CRSSD unveils Phase 2 of Fall 2018 lineup

CRSSD Festival - Fall 2018 lineup - Phase 2

CRSSD Festival //
Waterfront Park – San Diego
September 29th-30th, 2018 //

Less than two months after releasing the first phase of its Fall 2018 roster, CRSSD has added even more artists to the bill now.

UK ambient/post-dubstep two-piece Mount Kimbie, California-based electronic producer Big Wild, Chicago DJ/production duo Louis the Child and 23-year-old singer-songwriter Kiiara all lead the two-day music festival’s Phase 2 lineup, while The Hacker, LEFTWING & KODY, Mija, Oliver, Will Clarke and Dateless are also among its new additions this September.

CRSSD Fall 2018 - Phase 2 lineup

CRSSD’s eighth edition will be headlined by British DJ/record producer Duke Dumont, who we saw close out last year’s inaugural Skyline festival (read our review here), and Canada’s Bob Moses, with Marian Hill, Sofi Tukker, Flight Facilities, Hayden James, PNAU, Autograf, Elderbrook, shallou, Claptone and more scheduled to perform in San Diego.

See the poster above for the entire Fall 2018 lineup. The bi-annual, 21-and-over event has GA tickets available here for $145 before they increase to $155.

CRSSD enlists Duke Dumont, Bob Moses to headline Fall 2018 lineup with Marian Hill, Sofi Tukker & more

CRSSD Festival - Fall 2018 lineup

CRSSD Festival //
Waterfront Park – San Diego
September 29th-30th, 2018 //

Since its official debut in 2015, CRSSD has found a home at San Diego’s scenic Waterfront Park and become a mainstay across Southern California’s ever-expanding live music landscape.

California-based event promoter FNGRS CRSSD has organized seven editions of the bi-annual music festival in that time, partnering with Goldenvoice early on, and has already announced its eighth installment almost four months after Empire of the Sun and Gorgon City topped the fest’s Spring 2018 lineup.

Headlining this time around will be British DJ/producer Duke Dumont, who we saw close out last year’s inaugural Skyline festival (read our review here), and Canadian electronic duo Bob Moses. This won’t be either’s first time performing at CRSSD, with one previously serving as a headliner (Duke Dumont) and the other as an undercard act (Bob Moses).

UPDATE (August 9th): Organizers have unveiled Phase 2 of the Fall 2018 lineup, with Mount Kimbie, Big Wild, Louis the Child, Kiiara and more joining the party this September.

Though CRSSD’s rosters have often leaned in the electronic direction and continue to as evidenced by this latest one, there was a time when it strayed off course and gave rock a chance, booking The Flaming Lips and TV on the Radio surprisingly enough.

Meanwhile, the two-day festival’s Fall 2018 bill also boasts Marian Hill, Sofi Tukker, Flight Facilities, Hayden James, PNAU, Autograf, Elderbrook, shallou, Claptone, Dusky, Anti-Up, Thomas Jack, AC Slater B2B Jack Beats, Darius (Live), Detlef, Cut Snake B2B Ardalan, Nina Kraviz, John Digweed and more.

See the poster above for the rest of the lineup. Advanced tickets for the 21-and-over event will be available here starting Tuesday, July 3rd at Noon PT.

CRSSD Festival 2016

Treasure Island Music Festival releases 2016 lineup with headliners Sigur Rós, Ice Cube

Treasure Island Music Festival 2016 lineup

Treasure Island Music Festival //
Treasure Island – San Francisco
October 15th-16th, 2016 //

Treasure Island Music Festival is back for its 10th anniversary this fall, and after months of speculation, we now know who will be performing in 2016.

Headlining the two-day event in mid-October will be Icelandic post-rock outfit Sigur Rós and legendary rapper Ice Cube, who has been making the rounds on the festival circuit this year. The rest of the TIMF bill leans heavily on electronic music — as just another sign of times — with English singer-songwriter James Blake leading the way after the release of his critically acclaimed LP The Colour in Anything last month.

Other acts on the 2016 TIMF lineup worth noting include Canadian electronic duo Purity Ring, Chinese-American electronic musician ZHU, Oxford indie-rock quartet Glass Animals, English deep-house DJ Duke Dumont, slacker-rock king Mac DeMarco, 23-year-old emcee Young Thug, Australian electronic duo Flight Facilities, North Carolina indie-pop duo Sylvan Esso, French singer-songwriter Héloïse Letissier’s band Christine and the Queens, UK grime ambassador Stormzy, Texas chillwave group Neon Indian, Jack Tatum’s dream-pop quintet Wild Nothing and the experimental sounds of Tom Krell’s How to Dress Well.

The Bay Area music scene will also be well-represented at TIMF in 2016 with Scott Hansen’s ambient-techno project Tycho, black-metal enthusiasts Deafheaven and Oakland’s Day Wave all set to perform.

Tickets go on sale this Thursday, June 16th starting at 10 a.m. and include two-day GA passes for an early-bird price of $159.50 (before increasing to $179.50) as well as two-day VIP passes for $315. All GA and VIP tickets will include a complimentary shuttle to and from the festival at Bill Graham Civic Auditorium in SF.

Ready to hit the island this October? Relive last year’s fest with our 20 favorite moments here.

Treasure Island Music Festival 2015

Splash House shares 2016 lineup for both weekends

Splash House

Splash House //
The Saguaro & The Riviera – Palm Springs, CA
June 10th-12th & August 12th-14th, 2016 //

Back for its fourth year this summer, Splash House will once again take place over a pair of weekends in the desert with a dance-focused lineup that should catch the attention of EDM fans throughout California and all along the West Coast.

The boutique music festival that’s more or less one giant pool party in Palm Springs this June and August will feature sets from headliners ODESZA (DJ set) and Gorgon City (DJ set), along with Guy Gerber, Justin Martin, Snakehips, Hudson Mohawke and many more at The Saguaro and The Riviera. See the artist lineups for each weekend below.

JUNE LINEUP

Splash House 2016 - June lineup

AUGUST LINEUP

Splash House 2016 - August lineup

For those who won’t get their fill just by catching all the action poolside, Splash House will also host after-parties at the Palm Springs Air Museum, where Flight Facilities, RÜFÜS DU SOL, Justin Jay & Friends and Claptone are scheduled to perform.

Tickets for the 21-and-over event start at $120. The Riviera has travel packages starting at $200 per person with weekend tickets and hotel accommodations included. Two-night passes for the festival’s after-parties will be sold separately and start at $30.

The 25 best live music acts of 2015

Best Live Acts of 2015

Around this time last year, we shared our 25 favorite live performers of 2014 after spending the past 12 months covering many excellent bands, musicians and DJs. So, with 2015 almost in the books, we thought we would give the same exercise another try, except this year, we made the call to exclude any artists we named in 2014. What fun would it really be to list them two years in a row anyway?

In the end, it wasn’t an easy task whittling down our list to 25, but some tough decisions had to be made. Those who didn’t make the cut but still deserve to be mentioned here include the following artists and bands (in alphabetical order) who we either covered at their own show and/or at a music festival this year:

AlunaGeorge, Ariel Pink, BADBADNOTGOOD, Bad Religion, Battles, Beirut, Belle and Sebastian, Big Grams, Billy Idol, Black Lips, The Black Keys, Blonde Redhead, BØRNS, BROODS, Built to Spill, Catfish and the Bottlemen, Chet Faker, Chromeo, City and Colour, Classixx, Cold War Kids, Dâm-Funk, Damien Rice, Death Cab for Cutie, Dengue Fever, Django Django, Dr. Dog, Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros, Failure, The Flaming Lips, Flight Facilities, Goldroom, Glen Hansard, The Glitch Mob, Gorgon City, Holly Herndon, Interpol, Israel Nash, James Bay, Jeff Tweedy, Jenny Lewis, The Jesus and Mary Chain, JMSN, Jose Gonzalez, Jurassic 5, Kanye West, Kindness, King Tuff, Marina and the Diamonds, Miami Horror, Milky Chance, Modest Mouse, Morrissey, MS MR, Les Sins, Lotus, Natalie Prass, Neon Indian, ODESZA, Of Montreal, Oneohtrix Point Never, Panda Bear, Penguin Prison, Phantogram, Portugal. The Man, Preservation Hall Jazz Band, Purity Ring, Ratatat, Royal Blood, San Fermin, Shlohmo, Slow Magic, SOHN, St. Paul and The Broken Bones, STRFKR, Surfer Blood, Talib Kweli, Tame Impala, Tennis, Toro y Moi, Tycho, Umphrey’s McGee, Unknown Mortal Orchestra, Vintage Trouble, Vulfpeck, Widespread Panic, YACHT.

Now, without further ado, The Bam Team presents our 25 favorite live performers of 2015.

The Bam Team’s 5 Favorite Shows, Albums & Songs of 2015

Listen to The Bam Team’s favorite songs of 2015:


Best Live Music Acts of 2015 #25 - Lord Huron

25. Lord Huron

The audience reacted with just as much enthusiasm during classic Lord Huron tunes as they did in hearing brand-new material, especially during fan favorites like “She Lit a Fire” and back-to-back rockabilly-tinged jams “The World Ender” and “Fool for Love”. At this point, the crowd had not only warmed up to Lord Huron’s infectious stage presence, but also gave into their buoyant vibes as mini dance parties broke out throughout the venue. -Molly Kish, photo by Steve Carlson


Best Live Music Acts of 2015 #24 - Puscifer

24. Puscifer

Maynard James Keenan and friends have established themselves as not just a group of musicians who play songs on stage, but rather an assemblage of entertainers that provide their viewers and fans with something they may not have ever seen before — a true experience. Paying homage to the likes of Alice Cooper, Pink Floyd and the glory days of the rock opera, Puscifer have a very special way of combining their music with a stage show that offers so much more than just music. -Scotland Miller, photo by Mike Rosati


Best Live Music Acts of 2015 #23 - Viet Cong

23. Viet Cong

Once the appetizer had been digested, Viet Cong were taking the stage and beginning a theme of quirky banter that eased the crowd into the blistering set as opposed to bombardment. Within the first few chords, it was evident that continued time on the road found the band at the peak of perfection. -Kevin Quandt, photo by Diana Cordero


Best Live Music Acts of 2015 #22 - Kate Tempest

22. Kate Tempest

This decade will likely be known for the death of “genre,” the end of how groups have been contained into categories like R&B or rap since the birth of record labels. And with dance music on the rise, digitized conventions are creeping into pop, rap and indie music on the regular. With music more accessible than ever and for free, listeners are willing to experiment with their auditory material — and amalgamation is the natural result. Tempest represents this change as much or more than anyone as we enter the smack-dab middle of this decade. And that includes Kanye West, Sylvan Esso or Run the Jewels. -Mike Frash, photo by James Nagel


Best Live Music Acts of 2015 #21 - Deerhunter

21. Deerhunter

Deerhunter’s Bradford Cox talked about how he decided on the way over to the island that he wouldn’t play many songs, how he took ayahuasca on Saturday night in LA and he was surprised at how reserved the TIMF audience was. He said we were “polite like the Japanese.” Bradford, that’s what we call “respect” — and you’ve earned it. -Mike Frash, photo by Marc Fong


Best Live Music Acts of 2015 #20 - Faith No More

20. Faith No More

It can be hard to know what to expect from a crew like Faith No More and their eccentric, yet prolific members. The entire stage was dressed in white, from the curtains to the amplifiers to the mic stands. Lining the entire length of the stage and any flat surface that would support them were thousands of dollars worth of beautiful, fresh flowers. The abundance of purples and pinks, reds and yellows created a very comfortable and soothing, yet incredibly eerie feeling as to what was about to happen next. Once the setup was complete and the lights dropped, the crowd was let in to the stark contrast that is the weird world of Faith No More. -Scotland Miller, photo by Greg Ramar


Best Live Music Acts of 2015 #19 - Sufjan Stevens

19. Sufjan Stevens

Stevens spoke of the need for community in the throes of grief, and the audience ably did their part to help him through this very public grieving process. At the end of the main set, a young woman crashed the stage to offer a bemused Sufjan something (a hug? words of love and encouragement?), and it seemed wholly appropriate, as if the audience needed in some small way to collectively reach out to the man after he bared his soul so openly. -Steve Carlson, photo by Steve Carlson


Best Live Music Acts of 2015 #18 - Allen Stone

18. Allen Stone

In many ways, Stone’s ideological stance on technology shapes not only his set as a performer but also his fan base. Watching an Allen Stone show, one can feel certain that all pretenses will be left at the door and those surrounding you will be committing their full attention to the music. Midway through Stone’s set, the venue was completely under his charismatic spell. The audience actively followed the Seattle-born frontman’s lead as he prompted a group participation “2-step” and rolled through crowd favorites from his self-titled LP and latest album Radius. -Molly Kish, photo by Tom Dellinger


Best Live Music Acts of 2015 #17 - The Kills

17. The Kills

Mosshart, tall and slender, strutted her way through just about all of it, displaying a bravado that exudes both sex and confidence, while Hince handled his axe like a bona fide rock star, eventually playing some slide guitar during the gritty, blues-infused track “Pots and Pans” that got the crowd roaring after it was over. After all, it’s that blues/garage-rock overlap, along with the chemistry exhibited between Mosshart and Hince onstage, that makes The Kills such a captivating rock ‘n’ roll act to see live these days. -Josh Herwitt, photo by Josh Herwitt


Best Live Music Acts of 2015 #16 - The Chemical Brothers

16. The Chemical Brothers

Directly following their dramatic entrance to a recording of Junior Parker’s epic “Tomorrow Never Knows”, the duo kicked off their career-spanning set with crowd favorite “Hey Boy, Hey Girl” from 1999’s Surrender. They launched into a full-blown frenzy from that moment on, and the UK dance legends went hard (no pun intended) throughout the rest of their two-hour performance, debuting live remixes of new material from their 2015 release Born in the Echoes while interspersing nostalgia-inducing EDM classics off their seven previous albums. -Molly Kish, photo by Justin Yee


Best Live Music Acts of 2015 #15 - Eagles of Death Metal

15. Eagles of Death Metal

EODM have the perfect style as a rock band, one that takes itself just seriously enough. As a whole, they are a hard, fast and tightly-wound production, with their silly lyrics and even sillier frontman bringing a perfect balance to what you want to see at a rock show. Closing with “Speaking in Tongues”, EODM walked off the stage at the Great American Music Hall knowing that they had accomplished what they came to do — to prove that rock ain’t dead. -Brett Ruffenach, photo by Mike Rosati


Best Live Music Acts of 2015 #14 - Florence + the Machine

14. Florence + the Machine

Welch lapped around the inside ring of the bowl, stopping briefly at the sound stage. What a cool moment. -James Nagel, photo by James Nagel


Best Live Music Acts of 2015 #13 - Sturgill Simpson

13. Sturgill Simpson

Simpson has stage presence, that is without a doubt. The conviction of his voice bolsters his words as he describes a life of highs and lows, trials and tribulations. This was evident on renditions of songs like “Turtles All the Way Down”. If there is a song to capture your attention and convince you of Simpson’s talents as a songwriter, this is one of them. Just like that of his predecessors, he writes music that goes against the grain of popular country music. It may be defined as “outlaw country,” but I personally feel it is music that resonates with a wider audience than that of its counterparts. -Kory Thibeault, photo by Kory Thibeault


Best Live Music Acts of 2015 #12 - alt-j

12. alt-J

The 2012 Mercury Prize winners echoed a semblance to that of Sigur Rós or Volcano Choir, leaving audience members entranced in a near-altered state while observing the foursome. The biggest fan responses erupted during the band’s singalong favorites “Breezeblocks”, “Fitzpleasure” and their token cover of Bill Withers’ “Lovely Day”. -Molly Kish, photo by Mike Rosati


Best Live Music Acts of 2015 #11 - Hot Chip

11. Hot Chip

In recent years, only ever getting the chance to see the outfit in stripped-down DJ sets or as part of side projects/collaborations, the afternoon crowd full of die-hard, nu-disco fans were not disappointed as the UK dance veterans set the polo fields ablaze. Refraining from any slow builders, Hot Chip performed an hour-long set of career-spanning bangers, keeping the crowd moving with hit after hit, that seamlessly blended into one another. The set procured one of the most viral dance party moments of the festival, with the audience spiraling into a collective bliss as it came to a close. -Molly Kish, photo by Josh Herwitt


Best Live Music Acts of 2015 #10 - Dan Deacon

10. Dan Deacon

One of the toughest things to do in the world of electronic music is to sound organic, to imbue a sense of heart into the digitized nature of ones and zeroes. The Baltimore native accomplishes this through his hilarious and improvisational free-form, stand-up comedy, which thrives on wandering non sequiturs. And he mirrors this by adapting his insane-train of sound to meet and exceed the energy in the room. The “America” suite finished off the show with an extended doom metal quality that gave a sense that no aesthetic boundaries can contain Deacon’s sense of musical exploration. -Mike Frash, photo by Pedro Paredes


Best Live Music Acts of 2015 #9 - FKA twigs

9. FKA twigs

British singer-songwriter Tahliah Debrett Barnett, better known as FKA twigs, has been all the rage lately after performing at Coachella in April, and she closed out FYF in style, donning an elaborate burgundy- and gold-colored robe for her Sunday night set. Just the week before, the 27-year-old fiancée of actor/musician Robert Pattinson released her brand-new EP M3LL155X, and with it receiving high marks from a number of music outlets, there were quite a few fans who stuck around after 11:30 p.m. on a “school night” to watch her perform some of them, including the opening track “Figure 8”, “In Time” and “Glass & Patron”. FKA twigs might be one of the most compelling live acts out there right now, and after scheduling Purity Ring to close out The Lawn the night before, FYF seemed to make a point of letting women rule that stage in the late-night hours this year. -Josh Herwitt, photo by Josh Herwitt


Best Live Music Acts of 2015 #8 - Empire of the Sun

8. Empire of the Sun

As Steele belted out “Alive”, the hit single off the band’s sophomore studio album Ice on the Dune, to close things out, he brought the audience to a transcendent place of exhilaration. Crowd members embraced and danced amongst a like-minded family of people lost in the moment, even if it involved intergalactic creatures dancing in colored smoke and a crowned Emperor playing without his bandmate on stage. EOTS shows are a special kind of magic that regardless of the material’s absurd nature, translate into an experience unlike anything else. -Molly Kish, photo by Steve Carlson


Best Live Music Acts of 2015 #7 - My Morning Jacket

7. My Morning Jacket

Though it was more than understandable to see the band play a large majority of The Waterfall for its first performance at the Santa Barbara Bowl in almost four years, there were plenty of other deep cuts mixed in over the next two hours, from “Bermuda Highway” to “Mahgeetah” to “Touch Me I’m Going to Scream Pt. 2”. After all, it’s no secret that My Morning Jacket have always been good to their most loyal and dedicated fans, and in once again taking song requests as part of their “Spontaneous Curation Series,” they made sure to dig up many of the classics from their seminal album Z, including “Wordless Chorus” and “Off the Record” one after the other in the middle of a loaded, four-song encore. -Josh Herwitt, photo by Josh Herwitt


Best Live Music Acts of 2015 #6 - Jamie xx

6. Jamie xx

Throughout his tour, Smith has refused to compromise his individual style for the sake of appeasing either extreme of his now commercially hybrid audience. Whereas those familiar with his early XL Records mixtapes were satiated by his intermingling of Gil Scott-Heron and Idris Muhammad samples between hits, his newfound post-In Colour fans experienced equally breathtaking moments with the crowd hitting peak energy levels during the encore chorus of “Loud Places” amidst the glow of a warped-speed, neon-green strobe light. Other notable moments included the near-religious choral drop of “Gosh” that escalated the packed house to spiritual levels of enthusiasm, bathed in the glowing sparkle of Smith’s staggeringly iridescent ceiling to floor disco ball and stage lights. -Molly Kish, photo by James Nagel


Best Live Music Acts of 2015 #5 - Elton John

5. Elton John

The star-spangled legend sat at his majestic piano as the sun went down on Sunday and moved the crowd with his brilliant playing. The adoring audience hung on every word and joined in singing his most popular hits. Walking off stage quickly after his last song, the audience demanded more and Elton happily obliged. With rumors of Lion King songs being played at past performances, some doting fans wanted a second encore to the tune of “Circle of Life”. While he didn’t indulge the Lion King fans, his stellar performance was a perfect ending to an amazing weekend at Outside Lands, leaving everyone’s festival tank full of love. -Nik Crossman, photo by James Nagel


Best Live Music Acts of 2015 #4 - Father John Misty

4. Father John Misty

Father John (Sassypants) Misty has his festival game on point, and he has progressed his I Love You, Honeybear songs into epic plateaus since premiering them in the Santa Cruz mountains last February. He spewed banter like an Stephen Colbert-esque contrarian, saying, “Look at these suckers with their hair blowing all over the place.” And as he approached the mic for more improv-snark later on, Tillman paused to say, “Sorry, I have nothing to say. Ha.” FJM was speechless for once, but granted, it might have been set up for “Bored in the USA”, a song that should be considered an American classic at this point. -Mike Frash, photo by Pedro Paredes


Best Live Music Acts of 2015 #3 - Kendrick Lamar

3. Kendrick Lamar

As Kendrick Lamar’s incredible performance began to wrap up with his newest single “Alright”, a group of fans in the crowd proceeded to lift someone up in a wheelchair, who, if I recall correctly, was the same guy who had his photo famously taken at Outside Lands in 2013. Kendrick took notice and called him out — his sense of sincere appreciation for a place like the Bay Area was written all over his face. -Brett Ruffenach, photo by Marc Fong


Best Live Music Acts of 2015 #2 - Caribou

2. Caribou

Described by fellow musician Dan Deacon as “one of the most brilliant acts touring right now” just before their set, Caribou lived up to the hype. Starting with “Our Love”, the four-piece band led by Dan Snaith perfectly set the stage for the next hour — a series of tightly wound compositions that, as the song progresses, expand in rhythmic complexity before reaching a climax that will get even the most tired Sunday afternoon crowd moving. Heavily augmenting its live performances from its studio recordings, the band’s live rendition of “Jamelia” in particular was a highlight of the set. Caribou is a band not to be missed. -Brett Ruffenach, photo by Justin Yee


Best Live Music Acts of 2015 - D'Angelo & The Vanguard #1

1. D’Angelo & The Vanguard

One of the most anticipated sets of the entire weekend was none other than D’Angelo’s — and for good reason. The R&B/neo-soul singer-songwriter hadn’t put out an album in 14 years until he suddenly dropped his 2014 masterpiece Black Messiah last December, so you knew that getting the rare opportunity to see Michael Eugene Archer work a crowd at FYF would be something special. Sounding more like a youthful James Brown than a wannabe Prince (we still don’t totally understand where those comparisons are coming from), D’Angelo and his eight-piece backing band The Vanguard took the audience for a ride as they doled out new and old hits. -Josh Herwitt, photo by Josh Herwitt

Outside Lands 2015 - Dan Deacon

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CRSSD makes a big splash in debut as 2015 festival season heats up

CRSSD FestivalBy Josh Herwitt //

CRSSD Festival //
Waterfront Park – San Diego
March 14th-15th, 2015 //

Music festivals rarely ever run smoothly in their inaugural year. Whether they are poorly timed, disorganized or just not well thought-out, first-time festivals often have their fair share of problems.

But Southern California-based event promoters Goldenvoice and FNGRS CRSSD are quickly changing the game after putting on a nearly flawless first edition of CRSSD Festival at San Diego’s Waterfront Park last weekend.

Bridging the gap between the EDM and alternative electronic worlds much like HARD Events founder and CEO Gary Richards has done with his own festival series, the two-day, 21-and-over event initially caught fans’ eyes with electro-rock bands like Empire of the Sun and Chromeo topping an impressive, dance-oriented bill that also included ODESZA, Flight Facilities, Hot Natured, Classixx, Maceo Plex, Justin Martin, Lee Burridge and Pete Tong.

Then, a month later, CRSSD organizers drew even more attention to the festival when they announced Phase II of the lineup, adding James Murphy, Damian Lazarus & The Ancient Moons and Trippy Turtle to an already stacked list of performers.

And with temperatures hitting the high 80’s on both Saturday and Sunday, CRSSD Festival couldn’t have served as a better warm-up (no pun intended) for Coachella, which, by the way, is only three weeks away.

Here are our awards from the first-ever CRSSD Festival.


CRSSD Festival - Empire of the Sun

Most Epic Set: Empire of the Sun

The Aussie glam-pop giant has been headlining festivals for a while now and continues to do so in epic fashion. Empire of the Sun’s live performance is as much of a spectacle as it is a psychedelic dance party, and when they intertwine the two so fluidly as they did to close out the first day of festivities at CRSSD, they’re able to leave lasting memories for both new and old fans.


CRSSD Festival - Chromeo

Biggest Dance Party: Chromeo

These two childhood friends from Montreal have been igniting dance parties all over the world since dropping their 2004 debut She’s in Control, and while their synthpop sound hasn’t necessarily evolved leaps and bounds over the last decade, they still know how to get a crowd moving, whatever the occasion may be. With the weekend winding down, you could find plenty of festivalgoers all over the grounds grooving to Chromeo’s signature brand of disco funk. We even saw people dancing on their way to the porta potties!


CRSSD Festival - Classixx

Most Uplifting Set: Classixx

As we found out at Treasure Island Music Festival last fall, LA electronic duo Classixx have come a long way since their early days remixing artists like Phoenix, Mayer Hawthorne and Holy Ghost! Scheduled to play the always-important post-sunset set on the Ocean View Live stage, they stepped up to the challenge and delivered one of the most awe-inspiring shows of the weekend. With their wide range of influences, the sky — especially when it’s tinged orange, red and blue — appears to be the limit for these two beatmakers.


CRSSD Festival - Lido

Biggest Surprise: Lido

Quite frankly, we didn’t know anything about Norwegian producer Lido (aka 22-year-old Peder Losnegård) prior to his 4:30 p.m. set on Sunday. Well, maybe we should have. After watching him drop remixes of Bill Withers, The Weeknd and alt-j all while maneuvering between keyboards, electronic drums and a variety of programming equipment, we were thoroughly impressed with this young stud’s skills. Oh, and his pipes aren’t shabby either.


CRSSD Festival - ODESZA

Best Stage Visuals: ODESZA

The Seattle production duo has been on fire of late, and its Sunday night set was easily one of the most anticipated of the weekend thanks to the release of its second full-length album In Return this past September. While “Say My Name” has taken the airwaves by storm over the last few months, it was their stage visuals that really stood out. Artistic and abstract at the same time, you couldn’t help but stare at the huge LED screen directly behind Harrison Mills and Clayton Knight as they worked their magic on us.


CRSSD Festival - Robert DeLong

Most Enthusiastic Performance: Robert DeLong

Is there a more entertaining live performer in dance music right now than Robert DeLong? Whether he’s singing or banging away ferociously on the drums (his stage setup includes both acoustic and electronic), the 29-year-old Washington state native is one of the most animated acts in electronic music. Fusing house, moombahton and a handful of other EDM sub-genres into his Sunday afternoon slot, he showed an enthusiasm unparalleled to any other artist on the CRSSD lineup.


CRSSD Festival - Flight Facilities

Best Guest Performance: Flight Facilities

Since their inception in 2009, Australian production duo Flight Facilities have continued to soar by dropping new singles year after year. Exceeding all expectations at The Regency Ballroom in San Francisco during Noise Pop 2015, they arrived at CRSSD on Sunday night and didn’t disappoint, employing guest vocalists like Brooke Addamo (aka Owl Eyes) to engage the crowd and supplement their disco-house grooves.


CRSSD Festival - STRFKR

Most Under-Appreciated Set: STRFKR

Portland electronic quartet STRFKR have been going strong for more than eight years now. With four studio albums to their name, Joshua Hodges, Shawn Glassford, Keil Corcoran and Patrick Morris have continued to build on their synth-heavy sound. Unfortunately with DJ Harvey and Thomas Jack playing sets on the festival’s two other stages at the same time, STRFKR’s rather fun and upbeat performance on Saturday went relatively unnoticed.


CRSSD Festival - Goldroom

Sexiest Stage Presence: Goldroom

We unexpectedly caught Goldroom at Lightning in a Bottle a couple years ago, so we were already familiar with Josh Legg’s breezy, chilled-out arrangements. But somehow we did forget how sexy Mereki Beach can be when she takes over the mic, as she strutted her stuff in her shiny kicks midway through Goldroom’s Saturday afternoon set. With Legg getting the live band back together, fans of the LA-based act should be seeing a lot more of Beach.


CRSSD Festival - Slow Magic

Most Mysterious Performance: Slow Magic

One of the biggest enigmas in electronic music these days is the man behind a Technicolor wolf mask. While his identity still remains unknown to most, his fans know him best by his stage name Slow Magic (read our review of his SF show from the fall). Though a small, yet passionate crowd assembled for his early-afternoon set on the main stage Sunday, you had to feel for a guy wearing a mask and playing drums in almost 90-degree heat.


Noise Pop 2015: Who made the ‘most’ of SF’s 12-day indie fest?

Caribou


Caribou at The Fillmore // Photo by Justin Yee

Photos by Justin Yee, Pedro Paredes, Mike Rosati, Alfonso Solis & Nicole Alfaro // Written by Molly Kish //

Noise Pop //
Bay Area venues – San Francisco & Oakland
February 20th-March 1st, 2015 //

2015 marked the Bay Area’s 23rd annual celebration of independent music, art, film and more, affectionately known as Noise Pop. Running 12 full days and taking place at more than 20 different venues throughout SF and the East Bay, this marathon party is best described as the West Coast version of South by Southwest.

Each year, Noise Pop highlights both the biggest stars within the independent music and art industries as well as emerging artists performing at the peak of their games and has always been ahead of the curve when it comes to booking their acts — and this year was no exception. Curating a demographic of music fans with limitless knowledge, expectations and preferential ranges, this festival never fails to create some of the most memorable experiences in live entertainment throughout the Bay Area.

Noise Pop remains one of our favorite times of the year, not only for its amazing lineups and exceptional performances, but also for its genuine ability to bring music and lifestyle connoisseurs from across the globe to extrapolate, communicate and participate in the independent culture of the Bay Area.

Here are some of our favorite moments from Noise Pop 2015.


Most Likely to Have a Hospital Bill: Ben Gibbard

Gibbard enlisted Sun Kill Moon’s Mark Kozelek to play guitar for him after breaking his wrist before his big opening night performance at the Swedish American Music Hall. We’re still surprised the notorious shit talker (Kozelek) didn’t give Gibbard a harder time about it, considering the last song off Kozelek’s Benji is titled “Ben’s My Friend” and is about how Kozelek went to the Greek Theatre in Berkeley to watch Gibbard play with The Postal Service before proceeding to have a mental breakdown.

Runner-up: PPL MVR

This second-place honor goes to SNWBLL after the band had to cancel its performance at Bottom of the Hill due to some unfortunate bladder issues.


The Black Ryder

Most Likely to Inspire 2015 Festival Fashion: The Black Ryder

Dark, brooding and beautifully tragic. Beyond the torrid love affair story and musical diatribe to accompany the duo of Aimee Nash and Scott Van Ryper, the band embodies its self-proclaimed “Rhinestone Drone” sound into a wicked wardrobe, guaranteed to materialize on the proverbial polo fields across the nation this summer.

Runner-up: Bestie

The Vancouver outfit brought some creativity to the merch table with fun and functional band gear, such as koozies and friendship bracelets, as you can see here via Instagram.

https://instagram.com/p/zjwd2OJ5-G/


Kindness

Most Bar-Raising Performance of the Festival: Kindness

“(Adam) Bainbridge grabbed one audience member’s cell phone out of its hands and filmed himself as well as the crowd with it at one point, elevating the crowd-interaction a notch. He sang from on top of the bar at stage left, walked into the crowd with his mic and made a huge lap while singing to individuals in the audience to end the night.”

Read the full review here.


Dan Deacon

Act Most Likely to Prompt a Mind-Altering Freak Out: Dan Deacon

“Layer upon insane layer of sound interprets into harmonious infectiousness, a feat that hints at an intersection of mathematical and creative genius. The guy takes all sorts of frequencies and cross sections of genre elements and composes it all together into a crescendo of weird, atypical pop. And by weird, I mean the very good kind of weird.”

Read the full review here.


Holly Herndon

Runner-up: Holly Herndon

“People laughed nervously as a slow burn of glitch sounds began to emerge, and before you knew it, her browsing gave way to an interactive, virtual world featuring two-dimensional cutouts of people floating about while strategically-placed cameras around the room recorded and projected images of the crowd, usually catching them unexpectedly on their phones, on two adjacent screens.”

Read the full review here.


Surfer Blood

Most Entertaining Attempt at a Cover Song: Surfer Blood

These guys covered “Hey Sandy” by Polaris, aka the theme song for “The Adventures of Pete & Pete.”

Runner-up: Girrafage‘s rendition of Miley Cyrus’ “Party in the USA”


Caribou

Most Likely to Be Headlining Future Festivals: Caribou

Absolutely destroying two back-to-back, sold-out nights at The Fillmore, Caribou’s live show is currently on a world tour, hitting all of the largest festival stages in its wake. We unanimously believe that this act will be one of the biggest of 2015 and are keeping our fingers crossed that they will be filling the empty spot in their August tour schedule with a stop at this year’s Outside Lands Music Festival.


Flight Facilities

Runner-up: Flight Facilities

“… to consider booking this lineup on a ‘school night’ at a venue with a max capacity of 1,424 people was a pretty bold call. Subsequently though, it was also one that paid off in easily the largest dance party of the festival.”

Read the full review here.


Les Sins

Most Likely to Break the “Local Music” Barrier: Les Sins

“Intermingling his own material with disco classics, 90’s pop jams and dirty trap beats, Bundick had the crowd on fire and easily could have prolonged the party well into the after hours had there been the option to do so.”

Read the full review here.

Geographer

Runner-up: Geographer

With a doctored lineup and powerful new songwriting approach, Mike Deni has taken full reign of the band’s beloved history of material and is moving forward into bold, uncharted territory — a leap of faith that just might cover the extra ground needed to penetrate a mainstream audience.


Flight Facilities soar above expectations at The Regency Ballroom

Flight FacilitiesPhotos by Justin Yee // Written by Molly Kish //

Flight Facilities with Touch Sensitive, Owl Eyes //
The Regency Ballroom – San Francisco
February 24th, 2015 //

Australian electronic production duo Flight Facilities landed at The Regency Ballroom on the only Bay Area stop of their North American “Down to Earth” tour last week for Noise Pop 2015. Transforming the venue into an aeronautic disco, these two flyboys brought the house down with help from tourmate Touch Sensitive and Owl Eyes (aka Brooke Addamo).

Pumping through a showcase of their club-banging singles and a majority of the duo’s 2014 studio album, Flight Facilities kept the audience moving and surprisingly enthusiastic for a packed house on a Tuesday night. Beyond electrifying the dance floor with live remixes of crowd favorites “Crave You” and “Clair De Lune,” highlights of the night included Owl Eyes performing “Heart Attack” amongst several other vocal tracks in person and Touch Sensitive joining the whole crew on stage for a rousing rendition of Stardust’s “Music Sounds Better With You” to close the night.

Flight Facilities

Both Touch Sensitive and Flight Facilities have rocked several of the Bay Area’s venues with DJ sets and live performances over the past year, promoting their debut albums as labelmates on Future Classic Records. Without question, both acts on this bill would have been equally capable of throwing a raging party at any mid-size venue, warehouse or club in SF on a weekend night.

So, for Noisepop 2015 to consider booking this lineup on a “school night” at a venue with a max capacity of 1,424 people was a pretty bold call. Subsequently though, it was also one that paid off in easily the largest dance party of the festival. Selling out and tossing aside attendee’s inhibitions for the chance to take flight with their fellow weekday warriors, the combo and impressive live collaboration of Touch Sensitive and Flight Facilities with special guest Owl Eyes undoubtedly made for a special night at Noise Pop 2015.

Noise Pop 2015: Get the most out of San Francisco’s essential 12-day indie fest

np2015_header-imageWritten by Mike Frash & Molly Kish //

Noise Pop //
Bay Area venues – San Francisco & Oakland
February 20th-March 1st, 2015 //

Indie-minded music and culture will be taking over the San Francisco Bay Area with the 23rd iteration of Noise Pop beginning this week. Progressive and innovative music is the hallmark of Noise Pop Fest, and this year is no exception. Outside of the incredible musical lineup, Noise Pop has curated a wondrous series of events including film, photography & stage for the 2015 showcase.

Noise Pop headquarters has moved to renovated Swedish American Hall on Market Street where a bunch of free, fun & intriguing events will take place.

And when it comes to the music, get there early. Most shows have 2-3 openers before the headliner takes the stage, and one of the best aspects of Noise Pop is discovering the next great indie act before they blow up.

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1. Go to under-the-radar Noise Pop Shows that aren’t sold out (yet)

If you can’t spring for a badge, consider going to these yet to sell out shows:

Flight Facilities, Touch Sensitive — The Regency Ballroom
Tuesday, February 24th

At long last Aussie production & remix-ranglin’ duo Flight Facilities released their first full length of original material last year with Down To Earth. Arguably the most essential dance party of Noise Pop, fans of Poolside, Classixx & Flume should queue up to kick off a colossal week.


Jessica Pratt, Kevin Morby, Carroll, Two Sheds – The Chapel
Wednesday, February 25th

Introverted songwriting and minimalist instrumentation lay the foundation for Jessica Pratt’s beguiling voice — one that is on the road touting her second album, On Your Own Love Again. The former San Franciscan was discovered and initially promoted by White Fence’s Tim Presley, so it’s no surprise Pratt’s warm take on dream pop includes a dash of subversive psych.


Les Sins, DJ Cali, DJ Dials — The New Parish
Thursday, February 26th

Did you know Toro y Moi has a side project and dance alias, Les Sins, that incorporates elements of two step garage and dub into an electronic-based smorgasbord? Well he does, and Chaz Bundick is taking the project to The New Parish after blowing minds at his Song Exploder Live Podcast Recording earlier that day for Noise Pop Thursday at Swedish American Hall (more on that below).


No Joy, Devon Williams, Vaniish, Chasms — Bottom of the Hill
Friday, February 27th

It might be a bit obvious to summarize the band No Joy as a shoegazing indie/noise pop outfit with an ounce of doom, but the label suits them well. The Montreal based group have promised their third record this year, stating last week that they are “still not sure when exactly or what it’s called, but its definitely pretty fucked! Played a lot of shows and partied really hard every single night, hope you like the music because we’re completely insane now.”


Kindness, Pell — Mezzanine
Saturday, February 28th

Adam Bainbridge is Kindness, the musician that brought the gems “House” and “Swingin’ Party” to the world in 2012. Last year he released his second album Otherness with contributions from his Blood Orange bud Dev Hynes, Kelela & Robyn — you’ll want get south of Market for this exciting indie mash of R&B, disco and funk.


James Vincent McMorrow (Solo), Kevin Garrett, Avid Dancer — Swedish American Hall
Sunday, February 29th

Post Tropical may have been one of the most underrated albums from 2014 — the enveloping album from James Vincent McMorrow hits the sweet spot for those on stand by for Justin Vernon’s next effort. McMorrow is helping to wrap up Noise Pop 2015 with a solo performance that’s sure to sweep listeners away into pure, crescendo-induced bliss.


Deafheaven, Bosse-De-Nage, Mortal Bodies, Cloak – Rickshaw Stop
Sunday, February 29th

San Francisco’s Deafheaven made a mondo impact in 2013 with Sunbather, which reintroduced their experimental black metal way beyond the Bay Area. They’ve hinted that their third LP will come out this year, so get to Rickshaw Stop for the chance to preview some new material.


2. Get a Super Fan Badge and do it all

Super Fan BadgeSee any Noise Pop show or event of your choosing if you spring for the Super Fan Badge, which includes these shows that are sold the fuck out:

• Best Coast at Bottom of the Hill, 2/24
• Surfer Blood at Rickshaw Stop, 2/25
• Giraffage at The Independent, 2/26
• Cathedrals at The Independent, 2/27 & 2/28
• Grouper at Swedish American Hall, 2/27
• Dan Deacon at The Chapel, 2/28
• Caribou at The Fillmore, 3/1 & 3/2


Toro-Y-Moi

3. Observe Toro Y Moi & How to Dress Well deconstruct their music (then watch your head explode)

These unique events are partially seated shows/Song Exploder Live Podcast Recordings where the audience becomes immersed in a live podcast that allows musicians to break down their songs through storytelling and personal perspectives.This year’s festivities, taking place at the Noise Pop Festival headquarters at Swedish American Hall, will focus on the creation of material by:

•Toro y Moi @ Swedish American Music Hall, 2/26 at 5 p.m.
Chaz Bundick will be breaking down a song from his forthcoming album, What For?, dropping May 7th.
RSVP HERE and get there early…

• How to Dress Well @ Swedish American Hall, 2/27 at 1 p.m.
Tom Krell will deconstruct “Pour Cyril” from his 2014 LP, “What Is This Heart?”
RSVP HERE and get there early…


NP_film

4. Take in Independent Cinema with the Noise Pop Film Series

The films on deck this year offer a wide variety of musical subject matter. One that peaks our interest is Salad Days: The Birth of Punk In The Nation’s Capital, West Coast Premiere + special guest short film curation by NOWNESS @ Roxie Theater, 2/21 at 7 p.m.

This event will be accompanied by a Q&A session with director Scott Crawford and Mark Haggerty (Gray Matter) Meghan Adkins and Nicky Thomas (Fire Party).

Here are all film options during Noise Pop. What strikes your fancy?

Hardcore Devo Live @ Roxie Theater, 2/20 7 p.m.
Metropolis: Live Scoring by Chrome Canyon @ The Swedish American Music Hall, 2/20 7 p.m.
Ollies, Dollies & Drones: A Survey of Spike Jonze’s Skate Video’s @ Roxie Theater, 2/20 9:15 p.m.
The Case of the Three-Sided Dream @ Artists’ Television Access, 2/21 2 p.m.
Welcome to Deathfest + Heavy Metal @ Artists’ Television Access, 2/21 4 p.m.
Lance Bangs: Immortal Volume @ Swedish American Music Hall, 2/21 5 p.m.
Beautiful Noise @ Roxie Theater, 2/21 9:15 p.m.
The 78 Project @ Artists Television Access, 2/22 2 p.m.
Christopher Willits Presents Opening: Film + Live Scoring @ Swedish American Music Hall, 2/22 7 p.m.
Stop Making Sense @ The Independent, 2/23 8 p.m.
Life on the V: The Story of V66 @ Artists’ Television Access, 2/24 7 p.m.
Sound and Chaos @ Artists’ Television Access, 2/25 7 p.m.
I’ve Rambled This Country Both Early and Late: Alan Lomaz Centennial Project @ Swedish American Music Hall, 2/28 3:30 p.m.


primus_MIKE

5. Bathe in some of the best Bay Area photography from the past 23 years of Noise Pop

23 for 23: Celebrating Noisepop Rock Photograpahy in Year 23 @ Hotel Biron, 2/26 7 p.m.

This live music photography event will showcase the work of Showbams’ very own Michael Rosati alongside Bay Area photographers Paige Parsons, Deb Zeller, Peter Ellenby, Heather Bernard, John Hartsfield, Jeanne Ellenby, Tara Graves, Martin Lacey, Emily Anderson, Joey Pagliani and Daniel Kielman.


home-street-home-album

6. Watch a raucously entertaining musical created by NOFX’s Fat Mike, a professional dominatrix & the guy that made Avenue Q

Home Street Home: A Original Rock Musical @ Z Space, 2/22

Created by Fat Mike of NOFX, Jeff Marx creator of Avenue Q and professional dominatrix Goddess Soma, Home Street Home is a brand new, highly unconventional dark comedy/musical, glorifying the hedonistic exploration of sex work, drug use and BDSM culture. Written from the collective perspectives of the authors’ own life experiences, the story follows Sue a teenage runaway who encounters and assimilates into a tribe of street punks, whom through their wild adventures form an atypical bond, finding strength and happiness amongst their abstract lifestyles.

Making its debut in San Francisco at Noise Pop 2015, the staged theatrical production will only play 11 performances through March 7th. Listen to the full concept album featuring songs by NOFX and members of Descendents, Lagwagon, No Use for a Name, Alkaline Trio, Mad Caddies, Frank Turner, The Living End, Old Man Markley, Me First and the Gimme Gimmes, Dropkick Murphys, Bad Cop/Bad Cop, Dance Hall Crashers, The Aggrolites, Limp, The Real McKenzies, Mariachi El Bronx, R.K.L. and Hedwig & the Angry Inch here:

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Five reasons why you won’t want to miss CRSSD

CRSSD FestivalBy Josh Herwitt //

CRSSD Festival //
Waterfront Park – San Diego
March 14th-15th, 2015 //

Making its debut this spring at San Diego’s Waterfront Park, CRSSD Festival is the newest music festival to call California home.

Los Angeles promoter Goldenvoice and San Diego promoter FNGRS CRSSD have teamed up to assemble an eclectic lineup of electronic talent, one that’s suited for a more sophisticated, mature audience with headliners like Empire of the Sun, Chromeo, Justin Martin, Jamie Jones and more. Simian Mobile Disco, Classixx, ODESZA, STRFKR, Flight Facilities, Breakbot, DJ Harvey, Robert DeLong, Lee Burridge, Pete Tong and Aeroplane are some of the other names rounding out this year’s impressive two-day bill.

With CRSSD serving as a nice warm-up before Coachella in April, here are five other reasons why you’ll want to be in SD for all the festivities.

5. Tickets are going fast

Both early-bird and advance tickets are sold out, and only weekend GA passes, which started at $85 and are now up to $145, are left for purchase at this point. You won’t want to wait until the last minute to buy your pass and risk seeing the festival sell out.

4. There are more than just DJs

Portland-based quartet STRFKR provide an intriguing blend of synthpop and indie pop, while Robert DeLong and Slow Magic employ the one-man-band philosophy when performing live. Trust us, your weekend down south won’t be filled with only a bunch of button pushers.

3. You will definitely dance

With Empire of the Sun and Chromeo leading the way, there’s little chance that you won’t be dancing your ass off by the end of the night. Not to mention, electronica vets Pete Tong and Simian Mobile Disco certainly know how to throw down, too.

2. The location

Overlooking the San Diego Bay, Waterfront Park offers one of the best backdrops you could find for a music festival. Between the sunshine and sweet tunes, it’s sure to feel like mid-summer in mid-March.

1. The music

While the lineup leans heavy on the electronic, there is enough talent from top to bottom to keep you entertained and not overwhelmed over two days. With its laid-back vibes, CRSSD feels like it could be a perfect fit in sunny San Diego.

Waterfront Park - San Diego

WIN TICKETS: Flight Facilities at Mezzanine Friday 4/18

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Win tix to the SOLD OUT Flight Facilities “fauxchella” performance at Mezzanine below.

Flight Facilities with EUG (Face / Public Release), Derek Love //
Mezzanine — San Francisco
April 17, 2014 (Thursday) //

Flight Facilities, (otherwise known as Hugo & Jimmy) are taking a break between their debut performances in the Sahara Tent of this year’s Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival to headline a very special performance at Mezzanine in SF this Friday night!

The Austrailian remix artists originally partnered up in 2009 when they first started to put their own spin on various songs by electronic counterparts while working on production with Bag Raiders, Toecutter and Sneaky Soundsystem. Debuting their first original song “Crave You”, featuring guest vocals by Giselle Rosselli, Hugo and Jimmy breached Australian radio airwaves via Triple J in 2010 and took flight on their first international tour, dubbed Flight Facilities “Maiden Voyage”. Gaining traction throughout the next couple years winning a J Award for “Foreign Language” and industry accolades for their ambitious short film for 2012’s “Clair de Lune”, Hugo and Jimmy have yet to slow down on their jet-fueled journey to intercontinental stardom.

Featured in Rockstar Games 2013 release of Grand Theft Auto V, the duo got catapulted into the electronic mainstream via their remix of “Shine a Light”. They are currently in the midst of their massive North American and European tour, bringing along with them their very dear (and extremely talented) friend Owl Eyes to fill in on guest vocals for all of their performances. For your chance to check out this SOLD OUT show on Friday night at the Mezzanine, enter here via Showbams.

Tickets only available for Bottle Service reservations, give Mezzanine a call at 415.625.8880 or email bottleservice@mezzaninesf.com


Win-2-Tickets

Enter to win if you can attend this show Friday, April 18th at Mezzanine in SF.

Submit your full name and email address below.
Contest ends Friday, April 18th at Noon. Winners will be picked at random & notified by email. Your email will be kept private – we will share your email with no one. 21+ only.

Like Showbams on Facebook or follow Showbams on twitter to be eligible to win.

CONTEST CLOSED

Watch their “Clair de Lune” short:

Watch the video for “Stand Still”: