The always so popular Fitz and the Tantrums were here in June to strut their stuff at Showbox SoDo. Look for the Los Angeles group to open the U.S. Open tennis tournament on August 25th – this should be televised! All photos by Dan Rogers:
Ages and Ages, a Portland, Oregon-based octet (wow, huge band!), played the Tractor in June. Photographer Tino Tran captured some lovely moments of that show! The folk-tinged band heads further up North again on August 21st for a date at Bellingham’s Wild Buffalo.
Hip Hop musician A$AP, from New York, had the large audience rapping along with him. The crowd was clearly full of fans, who really did know all the words of his work. It was fun to experience. After his set, I headed to the indoor (and air-conditioned) environs of Barboza, where I saw Duke Evers and Alicia Amiri. Duke Evers, a Seattle band whom I knew nothing about before the festival but listened to via CHBP’s site, quickly made its way on to my list of bands I had to see. The duo entertained with a neat set punctuated by singer/guitarist’s Josh Starkel’s expressive presence. Right after Duke Evers was Alicia Amiri, whose versatile voice (her other project, Nightmare Fortress, is goth synth – and excellent also) worked well with the solid and enjoyable songs.
Alicia Amiri – all photos by Dagmar
One of the big name acts I wanted to see at Sasquatch Festival’s second day (which got cancelled), was New Order. The other was Kraftwerk. I honestly didn’t think I would ever get to see New Order live. I don’t know when they last played here. But there Seattle was, getting lucky with a headlining New Order date on July 6th.
The British band had a difficult task at hand: selecting songs for its set list. With so many great albums, so many great songs, where would they start? In a moving manner, they opened with “Elegia,” the group’s tribute to singer Ian Curtis of Joy Division. Bear with me if I am telling you something you already know, but New Order formed out of Joy Division, so that’s the connection. Even if you didn’t know this, “Elegia,” off Low-Life (an album I will always associate with my sister, who played it very often) is a beautiful, haunting piece of music. It was also an unusual choice to begin with as an instrumental for a band whose singer, Bernard Sumner, is instantly recognizable.
Along with a truly smashing and effective (never distracting) light show, New Order performed a critical mass of songs such as “Regret,” “Bizarre Love Triangle,” “Blue Monday,” “Tempation,” (which went back to their first album, Movement) “The Perfect Kiss,”The Perfect Kiss” (which might be my favorite New Order song, by the way). A particularly welcome surprise was new song “Plastic,” which sounded awesome – proving there’s still so much more in this band. To close out the show New Order played three Joy Division songs, including “Transmission” and “Love Will Tear Us Apart,” in a move that showed a respect for and love of towering beginnings and accomplishments.
Kate Tucker and the Sons of Sweden made a recent stop at the Tractor Tavern in Ballard during the first leg of their US tour. In addition to Tucker on vocals and guitars, SOS members include Wes Chandler (guitar), Ethan Place (drums), Matthew Thompson (bass) and Nic Danielson (keys). Here’s a great video of “Best Friends’ Love” from their album The Shape The Color The Feel, released earlier this year. Tucker was born in Seattle and now lives in Nashville.