01 Aug Helsing Junction Sleepover 2011: Pre-Festival Picks
Helsing Junction Sleepover Picks For Friday
The Pine Hill Haints
With a new record just around the corner, Alabama’s The Pine Hill Haints make a type of music that’s intimately detached. They rock in style. When exploring darker regions of alt-country and folk, they are the equivalent of a ’round-the-campfire ghost story, complete with hootin’ and hollerin’ spirits. When exploring the lighter, they are a whiskey-soaked backwoods romp, complete with the gentle pleasantries of accordions and washboard.
When a band is comprised of people with musical talent, it often shows effortlessly. Flexions have been making waves in Seattle with their genre-hopping musical style, and though it is a bit of a surprise to see them on the Helsing Junction bill, they are one band that is certainly worth watching. Their understanding of songwriting balance and instrumental control will make them one of the more dynamic acts of the Sleepover.
Joey Casio has been known to close out some dance nights at Helsing Junction with his punk rock-infused dance jams. If this year is anything like last year, expect showgoers up on stage next to Joey Casio himself, turning stage and lawn into one collectively insane dance party.
Helsing Junction Sleepover Picks For Saturday
Why I Must Be Careful
One that is wowed by musical prowess simply cannot praise Why I Must Be Careful enough. The duo, comprised of pianist Seth Brown and drummer John Niekrasz, are simply marvelous and unmatched, from their songwriting method — with notation stemming firstly from poetry — down to their execution, which, though chaotically structured, leaves slight room for improvisation.
Though not a K Records band, Brainstorm will be playing Helsing Junction again this year, showing the Portland duo’s uncanny ability to cheer up any crowd with their tropical-infused hyperpop jams. Perfect jams for any sunshine-filled afternoon on any farm or field in the Pacific Northwest.
Angelo Spencer Et Les Hauts Sommets
A recent opener for folk-metal sludge purveyors EARTH, Angelo Spencer is a Frenchman with swagger. His brand of folk-psych may not rub you the right way immediately, but it is hard to deny Spencer’s capability or energy; he weaves between rambling guitarwork and Afro-influenced fingerpicking without second-guessing himself. (Also notable is the whole band’s ability to hoe down like any Olympia-based musical outfit, but make sure to watch the drummer, for he is the most fascinating specimen.)
Arrington De Dionyso’s Malaikat Dan Singa
Arrington de Dionyso is commander of attention, an individual who puts on performances which can be seen repeatedly and enjoyed every time. A headliner from last year’s Helsing Junction, Dionyso, along with his Indonesian-language “pop” project Malaikat Dan Singa, will have you writhing and wriggling and clawing to dissonance and rhythm, all the while channeling age-old souls and memories from past lore.
Helsing Junction Sleepover Picks For Sunday
Born in Arkansas and based in Olympia, Kendl Winter uses piano and an assortment of string instruments to craft a musical landscape that incorporates bluegrass, indie folk, and country. It’s true that Winter plays shows on a bizarre circuit which includes many a Farmer’s Market, but don’t let this deter you. Her music and lyrics paint pictures of big sky surroundings, but these aren’t still life paintings your grandmother loves; these are soaked in bright colors not always found in nature.
The Hive Dwellers
The Hive Dwellers is an amalgamation of many a K Records signee, including Calvin Johnson (Halo Benders, Beat Happening), Fred Thomas (Saturday Looks Good To Me, City Center), Brian Weber (Dub Narcotic System, IQU, Chain And The Gang), and Brett Lyman (Saturday Looks Good To Me, Chain And The Gang). Seriously, if epic things are up your alley, you’d be in the right place if you saw this band.