94/7 Birthday Bash – Photos

94/7 Birthday Bash
OMSI Waterfront

On the weekend of August 13th and 14th, Portland alternative radio station 94/7 fm threw their annual birthday bash celebration on the waterfront near OMSI. The lineup this year featured names such as AWOLNATION, KONGOS, Robert Delong, and more. Despite the heat and cramped venue, the radio station and bands involved came together to throw a memorable party and great weekend fest for fans. On the Sunday of the fest, photographer Emma Davis captured shots of the day’s artists. View her photos below, and read the full review of the weekend festival at Vortex Magazine.

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After the Tour: A Look Back on Hunter Hunted

Photo by Ashley Owings

Photo by Ashley Owings

Back in July, Hunter Hunted made a stop at Portland’s Hawthorne Theater for an energetic night of indie pop alongside Dreamers and local band Redcast

After about a month on the road, Young Rising Sons and Hunter Hunted just recently wrapped up their co-headlining North American Tour. Last month, Portland was treated to a date at the Hawthorne, but due to unfortunate circumstances, Young Rising Sons had to drop off the Portland date. Luckily, Hunter Hunted were there to save the day.

Coming up to the venue on that hot afternoon, a good amount of people were on site, looking forward to seeing Hunted Hunted and Dreamers hold their own. A couple of groups hadn’t gotten the memo of Young Rising Sons’ absence, opting to get their ticket refunded by the venue and head back home.

For those of us who stayed, we were treated to quite the show right off the bat, as soon as Redcast took the stage at 8:00. Not too many people were familiar with this local group, but after the set they delivered, their fan base had grown. Redcast gave us a set of solid original material, as well as the crowd favorite cover of Foster the People’s “Pumped Up Kicks.”

From the murmur in the crowd, it seemed like many people were looking forward to seeing Dreamers. I personally hadn’t heard much from them, but after their set, I was thoroughly impressed. Dreamers sound brings images of classic 80s pop synth to mind, mixed with the indie pop rock both Hunter Hunted and Young Rising Sons perfect so well.

Aside from the YRS fans that made the unfortunate mistake of bailing, the crowd was completely psyched to see the night’s headliner, Hunter Hunted. Hunter Hunted was last in Portland opening up for Smallpools headline set at the Wonder. If that set was any measure of their capabilities as live performers, they were about to far surpass the bar they’d set.

Hunter Hunted’s secret weapon that had me absolutely captivated goes by the name of Morgan Paros. Incorporating live violin into Hunter Hunted’s indie pop created a stunning and very unique brand of music that grips you at the start. This aspect in sound iced with the energy brought to the stage in movement and crowd response made for a wholly unforgettable set that the entire room fell head-over-heels for.

Though the absence of Young Rising Sons didn’t go unnoticed, Portland was forever grateful Hunter Hunted took the time to play for us despite their tour mates circumstances. We hope their return will be swift.

Sterling Fox – Interview

IMG_9925Thanks to various reader suggestions, indie/alt has had the opportunity to talk to a lot of up-and-coming artists recently. We started with ARMORS, the SoCal alternative band that wowed us with their singles “Parasite” and “Old House”. Now, Sterling Fox joined us for a little conversation about his career as a songwriter, as well as his solo career, which produced the brand new track, “Freak Caroline”.

When we first got wind that we would have the opportunity to chat with Sterling, excitement was the first reaction. Though it may not be a well-known fact, Sterling Fox is the mind behind a lot of your favorite songs. He’s written and produced for artists like Lana Del Rey (“Video Games”), Alex Winston (“Fingers and Toes”), Lindsey Sterling (“Roundtable Rival” and “Ascendance”), and Boyz II Men (“What Happens in Vegas”).

So, having the chance to talk to this brilliant mind was something we could not pass up. We asked Sterling about his earliest inspirations, songwriting secrets, and upcoming projects in his solo career.

ARMORS – Band Interview

IMG_1840 (1)NOTE: Since the publication of this article, the band has shrunk from a 5-piece down to three. The photo for this article has been changed at the band’s request, and the members have been noted below. Please enjoy this new this new track from ARMORS. Thanks for reading!
You all know we’re always looking for new music. indie/alt accepts new

suggestions on what to listen to like generous tips. If you know someone we don’t, please. Go to our About page and send us a name.

Recently, we’ve gotten a few we just had to check out. ARMORS is one of the latest. In the email we received, we were told ARMORS was a SoCal band who had worked with none other than Adam Castilla on their latest single, “Parasite”. The song was also mastered by Brian Lucey, who’s worked with Arctic Monkeys and The Black Keys. A definite bonus.

“Parasite” was the first track we listened to. It’s no wonder the song got over 10,000 plays in less than a week after it’s premiere on KROQ. It’s amazing! It’s a jam! And you can listen to it here.

After going through a little more of ARMORS music, we decided it was time to have a chat with them. We asked them a few questions about their band, their process, their music, and more.

Hozier w/ Asgeir – Concert Review

Hozier w/ Asgeir
Crystal Ballroom

FullSizeRenderIt’s only the beginning of 2015, and it’s already been a huge year for Irish songwriter Andrew Hozier-Byrne. Hot off a performance with Annie Lenox at this year’s Grammy Awards (at which he was nominated for Song of the Year), Hozier made his way to Portland for his first official all ages gig in our city.

Tickets for the show only took about a week to sell out, and the sold out crowd showed themselves in full last Friday. The venue was packed, and everyone in the house was beyond psyched to see the man himself cleanse us with his blues.

The night began with Icelandic opener Asgeir. Playing with airy alternative vibes while keeping in line with Hozier’s folky aura, Asgeir played a very mellow opening set. The music was relaxing, with moments of more upbeat tones. Most of the music Asgeir creates falls along the electronic spectrum, in contrast with Hozier’s sole bluesy guitar. Besides these differences, Asgeir proved to be a well-matched act for Hozier, but it was Hozier’s performance the audience was hungry for. Continue reading

London Grammar w/ Until The Ribbon Breaks – Concert Review

London Grammar w/ Until The Ribbon Breaks
Roseland Theater

IMG_5114A week ago, Portland was finally graced with the presence of London Grammar. After being postponed for almost a year, the English trio played a sold out set at the Roseland Theater.

Before the band played the night’s full set, they stopped in at the Skype Live Studio (formerly the Bing Lounge) to play a short set for Kink. Even without the full sound, Hannah Reid and the rest of LG sounded astounding! Their music really is the kind to give you goosebumps. It’s smooth, elegant, emotional, and slow. Beautiful is a good word to sum it up.

After this set, it was over to Roseland Theater for the full set later in the evening.

I had a bit of a crisis close to door time at this show. About an hour before they were to let people in, I realized my tickets had been stolen. Luckily, the staff at the Roseland were very helpful and understanding, and let us in for the show with an order confirmation. To the person that picked them out of my pocket, why? To the person who may have bought my tickets off said guy, hope you enjoyed the show! Moral of the story: don’t keep your tickets in your back pocket. Continue reading

Best of Portland 4 – Concert Review

First of all, apologies on being so late on this review. Now, let’s get down to it.

A couple of weeks back, the School of Rock hosted, for the fourth year, an amazing night for local music. Best of Portland, for those not familiar, is a show hosted at a venue in PDX (this year, the Wonder) that features many of Portland’s best bands playing their songs with the talented kids of the School of Rock. Essentially, it is two hours of local music, cramming 20+ bands into a one-night musical extravaganza.

As I said last year, reviewing this big of a show in its whole is a near impossible task. So, it’s in these times that we must look well upon the always trustworthy “favorite moments of…” overview.

Continue reading

Superhighway w/ Jesus Miranda – Concert Review

Superhighway w/ Jesus Miranda
Velo Cult Bicycle Shop

IMG_4760A bicycle shop? This was probably your first thought. It was mine when I first found out the location for the special “Secret Show” by local band and friends of indie/alt, Superhighway. “Why on Earth would a band play a gig at a bike shop?”

Well, if you’re not familiar with Velo Cult, let me introduce you. Velo Cult is a bike shop, yes, but it is also: a concert venue, a bar, a coffee shop, a movie theater, a comedy club, etc. etc. It is the Buckaroo Banzai of locations. In essence, it is Portland. It’s features include a communion table made out of an old bowling lane, a castle drawbridge as a stage, and bikes and bike parts decorating every wall.

Now on to the show. You all know Superhighway. If you don’t, you’re probably not a frequent reader. In that case, welcome! This is Superhighway. They are Eli Hirsch and Quincy Saunders, two guys from Portland that play some of the danciest, most fun and energetic indie pop you can find. Though they have yet to release an official EP or album (one is on the way soon), they are infamous for their legendary live shows. It is common for concert-goers at a Superhighway show to go absolutely “apeshit”.  Continue reading

KOPPS – Band Interview

10277840_632273933494936_1879159830264212083_n“Attention! An emergency has been reported in this building. Please cease operations and leave the building… NOPE!”

This is just one of my favorite lines pulled from a KOPPS song. If you don’t know KOPPS, you’re probably about to discover your new favorite band. Thought I’d just give you a heads up.

I recently discovered this electro-pop band with the help of Spotify’s Indie Pop playlist. As soon as I heard the opening to their track, “Dumb”, I was hooked. The bass drop just kicked me deeper into my growing obsession.

Looking up this little-known band, I discovered just how talented KOPPS is. They have two recent singles, “Dumb” and “Temperature”, both of which are some of the best electronic pieces I’ve heard, as well as a previously released EP, titled Fuck Jams, that lives up to everything else.

If you don’t know KOPPS solo work, you’d probably know one of their collaborations. Joywave’s “Tongues” was co-created by KOPPS, and features their signature electronic dance vibes. If you like the bass line in Tongues, you’re gonna love KOPPS’ solo work.

Let me stop rambling on now, and get to the point. In order for me to 100% fall in love with an artist, I have to first fall in love with their personalities. It was just a matter of reaching out to the band and having a little conversation to kick me head-over-heels.

I asked KOPPS some questions on what they do, how they do it, and why they do it. The basic questions you’d ask any band. They took my questions, and twisted them apart. Watch KOPPS sass me below (in the best possible way)…

Continue reading

Summer Cannibals: Show Us Your Mind – Album Review + Band Interview

coverYou all remember Summer Cannibals. The CHVRCHES opener that melted all our faces. The number one act at last year’s PDX Pop Now! The local band that blew minds. How cool would it be if somebody got to listen to their new album, Show Us Your Mind (out March 3rd), and eat sandwiches with them while talking about it? Wait… I’m getting news… this just in!

indie/alt did that. A few weeks ago, we came into possesion of an unmastered, and unreleased, copy of Summer Cannibals’ sophomore release. Last week, we met up at Portland’s Bunk Bar to divulge on the new record, and what exactly the band has been doing since the last time we saw them.

Since PDX Pop Now! back in July, Summer Cannibals have undergone some massive changes.

“We had to replace our rhythm section,” says leading woman, Jessica Boudreaux. “So we have a new bass player and a new drummer.”

For the bands run with their first record, No Makeup, Summer Cannibals was filled with members Jessica Boudreaux, Marc Swart, Lynnae Gryffin, and Valerie Brogden. Now, Gryffin and Brogden have parted ways, and their places were filled with new Cannibals, Jenny Logan and Devon Shirley. Despite the changes, Summer Cannibals are still going strong.

“Everything’s good,” says Swart. “We’re looking toward the future.” Continue reading