Joe Izenman's Bumbershoot preview

By Joe Izenman on September 3, 2011


The usual disclaimer: I go to Bumbershoot for the bands I don't know, not the ones I do. So my daily previews are always a little thin on knowledge. But regardless, here are a few places where your trusty Weekly Volcano representative will be on day one of the fest:

12:00 PM - Campfire Ok (Fountain Lawn)
Me and banjo have really been getting along well lately. The Avett Brothers, Mumford & Son, Kimo Muraki. So starting off with a band promising "brass, piano, banjo and acoustic guitar" seemed like the way to go. Especially one coming to Tacoma for a Warehouse house show not long after their Bumbershoot appearance.

1:30 PM - Craft Spells (Fountain Lawn)

The number of acts this year that promise heavy use of a loop pedal is a little overwhelming, so we'll start with Craft Spells and see if we've had enough. If not convinced, we may move on to Brite Futures in the Key, or Kris Orlowski at the EMP.

2:45 PM - PUSA (Key Arena)
Go see this show. Seriously. They're too much fun not to. Chris Ballew and crew rock out like nobody's business, and you're not likely to see another act having more fun on the stage all weekend.

4:15 PM - Väsen (Mural Amphitheatre)
I went to PLU, so I knew a few Swedes, and one of them turned me onto a group called Garmarna. And if Väsen's brand of Swedish folk bears even a little resemblance to Garmarna's, then it's not something I am willing to miss, even a little.

5:30 PM - Twisted Fairy Tales (SIFF Cinema)
I wasn't able to catch any of the short films last year, and it made me a little sad. Since the only overlapping music that caught my eye had the word "loops" in the description, let's assume I'll be all looped out and ready for a short or two.

7:00 PM - Colin Meloy & Carson Ellis: Wildwood (Leo K. Theatre)
Time to spread the culture around a little bit. Whether you like the band or not, nobody who's taken more than a cursory listen to the Decemberists would be shocked to learn that Colin Meloy has a Master's degree in Creative Writing. Story songs are his business, and now he's made story books his business, too, with illustrator/wife Carson Ellis. Worth a gander.

9:15 PM - Minus the Bear (Fisher Green)

Is it wrong that the main reason I like these guys is for their song titles? Even if those titles have nothing to do with the songs? Maybe. But that's OK. A little wrong never hurt anyone. Neither did a little prog rock.

See you all on the grass. I'll be the guy who looks like me.