Preview: Summer Meltdown 2012 Friday August 10th
The Biggest Little Festival in the PNW is back, August 10-11Posted by Lindsey Bluher
Summer Meltdown, the self proclaimed “Biggest Little Festival” in the Pacific Northwest is back for its 12th year – this weekend August 10th-12th. Please take note: Summer Meltdown’s line up is the best its ever looked! If you haven’t heard of this festival before, it’s the sort that only happens in the PNW – four stages set up in the middle of the woods about an hour and a half outside of Seattle in a town you’ve probably never heard of – Darrington, Wash.
Held at Whitehorse Mountain Amphitheater, this years festival has put the previous 11 to shame. The festival features local and nationally touring acts that span genres, resulting in a lineup that has something for just about any listener. Also, even though this is a music festival, there are activities like cabaret and belly dancing. Below you’ll find a few bands to make sure to check out Friday when you finish setting up your tent and party the weekend away at one of Washington’s best festivals. Tickets are still available here, buy them now and we’ll see you there this weekend!
12:45 – Snug Harbor
This funk group from Bellingham is one that I personally have a long history with. Snug Harbor is one of the first bands to introduce me to horns in a live setting, and for that I am forever thankful. Front man Will Glazier will show you how to work a crowd from behind a trumpet, while the rest of his band gives you a beat and a bass line that makes staying stationary next to impossible. If you’re not typically a funk fan, or if you’re new the genre, Snug Harbor will surely prove to be a great introduction. They take funk fundamentals and run with them, creating something that appeals to just about anyone. They’re a fun band to watch perform, which each band member truly coming alive behind their instrument. They’re playing early in the day, but they’re one of the bands that makes it worthwhile to ditch work early and start your weekend sooner rather than later.
6:10 – El Ten Eleven
Starting the evening’s roster is El Ten Eleven. This band is one that will ease you into a night of music, playing songs that are smooth and trickle into your eardrums. It’s music to bask in and cool off to, which under the summer sun is sure to leave you feeling refreshed and calmed. They combine drums, bass, and electronic guitar that doesn’t thump so much as it massages. Their music is bright without being over the top, and it won’t jar your senses. This instrumental rock pair from LA is melodic without the need for a melody, and will delight listeners in this outdoor setting. Plus, with song titles like “Triangle Face” and “I Like Van Halen Because My Sister Says They’re Cool,” this band is sure to be entertaining live.
7:30 – Blitzen Trapper
Seattlites may claim to hate Portland, but we always give their brews and bands a fair shot when they’re worth while. And as much as people love Deschutes, they seem to love Blitzen Trapper even more. Their latest album, American Goldwing, epitomizes americana rock. This band is a rather timeless one and appeals to listeners across ages because their music is so familiar sounding – the songwriting is funky, they add elements from country and funk in some songs, with a heart and soul of rock and roll infused in each verse. This band has been getting acclaim left and right for a reason. Blitzen Trapper’s music captures an era and brings it to a modern audience. They introduce crowds to songs that cross genres while holding their roots in a sound that will strike a chord with anyone who has ever seen pictures of wheat fields or taken a road trip through a ghost town.
10:40 – Karl Denson’s Tiny Universe
Some people may disagree, but there’s really no such thing as too much funk on a summer night. Karl Denson’s Tiny Universe is soulful funk music that will make you want to dance. Perhaps even swing dance if you know how. Denson’s songs are catchy and downright fun – what better way is there to celebrate the start of a long weekend of good music in the woods? His music would be just as home in the 1950s as it is in today’s funk scene, and is the sort that would get anyone bobbing around a dance floor if it were to come from the jukebox, so I can only imagine what the crowd is going to be doing when they hear this band live. Some songs have more of a Motown pop feel to them, while others come off as straight funk. All around though, Karl Denson’s Tiny Universe make music that makes a listener feel sexier as it takes control of your hips. Make sure you find someone to dance with during this set, this is sultry music and will leave a listener feeling electric.