage

London’s Alberta Cross have made a major showing there, being part of opening tours for the likes of The Shins (QRO live review) to Oasis.  Having since moved to New York, their blues-influenced alt-rock is getting even closer to home.

Alberta Cross



SUNDAY, 5/29

Ratatat, 11:00 PM, Bigfoot Stage

New York’s Evan Mast & Mike Stroud form the electronic duo known as Ratatat (QRO photos at a festival).  After putting out a self-titled record & following it up with Classics, the last two full-lengths have kept the simple-and-sweet-name, in LP3 (QRO review) and LP4.  Fun will definitely be had, thanks to Ratatat’s energetic, psychedelic live show (QRO live review).

Modest Mouse, 10:00 PM, Sasquatch! Stage

Rivaling Death Cab (see above) for ‘local boys made good’ is Washington State’s Modest Mouse (QRO photos), who broke through to mainstream success in 2004 with Good News For People Who Like Bad News, and followed that up by adding Smiths guitarist Johnny Marr for 2007’s We Were Dead Before the Ship Even Sank (QRO review) – unfortunately, Marr has since left to join the even younger Cribs (QRO live review).  But they’re still big enough to headline (QRO photos headlining a festival).

And Modest Mouse (QRO photos outdoors) will also be tying Death Cab with their own fourth Sasquatch! appearance!

Modest Mouse
MSTRKRFT, 10:00 PM, Banana Shack

While Sebastien Grainger took the punk side of acclaimed Toronto act Death From Above 1979 (see above) in solo career (QRO album review), the other half of DFA1979, Jesse F. Keeler, went electro-house with new partner Al-P.  He’s also doing the rare double-duty at Sasquatch!.

Yeasayer, 9:00 PM, Bigfoot Stage

The experimental Yeasayer (QRO live review outdoors) combine electronica, rock, and even tribal sounds, making them sound like the music of the cyberpunk future, multi-cultural in ways you’d never foresee (QRO live review).  They’ve been steadily building since 2007’s All Our Cymbals (QRO review) and the futuristic “2080” (QRO video) & “Wait For the Summer” (QRO video), and managed to beat the sophomore curse with last year’s impressive Odd Blood (QRO review) and songs “Ambling Alp” (QRO video) & “O.N.E.” (QRO video).  They’ve also got a fascinating stage presence (QRO photos outdoors), especially at festivals (QRO photos at a festival) – even overseas (QRO live review in the U.K.) & in foreign-speaking lands (QRO photos at a German festival).

Flying Lotus, 8:40 PM, Banana Shack Stage

While Flying Lotus (QRO photos outdoors) might be best known for making the music in Adult Swim’s bumpers (that text right before a show on the cable channel), he’s also an accomplished producer, as well as making & playing music in his own right (QRO live review),

Flying Lotus
Flaming Lips, 8:00 PM, Sasquatch! Stage

There’s a good reason The Flaming Lips (QRO photos at a festival) have been so popular for so long on the festival circuit, as there is no live show out there like a Flaming Lips live show (QRO live review).  Confetti cannons, costumes, video screens, balloons from the sky, puppets, singer/guitarist Wayne Coyne surfing the crowd in a giant plastic bubble – The Lips have it all (QRO photos), and expect them to take it even higher (QRO photos at a festival).  Oh, and they’ve got some great music, too, from early nineties hit “She Don’t Use Jelly” to 2006’s Grammy Award-winning At War With the Mystics (even put out a movie, Christmas On MarsQRO review), and 2009’s Embryonic (QRO review).

Sasquatch! 2008 saw the premiere of Christmas, not to mention the band’s ‘U.F.O. Show’, so who knows what Coyne & co. (QRO photos) have up their sleeves for this, their third Sasquatch! appearance.

Flaming Lips
GAYNGS, 7:30 PM, Bigfoot Stage

The upper Midwest’s odd, near-super-group GAYNGS includes modern troubadour Justin Vernon, a.k.a. Bon Iver (QRO album review), rapper P.O.S., Ivan Howard of The Rosebuds (QRO spotlight on), members of freak-folk outfit Megafaun (QRO photos outdoors) & of the dancetronic Solid Gold and more, who came together for the old-is-new Relayted (QRO review) last year, and now are taking it out on the road.

Gold Panda, 7:25 PM, Banana Shack Stage

England’s Gold Panda (real name: Derwin Panda) (QRO live review) is one of the many DJ/producers (QRO album review) who also try out performing live, and while that lowers the bar severely, Gold Panda (QRO photos at a festival) is one of the best of that bunch.

Gold Panda
Das Racist, 6:45 PM, Yeti Stage

Check out mock-rap outfit Das Racist (QRO photos at a festival), especially their hilarious breakthrough single, “Combination Pizza Hut and Taco Bell”.

Das Racist
Flogging Molly, 6:30 PM, Sasquatch! Stage

Flogging Molly (QRO photos) is on the leading edge of today’s workingman’s punk rock.  The Celtic tinge to this Los Angeles act (QRO photos) has only grown, with 2008’s produced-in-Eire Float reaching new heights in popularity for the genre, as well as bringing it to the wide open air (QRO photos outdoors).  They have become a strong presence on the festival circuit (QRO photos at a festival), including 2009’s Warped Tour (QRO photos).

Flogging Molly
Archers of Loaf, 6:20 PM, Bigfoot Stage

Amidst all of the alt-reunions, how are Archers of Loaf only reuniting now?  The Chapel Hill act were as important to the nineties alternative music scene as Pavement (QRO live review), and deserve as great a reunion tour.

Archers of Loaf
Mad Rad, 5:40 PM, Yeti Stage

Sasquatch! isn’t exactly loaded with hip-hop in 2011, eschewing the big-name rap stars playing to lily-white alt-crowds one sees in so many other festivals these days.  So it’s good that Seattle’s Mad Rad incorporates electro, dance, new & newer wave and more into the hip-hop.

Mad Rad
Cold War Kids, 5:25 PM, Sasquatch! Stage

After a string of EPs, Fullerton, California’s Cold War Kids (QRO photos) blew up in 2006 with their full-length debut, Robbers & Cowards.  While 2008’s Loyalty to Loyalty (QRO review) suffered something of a sophomore slump, this year’s Mine Is Yours (QRO review) lifted things, and their live show (QRO photos) is still electric, especially outside (QRO live review outdoors), as they still ring with singles (QRO photos), from the more recent “Mine Is Yours” and “Audience” (QRO video) to their break-outs “We Used To Vacation”, “Hospital Beds” (QRO video), and “Hang Me Out To Dry” (QRO video).

Cold War Kids
City and Colour, 5:10 PM, Bigfoot Stage

Dallas Green, singer/guitarist of emo-punk band Alexisonfire, embraces his sad, acoustic side as City and Colour (he’s Canadian, thus the extra ‘u’ – 2005’s Sometimes only came out in America in 2009 – QRO review), returning to Sasquatch! for a second year in a row.

City and Colour
Black Joe Lewis & The Honeybears, 4:35 PM, Yeti Stage

On Tell ‘Em What Your Name Is (QRO review) and the recent Scandalous, Austin native Black Joe Lewis (QRO photos at home at a festival) pretty much just copied James Brown, but even a copy of the hardest working man in show business brings a party (QRO photos outdoors at home).

Black Joe Lewis & The Honeybears
Beach House, 4:20 PM, Sasquatch! Stage

The guitar-and-keys pair of Victoria Legrand and Alex Scally (QRO photos at a festival) may hail from Baltimore, but there’s a Francophile expanse to Beach House (QRO photos).  2008’s Devotion (QRO review) earned them many fans that felt that way (QRO live review), and last year’s Teen Dream (QRO review) was shortlisted for ‘albums of the year’, and they’re working the festivals (QRO photos at a festival).  And the sweet sounds work in the bright sunlight (QRO photos outdoors), like at Sasquatch! two years ago.

Beach House
Sam Roberts Band, 4:05 PM, Bigfoot Stage

While not very well known in America, Sam Roberts Band is one of the biggest acts in Canada – they’re like the hockey of rock ‘n’ roll.  2001 debut The Inhuman Condition was one of the best-selling independent releases in Canadian history, and the trilingual Quebecois musician is a mainstay up north.  So raise a can of Molson, eh, and find out what they’re all talking a-boot as the band plays their third Sasquatch! appearance, behind their new Collider and great single “Longitude” (QRO review), which features fellow Montréalais Elizabeth Powell (QRO interview) of Land of Talk (QRO spotlight on).

Sam Roberts Band
Other Lives, 3:30 PM

Stillwater, Oklahoma’s TV soundtrack staple Other Lives (QRO photos at a festival) return to Sasquatch! on the back of their new Tamer Animals.

Other Lives
Tokyo Police Club, 3:15 PM, Sasquatch! Stage

When Tokyo Police Club (QRO live review) exploded onto the scene with such songs as “Cheer It On” (QRO video) and “Your English Is Good” (QRO video), the young (Toronto) band delivered – but could they age well (QRO photos)?  Well, Dave Monks (QRO photos), Greg Alsop (QRO interview), Graham Wright (QRO interview), and Josh Hook (QRO photos) have, with 2008’s Elephant Shell (QRO review) & last year’s Champ (QRO review) finding that sweet spot between growing up and staying young with new greats like “Tessellate” (QRO video), “Frankenstein” (QRO video), and “Favourite Food” (QRO video) – and staying a definite QRO favourite (QRO spotlight on).

Tokyo Police Club
S. Carey, 3:00 PM, Bigfoot Stage

Once upon a time, Justin Vernon was just known as the touring guitarist for The Rosebuds (QRO spotlight on).  But then he put out his own material as Bon Iver (QRO album review), and the rest is history (including his side-work in GAYNGS – see above).  S. Carey is best known as the drummer in Bon Iver (QRO photos), but Sean is a solo artist in his own right (QRO photos at a festival), and even if he doesn’t add much to the solo alt-folk game so many are playing these days, it’s still a popular game.

S. Carey
Basia Bulat, 2:25 PM, Yeti Stage

Canadian songstress Basia Bulat (QRO photos) brings her autoharp & Heart of My Own (QRO review) to Sasquatch! (QRO photos outdoors), after hitting up Europe (QRO photos at a festival in Europe).

Basia Bulat
Fitz & The Tantrums, 2:10 PM, Sasquatch! Stage

While acts like Sharon Jones & The Dap-Kings (see below) revive the soul sound, Los Angeles’ Fitz & The Tantrums are reinventing it with an indie-pop twist.

Fitz & The Tantrums
Talkdemonic, 1:20 PM, Yeti Stage

From avant-Portland comes the avant-instrumental outfit Talkdemonic (QRO photos at a festival).

The Drums, 1:05 PM, Sasquatch! Stage

The indie-pop of Brooklyn’s The Drums (QRO photos) mixes new wave, girl-group, Sweden, electro, and, above all, reverb, for something unique.

The Drums
Cotton Jones, 12:15 PM, Yeti Stage

Page France singer/creator Michael Nau began Cotton Jones (QRO photos) as a side-project, but it has since become the Maryland native’s full-time gig, alongside Whitney McGraw.

Cotton Jones
Smith Westerns, 12:00 PM, Sasquatch! Stage

Chicago’s Smith Westerns (QRO photos outdoors) have been getting some definite attention, but is that for their rock (QRO photos at a festival), or is it for their persona – none old enough to drink yet, and notorious for getting kicked out of clubs for breaking that rule…

The Smith Westerns


MONDAY, 5/30

Wilco, 9:30 PM, Sasquatch! Stage

For alt-country, there’s pretty much Wilco (QRO live review outdoors), and then everyone else.  The Chicago stars, led by singer/songwriter Jeff Tweedy, but also featuring bassist John Stirratt, multi-instrumentalist Pat Sansone (the two of whom also form The Autumn Defense – QRO interview), guitarist Nels Cline (QRO photos), drummer Glenn Kotche, pianist Mikael Jorgensen, and more (like “Jesus, Etc.” – QRO video), have played everywhere from Conan at home to “Far, Far Away” (QRO video).  They’ve also been excellent for so long (QRO live review outdoors) that their set lists are mammoth and still can’t cover everything (QRO live review) from the late greats like “I’m the Man Who Loves You” (QRO video) to more recent material off of Sky Blue Sky (QRO review) and Wilco (The Album) (QRO review) like “Hate It Here” (QRO video).

Major Lazer, 9:30 PM, Banana Shack Stage

The collaboration between DJ/producers Diplo and Switch made a serious breakthrough in 2009 as Major Lazer (QRO photos at a festival), with Guns Don’t Kill People…  Lazers Do, and followed it up last year with tour EP Lazers Never Die.

Major Lazer
Deerhunter, 9:00 PM, Bigfoot Stage

No one was more prolific in 2008 than Deerhunter’s singer/guitarist Bradford Cox (QRO live review), who not only put out the well-received Microcastle (QRO review), but also included a second disc of all-original bonus material, Weird Era Cont. (QRO review) – and oh, yeah, released a solo record (as Atlas Sound), Let the Blind Lead Those Who Can See But Cannot Feel (QRO review) that beat ‘em both.  And, after a hiatus & Atlas Sound’s Logos (QRO review), last year saw Deerhunter (QRO photos outdoors) reach even higher thanks to Halcyon Digest (QRO review).  Known for electric shows whether as the Sound (QRO live review) or with Deerhunter (QRO live review outdoors), Cox & Deerhunter (QRO photos outdoors) have been as prolific with the festivals (QRO photos at a festival).

The Decemberists, 8:00 PM, Sasquatch! Stage

Portland, Oregon’s The Decemberists (QRO photos at a festival) have been booming in recent years, from their showdown with Stephen Colbert on The Colbert Report (QRO Indie on Late Night TV) to 2009’s excellent magnum opus, The Hazards of Love (QRO review) and this year’s The King Is Dead (QRO review), making them now one of the biggest bands in indie-rock.

Oh, and the locals are yet another band playing Sasquatch! for the fourth time!

The Decemberists
!!!, 7:30 PM, Bigfoot Stage

Sacramento dance-punk act !!! (QRO photos) – pronounced ‘chk chk chk’ – were seriously blowing people away a few years ago (QRO live review) with Myth Takes (QRO review), then seemingly disappeared, but are back (QRO live review), and though last year’s Strange Weather, Isn’t It (QRO review) doesn’t stand out in today’s saturated dance-punk scene, the band still knows how to liven it up live (QRO live review outdoors).

Best Coast, 6:45 PM, Yeti Stage

Los Angeles’ Best Coast (QRO live review) is a practical veteran at the still-new garage-scene, but a goodie, combining surf, garage, indie, and pop for a sound (QRO photos) that’s sure to be sweet coming from frontwoman Bethany Cosentino (QRO live review) outdoors (QRO photos outdoors).

Best Coast
Rodrigo y Gabriela, 6:35 PM, Sasquatch! Stage

Rodrigo Sanchez y Gabriela Quintero (why are there no male-female duos with the woman’s name first?…) mix Mexican song stylings with an Irish troubadour nature.

Rodrido y Gabriela
Surfer Blood, 6:20 PM, Bigfoot Stage

Shooting up very quickly in indie-circles has been West Palm Beach’s Surfer Blood (QRO live review), who were gaining tons of fans (QRO photos of a packed house) long before acclaimed debut Astro Coast (QRO review) finally hit the shelves (or whatever you say in today’s digital age…).  Surfer Blood (QRO photos at a festival) then signed to Warner Brothers, so at least one major label is hoping that they the first wave of a new ‘South Florida Invasion’ (QRO photos at home).  However, QRO called them way back when (QRO photos at a festival), before they played a million-and-one festivals (QRO photos outdoors at a festival)…

Surfer Blood
Foster the People, 5:40 PM, Yeti Stage

Los Angeles’ Foster the People (QRO photos at a festival) may feel like a wanna-be Passion Pit (QRO album review) in their electro-pop, but it’s a wanna-be that you can dance to.

Foster the People
Sharon Jones & The Dap-Kings, 5:10 PM, Sasquatch! Stage

Sharon Jones & The Dap-Kings (QRO photos outdoors) have been reviving and reinventing the sixties soul, Stax Records sound, most recently with 2007’s 100 Days, 100 Nights (QRO review) and last year’s I Learned the Hard Way (QRO review), not to mention on TV and in film (QRO soundtrack review), but live they take it to a whole ‘nother level, as The Dap-Kings lay it down and Ms. Jones burns it down (QRO photos at a festival).

Sharon Jones & The Dap-Kings
Macklemore & Ryan Lewis, 5:10 PM, Bigfoot Stage

With their new Wing$, Seattle’s Macklemore & Ryan Lewis take on the holy grail of hip-hop, Air Jordan sneakers, making them ultra-revolutionaries in rap.

Macklemore & Ryan Lewis
White Denim, 4:35 PM, Yeti Stage

Out of the Austin psychedelic rock scene comes White Denim (QRO live review at home in Austin), but they’re more accessible than most psych-rock, if also correspondingly less inspired (QRO photos at a festival).

White Denim
Stornoway, 4:05 PM, Bigfoot Stage

The Oxford quartet (QRO spotlight on) may look young and fresh but the venerable 4AD label knew there was depth to Stornoway’s bright eyes when they offered a contract to join indie music’s elite.  Their folk pop debut album, Beachcomber’s Windowsill, reveals insights and ingenuity unusual for novices (QRO interview).  Since the release of their LP in the spring of 2010, the Brits (QRO live review) have been touring tirelessly around the globe and back again.  After traveling to Australia & more with Laneway Festival (QRO Down Under Festival Guide), Stornoway have a busy summer festival schedule this summer (QRO photos at a festival), including returning to Glastonbury for the third year in a row (QRO U.K. Festival Guide).

Guided by Voices, 3:50 PM, Sasquatch! Stage

Among the influential alternative music acts of the nineties was Dayton, Ohio’s Guided By Voices (QRO photos).  Centered on the ultra-prolific Robert Pollard (QRO album review), GBV drew on nearly every rock sound, as well as being one of the pioneers of today’s lo-fi and neo-garage sounds.  Late last year, Pollard revived the retired GBV moniker and reunited with the original, 1993-1996 ‘classic’ line-up for label Matador Records’ 21st anniversary bash in Las Vegas – and have kept it going since then.

Guided by Voices
Black Mountain, 3:00 PM, Bigfoot Stage

Vancouver’s Black Mountain (QRO photos) are a hard, heavy rock band, who, despite hard, heavy records like In the Future (QRO review) and Wilderness Heart, move in the indie-sphere for some reason.

Black Mountain
Chromeo, 2:45 PM, Sasquatch! Stage

There are combos and then there are combos: Montreal’s Chromeo (QRO live review) are the electrofunk duo of Dave 1 (David Macklovitch) and P-Thugg (Patrick Gemayel) has been best friends since childhood, billing themselves as, “The only successful Arab/Jewish collaboration since the beginning of time” (but what is their stance on Québécois independence?…).  And their electronica works outdoors (QRO photos outdoors), day or night.

Noah & The Whale, 2:00 PM, Bigfoot Stage

Noah & The Whale (QRO live review) have had a curious and unique trajectory.  They came out of the same London alt-folk scene as Mumford & Sons (QRO live review) and Laura Marling (QRO live review); indeed, the latter contributed to their middling debut, Peaceful, the World Lays Me Down (QRO review).  Her split with not just the band (QRO photos) but singer/ex Charlie Fink brought break-up beauty & weight to the much better The First Days of Spring (QRO review).  And after Spring brought serious success for the band (QRO photos at a festival), what did they do?  They tapped into seventies rock and upbeat spirits for this year’s Last Night On Earth (QRO review).  The most recent Noah (QRO photos) will naturally be the most heavily featured at Sasquatch!, but all sides will be featured.

Noah & The Whale
Old 97’s, 1:40 PM, Sasquatch! Stage

Old 97’s helped forget the alt-country sound-scene in the nineties alongside the likes of The Drive-By Truckers (QRO album review) and proto-Wilco (see above) Uncle Tupelo, and have just kept on truckin’ ever since, up to nine albums with last year’s The Grand Theatre, Volume One.

Old 97's
Twin Shadow, 1:00 PM, Bigfoot Stage

With one of the best debut album of 2010, Forget, produced by Chris Taylor of Grizzly Bear (QRO live review), George Lewis Jr. (a.k.a. Twin Shadow – QRO photos) shot up on the hype meter.  Turns out, the ‘80s new wave-influenced pop of the Dominican Republic born musician actually lived up to its reputation. Sophisticated melodies and catchy hooks abound, the tracks of Forget easily transitioned from haunting poetics to infectious dance numbers.

Twin Shadow
Young the Giant, 12:35 PM, Sasquatch! Stage

These Irvine natives toiled for years as The Jakes, but when they changed their name to Young the Giant (QRO photos at a festival), things finally took off, with their self-(new) titled album & TV performances earlier this year.

Young the Giant
Wavves, 11:30 AM, Sasquatch! Stage

Redemption?  After WAVVES singer/guitarist Nathan Williams (QRO photos at a festival) had a very public breakdown, on stage last year at Barcelona’s Primavera Festival (later blaming technical problems, and ‘alcohol addiction’ – isn’t that what disgraced Rep./To Catch a Predator favorite Mark Foley said?…), the San Diego act cancelled their whole European tour.  However, since then Williams got back on the road (QRO photos at a festival), recruited the backing band of the late Jay Reatard (QRO photos), put on the much-praised King of the Beach (QRO review).  And he seems to have cut down on imitating Pauly Shore…



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