Its almost the most wonderful time of the year called festival season. And from KZUU’s perspective, one of the best festivals in the Northwest is The Treefort Music Festival. Over the next few weeks we hope to be an agent of persuasion to come celebrate the festival with us in Boise, ID from March 25th to the 29th . Treefort isn’t your typical festival for a variety of different reason. And we won’t try to water down what they offer, but if you enjoy “dance, drag, visual media, film, yoga, tech, etc” this festival has a “fort” for that. We however are a Radio Station. So we can at the very least try to give you our expert opinions on the the type of music that is coming to Treefort. For reference, there are nearly 500 artists that are slated for a slot at this festival. The great part about Treefort in particular is how they promote bands that don’t get enough recognition at staple festivals like Coachella, SXSW, or Lollapalooza. But the sometimes unfortunate other end of the equation is that there is definitely not enough time in the day to sort through the tens of hours of music in time for the festival. Especially to decide if you should spend your hard earned cash on a ticket. Luckily for our listeners, we have some amazing Music Directors heading to the festival that have been sorting through the madness to show you how awesome this festival is about to be! And as DJ’s its our job to curate and create a pallet for the listener to spread the word that can get as much awareness as possible. This is the first of many posts is about the road-warriors of the festival. The artists that have a 40 minute set that will fill in the gaps for your festival experience. Thanks for reading yet another wordy introduction and without further ado, take it away Shane, Flint, and Derek!
Ata Kak: Adagya – Ata Kak is a singer/rapper that was born in Kumasi, Ghana and eventually moved to Germany where he started playing music. And actually speaks Ghanaian on this track. Obviously I can’t understand the words, but its a great tune. It brings back 90’s trip hop and techno vibes that are complimented with his sing-talk style rapping.
Vanishing Twin: The Conservation of Energy – This tune is has one hell of a catchy bass riff. If anyone is familiar with the band ‘the blow’, they offer quirky lyrics and voice style comparisons. I imagine seeing these guys in a bar behind the fog of a smoke machine… but in a cool way. Its about aesthetics man!
Chong the Nomad: Nothing Else Feat. Jax Anderson – I actually got the opportunity to see Chong last year by suggestion from last years GM at KZUU, and boy do I love Chong now! Yes she does electronic music, and I understand that to some, they aren’t into watching someone fiddle on their laptops. But you gotta give her a chance if you go to this festival. She has a lot of personality. And this is a great song. Its a little lofi, but has fun instrumentation with cut/paste mentality.
Shabaka and the Ancestors: The Observer – So this group is actually quite jazzy. I feel like these guys would be fun to see just playing off each other. Trumpets, Saxophones, Pianos, Drums, Up-right base, you name it! They probably got it! This song is cool because its about how getting one drink… eventually turns into a crazy night! And theres a ‘drop’ dividing part 1 and 2 of the song and is pretty cool.
Monophonics: Beggin’ – Surf-rock meets electronic synths and is even a little funky. Its got a quite Amy Winehouse feel too, but from a guys voice. Gotta love a track that makes you wanna shake your booty and just wiggle a little.
Algiers: Dispossession – I’ll probably butcher this, but I’m getting serious Cold War Kids vibes from this song. Its got that catchy piano repeating chords dubbed over a simple drum beat. Song builds with some cool bass riffs and gospel chorus backing. Algiers is one of those bands that doesn’t have one song that sounds like the other. Which is always refreshing!
Alien Boy: Somewhere Without Me – This song is the epitome of deep, brooding emo that really tickles my feathers. Super heavy and grungy. Alien Boy is also signed to the same label as Somos, one of my favorite bands of all time. The kind of band you would really want to see in the basement at a house show with a can of Pabst in one hand and a stogie in the other. Don’t forget to wear your flannel with all the patches on it.
Spaceface: Cowboy Lightning – Led by Jake Ingalls of The Flaming Lips. Offers tasty psychedelic rock much akin to earlier Tame Impala or Temples’ latest album. Pays homage to early 70s rock as well while still staying tasteful and modern. May be one of my favorite psych-rock bands currently.
Meltt: Deeper Water – Not quite psych rock, though there are definitely influences. Much more electronic and ethereal than what one would expect from a psych rock band. Super catchy chorus and overall a really fun listen. The ambiance they establish reminds me of early Glass Animals.
Louis Prince: Lounging – A smooth example of what I’d expect from a modern indie act. There are obvious pop elements, but it’s still a bit weird and experimental to keep things interesting. This will be the first song on my summer playlist this year.
Kainalu: Finding Peace of Mind – Funky and psychedelic electronic music. Very similar to the band Home, though the drums are much fatter and the mix is not as lo-fidelity. Kainalu plays a heavy emphasis on playful synth melodies that are delicately layered with an array of other instruments (flute is most present in this song).
Donte Thomas: MAGENTA – Very similar to Masego, in the sense that there’s an emphasis on the instrumentation and soulful chorus. This song is, well, I’ll just say it. This song is downright sexy. The whole album is sexy. The dude can rap too though, which is really selling it for me.
Great Grandpa: 28 J’s L8r – Great Grandpa are a Seattle-based grunge/pop band that’s sure to put on a super fun show. 28 J’s L8r, from their 2017 album Plastic Cough, shows a little bit of all they have to offer, from the quite-loud dynamic of grunge music, to crunchy guitar riffs, to carefree female vocals.
YOB: Ablaze – Ablaze is the 10-minute opening song from the doom/stoner metal band’s latest album. It features all of the parts of a typical song from the genre, with slow, heavy riffing, fuzzy guitar tones, and an overall epic sound. This is definitely the band to see if you want to get your face melted for a whole set.
John Craigie: Dissect the Bird (Live) – John is a folk singer/storyteller, known in his hometown of Portland for his relaxed vibe, sense of humor, and crowd interaction. On this live recording you can hear him mixing his storytelling in with his folk guitar, jokes about leaving his fly down, and his harmonica.
Dance with the Dead: Dressed to Kill – A part of the retro synthwave revival movement, Dance with Dead make music inspired by 80’s John Carpenter soundtracks as well as their background in metal. Dressed to Kill showcases that, with its eerie vibe and guitar solos.
Antonioni: Stutter Step – The Seattle-based band was recently in the area for Modest Music Festival, and they put on a great show. They make fun indie rock, and Stutter Step is a great example of their style. It features a danceable groove, strong female vocals, and upbeat Strokes-inspired guitar work.
Props for reading till the very end. You get a gold star for participation. So now you can see the diversity in music offered by the festival. Hopefully these are getting you hyped for Treefort. We sure are. If you have already been sold, head to this link: https://www.treefortmusicfest.com/ … And if we haven’t quite convinced you yet, check back next week for more reasons on why you gotta go!