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The 5th Annual Freakout! Fest comes back tonight

Triple city-based indie label Freakout Records has been churning out some pretty fine electronic, psych and lively rock from three out of the four corners of the states. Operating out of Seattle, Los Angeles and New York, Freakout has taken to occupying various venues in Ballard for its festival since 2012, with artists of their own catalog, as well as other artists scattered around the Northwest and the country. Freakout! Festival returns again tonight, and its bill is as stacked as ever.

Co-presented by The Stranger, Audioasis on KEXP and supported by Killroom Records, Treefort Music Fest and Artist Home Record Club, Freakout! Fest will be hitting up its usual Ballard staples like Conor Byrne and Tractor Tavern, with Sarah Gerritsen and Roadkill Ghost Choir kicking things off with some early sets. Tonight's hip hop will be fulfilled by up and coming lyricist Taylar Elizza Beth, with some dark stoner psych coming from Blackwater Holy Light. Energetically folky blues comes from Battleme, who are out on tour supporting their new Cult Psychotica release, while Charms and FKL bring more of a dancey feel to a couple of the headlining spots.

Much of Saturday's bill recalls a warmer, more carefree season thanks to some surf-drenched sets from Baywitch, The Shivas and Guantanamo Baywatch, The White Tears and Pearl Dragon is Dead are collaborating on their performance at the Conor Byrne, Porter Ray and Jus Moni killing it in the rhythm and rhymes department, and Kelli Schaefer and Maiah Manser representing for solo noir pop.

There's so many more acts to see, thank goodness they're all playing on the same street. You can find more information about the artists, venues and tickets over at the Freakout Records site.

Support XRAY.FM Tomorrow at X-ILE on Ray Street

We love XRAY. The community radio station has done tons in the realm of supporting not only local bands and solo musicians, but supporting other DIY outlets that promote artistic and creative endeavors. They give a lot to all of us so here's another opportunity for us to give back to them.

Tomorrow, Dig A Pony will be hosting a benefit show with the witty title of X-ILE on Ray Street. Tickets will be $5 and all proceeds going back into the volunteer run station.

Theo Craig and Chancie Chance will be playing tunes in between sets by the ever-entertaining Lola Buzzkill and the darlings of Psychomagic, not to mention the benefit also acting as the album release and tour kickoff show for the loveable Reptaliens (who also help set the benefit up!). Adding even more intrigue to the set, a secret special headliner will also be taking the stage.

Head down to Dig A Pony on SE Grand at 8 p.m. tomorrow to give a lil something to XRAY's cause, hang out with much of the fellow music scene and to figure out who the secret headliner is!

Reptaliens Announce Cali Tour

When former members of BRAINSTORM, Wampire and Blouse creatively combine with parts of Fog Father, you get an indelibly lo-fi, twee, garage pop-like sound à la a cocktail of Cults, Beach House and Ariel Pink that is impossible not to lovingly drink up. That cocktail comes by the name of Portland group Reptaliens, and they're taking their delicious sounds on a musical ride down the West Coast.

Reptaliens as a group may be newer, but its members are vets in the Portland music scene that know their way around a tour or two. This upcoming week-long excursion will find them starting out with their tour kickoff as part of XRAY.fm's benefit show and making their way down to the sunny skies of Los Angeles for a few shows, before stopping in Eugene on their way back up to Portland.

Check out Reptalien's tour dates below and be sure to see them off properly at Dig A Pony!


8/22 (XRAY.fm Benefit/Tour Kickoff) @ Dig A Pony w/ Lola Buzzkill, Psychomagic, SECRET HEADLINER TBA

8/25 @ Fort Funston (San Fransisco, CA)

8/26 @ The EggTooth (Oakland, CA) w/ The Classical, Golden Drugs

8/27 @ Ham & Eggs (Los Angeles, CA) w/ Susan, Tacoma Night Terror

8/28 @ Gnar Burger (Los Angeles, CA)

8/29 @ Hyperion (Los Angeles, CA) w/ Water Slice, Mikey Kampmann

8/30 @ Luckey's (Eugene, OR) w/ Surfs Drugs, VCR

Live Saturday: Psychomagic, The Rich Hands, Mean Jeans and Paul Collins Beat

If you still haven’t had a chance yet to swing by the Know’s massive, ten-day, ten-year anniversary party, you might want to make it a priority to attend Saturday night for some of the best rock and roll our fair city (and country) has to offer. Starting off the night is Psychomagic, whose psychedelic jams juxtapose against a surf-punk energy that’s sure to drive the room into a frenzy. Their recent release, Bad Ideas, captures this energy as best as any record can, yet to fully experience the garage-rock soul behind these songs you need to hear them live.

San Antonio’s Rich Hands are up next, and if their irresistible brand of power-pop is half as explosive in person as it is on their last release, Out of my Head, everyone will be in for a hell of a time. After the dust has cleared following Rich Hands' set, Mean Jeans will keep the party going with their uncontrollable punk rock spirit, which I can only describe as a most cheerful riot. If at this point, the first three bands haven’t completely destroyed the Know's tired building, then the legendary Paul Collins Beat will take the stage and show you exactly what 40+ years of experience crafting pure rock and roll music can produce. Help The Know ring in 10-years of slinging cheap beer and curating raw underground talent, by making this show your Saturday night experience, you won’t regret it.  

Written by Ben Toledo

Photo by Todd Walberg

Preview: Psychomagic at The Know 8.26

Psychomagic’s psych rock is playful and morbid, tinged with surf, punk, and vintage tone. From their textured instrumentation, it’s obvious this quintet (Stone Laurila (guitar), Eddie Bond (keyboards), Anthony Brisson (drums, backing vocals), Scott Page (bass), and Steve Fusco (lead vocals/guitar)) find their vibe on stage. Songs are strummy, but shift to  heavy riffs over soft, fast rhythms and theatrical melodies. Its catchy, but then drifts off and almost fades out during long interludes, allowing the listener to get lost in their own narrative before changing the scenery. Their range can be the softer “Mutated Love” after fast and raging “I Dont Want To Hold Your Hand”. Fusco warbles through songs, sometime crooning about playing the fool and being a “Heartbroken Teenage Zombie Killer”. It's tongue in cheek, he declares from the start that “I’m A Freak." Playing with the pining rock of Portland's Dandelyons, and Austin's Tele Novella, it should be a colorful Tuesday evening at The Know. 

- Brandy Crowe



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