Big Ass Boombox Part 2

Night 2 of Big Ass Boombox was just as special as the first night if not more so. Things kicked off for us at Ash St Saloon with Atlas and the Astronaut. A high energy rock band with a classic rock sound. Their live show is a little eccentric but all the more awesome because of it.

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Next band we saw was Brain Control. A loud pop-rock band with another very high energy lead singer. Brain Control is a little more on the indie pop side of the spectrum.

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After seeing Brain Control we went over to Kelly’s Olympian to see one of our favorite Portland bands, Summer Cannibals. Once again Summer Cannibals crushed it with their gritty rock and roll. They also played a cover of “Breaking the Law,” which kicked ass.

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To close out the night and the Big Ass Boombox festival was A Happy Death. Their name is a lot like their music, a surfy-psycho billy, doomy type of rock. The crowd got all riled up and the lead singer decided to crowd surf at the end of the set.

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Overall Big Ass Boombox Vol.3 was by far the most fun free festival I’ve been to. If you are a fan of free live shows please do yourself a favor and go to the little ass boombox shows at the end of every month at Kelly’s Olympian. And stay tuned next year for more shenanigans.

Big Ass Boombox Part 1

 

This past weekend saw the third installment of Big Ass Boombox, a free music festival dedicated to loud pop influenced music. The festival features mostly local Portland bands with a few Seattle bands thrown in as well.
The first band that I caught was Cambrian Explosion. The sound that Cambrian Explosion has is straight psychedelic rock and roll. With a nice slow groove with high flying guitar solos. They were one of my favorite bands to see.

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Next band we saw was Foxy Lemon. These guys have a more streamlined rock and roll sound with punk influences. They put on a high energy show that got the crowd moving. Foxy Lemon has a classic rock kind of sound to them that is irresistible.

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Up after Foxy Lemon was one man band, Hands In. His style of music is more on the psychedelic electronic-pop side of the spectrum. With jangly guitar riffs and cool drum machine beats, Hands In was quite entertaining to watch and listen to.

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After Hands In we enjoyed a rousing set from Autonomics. The sound from Autonomics is a blend of punk-pop and surf metal. Their live show and recordings have such a positive high energy. The album is called Trust Your Instincts, go buy it.

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Last band of the night was Adventure Galley. A band that formed in Eugene and has moved their way up to Portland. These guys have a groovy synth-pop type of sound to them. Adventure Galley has some really dancy tunes and the people were getting down to their set.

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Live: Genders

Friday night at Mississippi Studios saw a gathering of amazing local Northwest rock bands. The first band is from Seattle called The Comettes. Their sound mixes shoegaze, surf rock, and great singing. Not only do The Comettes sound great live, but the recordings also sound damn good.

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Next to perform was Holiday Friends from Astoria, OR. Their debut album Chicks came out back in 2012 but it’s still a personal favorite of mine. Holiday friends are currently finishing up recording their second full length album, which should hopefully be coming out by the start of summer.

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Headlining the show was one of our new favorite local Portland bands, Genders. Their debut full length, Get Lost, was in our top albums of the year list last year. Genders have a high energy indie pop-rock sound. Complete with blissfully rocking guitars, awesome drumming, and great bass playing, Genders has such a well rounded style of music.

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Summer Cannibals

One of our favorite local Portland bands, Summer Cannibals, have just released a new EP called Make You Better. This EP is full of thick, juicy rock and roll. Summer Cannibals really satisfies the ears with their excellent song writing, gritty guitar riffs, and driving drum tracks. My favorite track is the title track that really grabs your attention with a screeching guitar solo. The closing track “Sit Still” is a close second, the track starts out a little more grungy then turns on the slow burner. This Summer Cannibals Make You Better EP is rock and roll anthem all wrapped into 12.5 minutes.
Summer Cannibals will have their EP release show on Thursday January 9th at Doug Fir Lounge and will also be preforming at Treefort Music Festival in Boise, ID later in March.

Grandhorse + The Comettes

Welcome to 2014 everyone, let’s start it off with some fresh indie rock. This band is called Grandhorse, they are local Portanders. Their new album is called Portraiturefolio. Grandhorse mixes a sunny indie rock vibe with a slight emo style of vocals. I really enjoy the back half of this album. “Heartsrings” has a groovy guitar hook that immediately gets your head bobbing. Then the next track “Washington” has more of a grungy rock sound to it. My favorite track though is “Qualia” a driving drum track along with a floating guitar riff that the vocals sing along with. Don’t get me wrong, the first half of the album is really good too, so listen to the whole thing. Download it for free on their bandcamp. They’ll also have a string of shows here in the NW at the end of January so check that out.

Next up is a Seattle band called The Comettes. Their latest release, Golden Blue, is a two song EP. The Comettes have an awesome laid back surfy sound to them. Somewhat similar to Charts or Gayze, but the lead singer belts out the vocals like Bono. I’ve been getting slightly obsessed with these two songs. The Comettes just put out the good vibes, so just listen to it. See them live in Portland on the 17th of January.