Tonight in Seattle:  

Slowdive Returns Next Week with Special Guest Low

Slowdive, courtesy of Slowdive's Facebook Page

{Photo courtesy of Slowdive's Facebook page}

It has been twenty-one years since Slowdive last performed in Seattle in August of 1993, where they were supporting that year's magnificent opus Souvlaki. Within a few years, Slowdive would no longer exist. In early 1995, the band released the equally compelling and experimental Pygmalion before being dropped almost immediately by Creation Records, a move that officially lowered the curtain on the group.

However, in the nineteen years that have passed, the members have remained impressively active. Neil Halstead and Rachel Goswell immediately moved on and started the much more organic and primarily acoustic Mojave 3, who released their first album, Ask Me Tomorrow, in 1995, and have been active ever since. Halstead and Goswell have also released solo records and been involved in various side projects over the years. Last year’s Stars Are Our Home by Halstead’s group Black Hearted Brother was the first chance to hear him perform psychedelic electric music since 1995.

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Vök releasing Tension October 21

For the last year or so, Vök have been building more tension in Reykjavík than the Holuhraun Volcano, but they’ve been hard to find Stateside until now. Their debut EP, Tension, is getting a North American release in October, and the band will follow up with a tour (you can be sure we’ll let you know if they make it to Seattle).

Formed only last year, Vök wear their influences on their sleeves; the xx is strong in this one. Comparisons to The Knife, Poliça, and Sóley are not out of place either. But like any talented musicians, Vök make these elements their own. Vök is a trio consisting of guitar, saxophone, and keys. This and precocious songwriting help the final product stand alone as a dark electronic dream - a winning combination of beautiful melodies and eerie atmosphere.

Keep an eye out for their five-song EP on October 21, but in the meantime, enjoy a video of the band performing their single, "Við vökum" at the KEXP Showcase at Airwaves 2013 above.

Watch the whole performance after the jump ...

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Gone Girl

{Gone Girl opens in Seattle on Friday, 10/2 – with some screenings Thursday evening at the Regal Meridian, The Big Picture Seattle, Sundance Cinemas Seattle, and The Majestic Bay}

Firstly: I am one of “those people” who ripped through Gillian Flynn’s Gone Girl novel in record time, gasping the entire way and freaking out over every last sordid, surprising detail—so when they announced the Gone Girl movie adaptation was underway and that David Fincher was directing it, I WAS THRILLED. Hell, even when they announced my least favorite actor in the entire world was playing the male lead, I was still pretty thrilled. If anyone can play an unlikeable husband, it’s surely Ben Affleck.

Secondly: I don’t want to ruin anything with those damned spoilers, BUT. I am also one of “those people” who got kind of upset when it was leaked that they had changed the ending, with Flynn reportedly rewriting the whole third act for the screenplay, because I feel like it’s pretty essential to the story. What I will say is: fear not, faithful lovers of the novel, because the film does actually follow the book pretty closely.

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Tusk

Michael Parks as Howard Howe in Kevin Smith's Tusk

{TUSK officially opens in Seattle on Friday, 9/19 – but there are some Thursday night showings starting at 8pm! Screening at Regal Meridian 16 and Oak Tree Cinemas}

A horror movie from Kevin Smith? Based on one of his smodcasts? About a guy who lures unsuspecting victims to his home in order to turn them into … walruses? 

Yup. Tusk is all of those things. And while the premise IS ridiculous, the first two-thirds are actually pretty terrifying, and then it all falls apart thanks to a cameo by a high-profile star who really, really, really loves to wear fake noses and adopt funny accents.

At the start, we meet podcaster Wallace Bryton (Justin Long). Wallace is kind of a douche; his “Not-see Party” podcasts are built around making fun of unfortunate souls on the internet—like a boy who cuts his own leg off with a sword—in which he travels to meet them in person and then comes back home, describing his adventures to his podcasting buddy, Teddy Craft (Haley Joel Osment).

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Noise for the Needy 2014: the last goodbye

If you haven’t heard the news already, we hate to be the ones to break it to you. But here it goes – Noise for the Needy is ending. Not for the month or this year, like FOREVER. This Friday and Saturday will be the 10th and final installment of this epically generous and wonderful charity music fest that has continuously chosen to feature local music across all genres. 10 years, 350 artists, $125,000 raised, 20 + beneficiaries. Forget baseball, those are some impressive stats.

NFTN is going balls-out into retirement, giving Seattle one of their best lineups as a goodbye present. And Ballard is lucky enough to play host this go 'round with shows spread around several venues, including the Tractor and Conor Byrne. I’m overwhelmed just thinking about the list of talent participating in NFTN 2014, so I’m gonna simplify and focus on some of my favorites:

The Helio Sequence makes reliable, nice, pretty music. That is not a bad thing. Their 2012 album, Negotiations, is a go-to for a variety of clutch situations – first date, housewarming dinner party, or Sunday afternoon parent brunch. I, for one, appreciate consistency of form and the comfort of delicate alt-pop surrounding me like a warm hug. Big and glittery and stuffed full with soaring choruses, their songs have more mesmerizing appeal than Sharknado.

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