A Great Buy

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The Crystal Method
Foundation Nightclub, Seattle, Wa
07.18.14

Fresh off a new album, The Crystal Method set up shop at the Foundation Nightclub in Seattle on a bustling summer Friday night. Soon they will be putting to rest a string of tours that has reinvigorated their fan base, and put a serious exclamation point on a chapter that was in jeopardy after Scott Kirkland’s surgery. Their new work encompasses their old sounds while continuing to push their creative envelope, inviting a new audience while comforting the old.

This was a DJ set, and Ken Jordan and Scott Kirkland peddled their wares in menacing rotation. Each spot was 10 to 15 minutes, remixing samples, pulling from their catalogue, and layering in their iconic, pulsing, analog synth sound. In his station, Jordan remained low key and focused on the turn tables. Kirkland, on the other hand, was very expressive, and at times looked like a roaring lion. Occasionally, he would pull his headphones forward and cover his eyes. One had to wonder what he was really seeing.

The club was mysteriously (and spectacularly) lit, and while huge fans blew balloons around the floor, go-go dancers clung to the hanging skywalks overhead. There wasn’t a still body in the house.

Foundation did a great job putting this one together. It was, in all respects, a great show.

Review by T. Monte
Photos by Sunita Martini

The Crystal Method

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Dry Land

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Filter
El Corazon, Seattle, Wa
07.17.14

A packed house at El Corazon on Thursday night became witness to a man that had lost himself, found himself, tied down anchor, and was gut-wrenchingly honest about it. Filter came to Seattle with not just their trademarked brand of alternative sound, but with a clean slate and an eye for the future.

Singer Richard Patrick, humbled at 46 years old, still looks and sounds just as good as, say, twelve years ago. But he is a different man, with a different outlook, who has figured out a positive way to shift the weight on his shoulders. His performance tonight belies the tidal waves he’s been navigating over recent years. As the tides roll in and out, it appears he has docked himself, for now, in the harbor, safe and sound.

Filter took the stage twenty minutes late due to technical difficulties. Apologizing profusely, Patrick made it up to the crowd with a longer set. Opinionated and adamant, he lamented on what ‘alternative rock’ means today, where singing and playing a banjo has somehow made its way into the genre. They disregard the notion of playing for money, cars, and women, but rather for their fans, and to keep the flame of alternative rock alive.

Patrick spoke highly of his wife, whom he says kept him grounded without holding him back creatively. He said Surprise was written in praise of women, and that everybody needs to learn some form of love for each other. Skinny, in the same hand, was written for the kids that don’t fit into society’s notion of ‘normal.’ Standing through plenty of shows, I always appreciate the bands that give their fans a little backstory to their work, and Filter didn’t disappoint on conversation. Before playing Soldiers of Misfortune, Patrick reminisced on a friend from Portland, who had died in Iraq, at 21 years of age.

The entire floor moshed as El Corazon shook to life. The air inside was the only thing stifled, and the crowd stayed respectful throughout the set. A sweaty, happy, honest mess.

Set List:
No Love
Captain Bligh
American Cliché
Jurassitol
(Can’t You) Trip Like I Do
We Hate It When You Get What You Want
What Do You Say
Take a Picture
Surprise
Self Inflicted
Skinny
Soldiers of Misfortune
It’s My Time
The Best Things
Hey Man, Nice Shot
Dose
Welcome to the Fold

Review by T. Monte
Photos by Sunita Martini

Filter

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Believing In The Sound

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Tori Amos
Paramount Theatre, Seattle, Wa
07.17.14

The bar inside is familiar and comfortable, if you’re able to get a seat. We sit by the window, and as the sun goes down I catch my reflection in the glass. I’m older now, and my wife is by my side, never minding the years gone by. She laughs like a school girl, as beautiful as ever, and her excitement makes me smile.

It will be difficult to break down an evening that has taken so many years to collect, architect, build, polish, and perfect. And, lest I leave any uncertainty here, this evening was, indeed, perfect.

Sweet, haunting echoes fill the foyer of the Paramount, and our teenage years beckon us to our seats. Like driving down lonely roads at midnight, I close my eyes and imagine all those times I looked for myself and found nothing.

We’re here, Tori.

The darkness is broken by two pianos, their keys facing each other and lovingly decorated with one-word notes. Between the rows of keys sits a delicate, tiny lady with fiery hair and a beautiful smile. She seems vulnerable and fragile. Nothing, really, has changed.

The audience is excited, yet patient and polite. One person is yelling ‘I love you, Tori!’ Everyone sits captivated. Tori begins a set that will burn the next two hours, seamlessly rolling through one gem after another. There is a woman three aisles up from me, twiddling her hands in the air along to the lyrics, and it reminds me of a church service.

There is a quality here that brings us back to a clean slate; stripped down, basic and natural. A woman, a piano, and a powerful voice. And an intangible that we can all believe in. We are all, perhaps, submissive to something.

She occasionally hits her piano for a time signature, jarring me back to the moment. She ended her set on her bench, back arched and arms outstretched. Graceful, like a bird that navigates the wind and the sun. She played beautifully, effortlessly switching pianos and piloting through the night.

Drive down that midnight road, Tori.

Set list:

(Part One):
Parasol
Pancake
Crucify
Ophelia
Winter
Frog On My Toe
Oysters
Ribbons Undone
Secret Spell

(Lizard Lounge):
Ain’t No Sunshine/Same Love
She’s Leaving Home

(Part Two):
Bliss
Leather
Another Girls Paradise
In The Springtime Of His Voodoo
Cornflake Girl

(Encore):
Precious Things
Sixteen Shades Of Blue
Hey Jupiter

Review by T. Monte
Photos by Sunita Martini

Tori Amos

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Grab a Shovel, TheCHIVE Diet Is Just For You

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Chive Fest
Seattle Center, Seattle, Wa
07.12.14

Should we feel pretty lucky? Damn straight!

Website theCHIVE gave Seattle a nod and took up house in our very own Seattle Center this weekend, making stop number two on a four city tour. Chive Fest, billed as ‘probably the best little festival in the world,’ went on without a hitch and went off with a bang. Thousands of Chivers filled Seattle Center, leaving many park-goers to wonder what the hell was going on between the tall, covered fences…

Ne’er you mind, folks. If you knew, you’d know.

Whatever side of the fence you were on, the airwaves began to fill with super sweet sounds at the stroke of three. Two stages, set up on opposite ends of the park, hosted a total of eight bands throughout the evening. Each set was an hour long and the stages continually rotated. The setup was very efficient, and the next man up was ready to play at the strike of the hour. The level of organization for this event made eight hours seem like four. You had to make time, between watching all the awesome bands, to jam in the fun stuff and realize what this website was all about. We’ll go into that later. Or just look it up (because you should know anyway).

Aside from the delicious, reasonably priced food, and the multitude of beer stands, theCHIVE had booths set up around the Center for some relaxing game time. A life-sized, adult-esque version of Operation, complete with enormous tweezers, had a crowd in stitches. Meanwhile, you could play some beanbag toss or join in on an impromptu game of frisbee. In addition, TheCHIVE had strategically placed beach balls throughout Seattle Center, breaking up any monotony that may have existed in the stage crowds. For a moment, one may have thought this was a California summer. The Seattle gods had blessed us with a ninety degree Saturday, and the afternoon sun had washed everyone into relaxation. I’m ashamed to say I was waiting for the Space Needle to fall on us.

Did I mention that it was a beautiful day filled with fantastic music and a gorgeous view? And I don’t just mean Seattle landmarks. Man, this festival had it all. Go buy some Chive merchandise at that booth over there to commemorate this occasion, and also because they notoriously sell out of all their stuff. Their merch was very fun indeed. So were the Chivettes.

To encompass their laid back, ‘screw it, I’m drinking,’ knowledge-seeking philosophy, theCHIVE sported, in order from first to last, these awesome bands: Ghost Beach, Surfer Blood, Moon Taxi, St. Lucia, The Birds of Satan, Washed Out, Steel Panther, and Girl Talk.

As the sun went down, and only the brave kids ventured into the fountain, Chive co-founder John Resig took a moment to speak to all the happy Chivers awaiting the Steel Panther show. As he looked out onto the crowd in amazement, he reminisced on the day he bought the web name for $9.99 on GoDaddy. He had brought all these people here together, for fun, and genuinely, for a purpose. TheCHIVE website continually raises great sums for charity organizations. I’m not sure it gets much better than this.

Grab your girl, grab your glass, keep calm and Chive on.

Review by T. Monte
Photos by Sunita Martini

Girl Talk

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Steel Panther

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Washed Out

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The Birds of Satan

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St. Lucia

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Moon Taxi

 Surfer Blood

Chivers!

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10 CONCERTS WORTH ATTENDING IN JULY

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Summertime in Seattle has officially kicked off, as our bodies furiously try to sort out the explosion of vitamin D and amazing music that’s begun to pump through our veins! While some artists such as Tori Amos, The Crystal Method, Say Anything, Night Terrors of 1927, and Sarah Jaffe are all releasing new work, many have flagged Seattle as a rad spot to just come and party in the northwest sunshine. For example, our gorgeous skies have brought Filter out of tour hiatus. We certainly can’t blame them, and can anything else really take the credit for that?

Kicking off July will be the first Seattle Chive Fest, featuring acts such as Surfer Blood, Washed Out, Steel Panther, and mashup artist Girl Talk. Also, our three day Capital Hill Block Party will once again shut down any commerce to the east, with artists such as Chromeo, Spoon, Matt & Kim, A$AP Rocky, Pillar Point, and many more. If you haven’t purchased tickets to any of these amazing artists yet, then what the hell are you doing with your summer? Get on it, son!

*Concerts in order by date.

ChiveFest - 7/12 Seattle Center – Tickets

Night Terrors of 1927 - 7/15 The Crocodile - Tickets

Tori Amos - 7/17 The Paramount - Tickets

Filter - 7/17 El Corazon – Tickets

The Crystal Method - 7/18 Foundation Nightclub – Tickets

Modest Mouse - 7/18 Showbox - SOLD OUT!

Say Anything - 7/19 Showbox – Tickets

Sarah Jaffe - 7/21 Triple Door - Tickets

Capitol Hill Block Party - 7/25 – 7/27 - Tickets

Jay-Z & Beyonce -  7/30 Safeco Field – Tickets

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