Photos By JASON E KAPLAN //
by Jason E Kaplan
It's starting to feel like a tradition for me to end summer by spending a couple of days at Bumbershoot in Seattle. Always heavy on Northwest acts, this year's festival was seemed especially stacked with Seattle bands. Surprisingly, I could only find one Oregon artist -- Portland band Radiation City. Founded in 2010, Radiation City makes a kind of dreamy techno pop that is instantly enjoyable.
In the past I had a surprise discovery coming upon San Fermin whose eclectic sound stood out from the indy crowd. This year, my favorite find was New Jersey singer - songwriter Donna Missal who reminded me of both St. Vincent with a little Bonnie Raitt mixed in. A very powerful and distinctive voice. Another high-point of the day was seeing Reggie Watts who has a unique way of mixing satire and sincerity. After that I spent a little time with Seattle's own Rabbit Wilde -- a folky and pleasant sound. Then for something completely different it was off for a little electronica with Marshmallow. Though I'd never heard of him (and still haven't seen his face) Key Arena was filled with thousands of young ravers who expressed an avid appreciation for the masked DJ.
Then it was back into the daylight where I found The Hinds -- an all-girl group from Madrid, Spain. They made catchy pop-rock that would sound at home on commercial radio or at a college station.
The night ended with some Texas Prog by Explosions in the Sky.