Arthur & Yu Champagne Champagne Common Market D. Black Fences Fleet Foxes Grand Archives Head Like A Kite Hey Marseilles Imaginary Scoop J. Tillman Joshua Morrison Kinski Le Loup Mad Rad Moondoggies Mt. St. Helens Vietnam Band Pearly Gate Music Pica Beats Sera Cahoone Talbot Tagora The Blakes The Cave Singers The Maldives The Saturday Knights Visqueen

GIVE-ing season arrived this week — with a 30+ track local artist compilation

Fresh off the presses from our inboxes comes this week’s launch of GIVE — 30 downloadable tracks from a variety of Seattle artists, who are donating their songs to benefit Arts Corps and local area foodbanks. The $7.00 (!) compilation, which was produced, curated, and funded by Caffe Vita, will be available online here. Physical compilations can be picked up at all Caffe Vita locations, Easy Street Records, Sonic Boom Records, University Book Store, The Crocodile, EMP, Neumo’s, and Sorrento Hotel. The in-hand compilations will include a physical card with a redemption code for the download, and a prettied-up sleeve to make it a ready-to-give present.

Here’s the full track listing — nearly all of which are exclusive to the compilation:

Arthur & Yu: “Magic Mountain”
The Blakes: “Parking Lot”
Sera Cahoone: “Love’s Gonna Live Here”
The Cave Singers: “Growing Palm”
Champagne Champagne (feat. Fences): “Victim of the Modern Age”
Common Market: “The Picture of My Delorean Gray”
D. Black: “On the Go”
Fatal Lucciano: “Gangsta”
Fences: “Sadie”
Fleet Foxes: “Mykonos”
Grand Archives: “Wake Up”
Head Like a Kite: “Director’s Cut”
Hey Marseilles: “From a Terrace”
Kinski: “Whatever Happened to Madeleine Stowe”
Le Loup: “Forgive Me”
Mad Rad: “Love in a Strange World”
The Maldives: “In the End”
Gabriel Mintz: “Safeway”
Moondoggies: “Side of the Road”
Joshua Morrison: “Mammoth Cave”
Mt. St. Helens Vietnam Band: “Bitter Cold”
Pearly Gate Music: “Big Escape” [wow!]
The Pica Beats: “Durian Shakes”
The Saturday Nights: “Go!”
Talbot Tagora: “Ichthus Hop”
J. Tillman: “Earthly Bodies”
Visqueen: “Hand Me Down”

The best part of it all is that a full 100% of the sales will go directly to GIVE beneficiaries: Arts Corps, Ballard Food Bank, Rainier Valley Food Bank, University District Food Bank, and West Seattle Food Bank. The next-to-best part is that there’s more coming, by way of tracks from the Long Winters, Ben Gibbard, David Bazan, and the Dutchess and the Duke — purchasers will be notified as the tracks become available. To trump all of that, there will be a companion benefit concert featuring Grand Archives, D. Black, Grant Olsen of Arthur & Yu, Kinski, and a roster of other artists at the Crocodile on December 3rd for $15.00.

No matter which way you like it best, make sure to give some Seattle for the holidays! With a roster and a beneficiary list like this, you just can’t go wrong.

Arthur & Yu Barsuk El Vez Hardly Art Imaginary Scoop Light in the Attic Suicide Squeeze Throw Me the Statue Top Pot Unnatural Helpers

Chomp down at Light in the Attic's 3rd annual doughnut eating contest

mmm, doughnuts

Here is a little free association test for you: When you hear the expression “competitive eating,” what comes to mind?

If the answer wasn’t a Mexican Elvis impersonator, well, you’re probably not the only one, but it feels kind of appropriate, no?

Indie record label Light in the Attic is hosting their 3rd annual donut eating contest on Saturday, August 1st at 1p at Top Pot Doughnuts (5th Avenue location). This event is free to the public. There are a few fun and exciting changes this year for participants and cheerleaders alike, including the participation of four other record labels (Barsuk, Sub Pop, Suicide Squeeze, and Hardly Art).

The name of the game is doughnut eating, and apparently this will be a tag team-type affair. Volunteers from the audience will be selected at random and teamed up with one of the five label representatives to scoff down as many rings of fried deliciousness as possible.

As you sink into the inevitable diabetic coma that will result, should you be one of the lucky participants, you will be heralded into it with the sounds of El Vez, who will be MC’ing the event, as well as the Unnatural Helpers, Grant Olsen from Arthur and Yu, and Scott Reitherman from Throw Me the Statue, all of whom will be playing live and doing DJ sets.

Your victory, should you have an opportunity to seek it will not be easily won. “Billy the Fridge,” last year’s champion, will be returning to defend his Top Pot title, and will not hand it over without some serious competition. You will have to snatch it from his glaze-encrusted fingers!

Come hungry for victory, doughnut, and indie pop and make your Homer Simpson daydream come true!


Arthur & Yu Imaginary Scoop Throw Me the Statue

So excited for KEXP day in Ballard!

KEXP in BallardWhen you have a four-month old baby (as I do), getting out to see the live rock can be more than a bit tricky. You can imagine my delight when the rock comes to me… as it is, tomorrow.

For this Friday May 9th is KEXP in Ballard day! Because Ballard was the neighborhood that donated the most during the last pledge drive, we get all three daytime DJs (John Richards, Cheryl Waters, and Kevin Cole) broadcasting live in Ballard all day (John at Cafe Verite, and Cheryl and Kevin at Sonic Boom Records). Not only that, but KEXP will also be hosting many live broadcasts during the day. I'm particularly excited for Arthur & Yu (9a at Verite) and Throw Me the Statue (11a at Sonic Boom), and there are scads of other daytime shows too (Man Plus, Velella Velella, Cloud Cult, and more).

Plus the fun continues into the evening, with DJs at nearly every available space in Ballard and more live show goodness, with the Fucking Eagles, BOAT, Whalebones, the Maldives, and loads more.

Yay for KEXP! Yay for Ballard! Check out the specific times and locations below:

Stop by and if you see the pigtailed one carrying a wee girl, say hello. It's probably me.

Arthur & Yu Blitzen Trapper Fall of Troy Imaginary Scoop M. Ward New Faces

What Northwest bands are playing Bumbershoot 2008? Let the rumors begin…

It has come to my attention that people are very curious about what local Northwest bands will be playing at Bumbershoot this year (ahem, hi Mad Dog).

I've checked the official Bumbershoot website and have found:

  • M. Ward
  • Blitzen Trapper 
  • The Fall of Troy
  • Arthur & Yu
  • ADDED: New Faces

But I know they usually wait till closer to the date to annouce the lucky local acts. So — to that end, I propose a good ole fashioned imaginary rumor machine. Friends… Who have you heard is playing? Or who do you hope is playing?

Amy Winehouse Arthur & Yu Beirut BOAT Cloud Cult Grand Archives Imaginary Scoop Interpol John Vanderslice Jon Rauhouse Math and Physics Club Nicole Atkins Night Canopy Okkervil River Ragazza Scotland Yard Gospel Choir Shake Some Action! Shorthand for Epic Siberian Sleeping in the Aviary The Broken West The Cave Singers The Fratellis The Pipettes The Saturday Knights The Shaky Hands The Twilight Sad Throw Me the Statue Tullycraft

Best of 2007: imaginary Dana's picks

I have so many favorites for 2007 that narrowing the lists was tricky. Plus I’m preggo as a house and have NO memory at this point, so I’m sure I’ve inadvertently omitted some really great releases and songs. Forgive me and my wacked out hormones.

But that said, here are some Top of 2007 lists from me, to you. Feel free to leave comments both nasty and supportive. I likely deserve both for some of my erratic tastes.

The official results of the TIG Best NW Releases of 2007 Readers’ Poll are coming VERY soon… stay tuned! In the meantime, some of my personal picks for a wonderful year in music past:

Favorite Releases of 2007:

  1. Amy Winehouse Back to Black
  2. Okkervil River The Stage Names
  3. Tullycraft Every Scene Needs a Center
  4. Beirut The Flying Cup Club
  5. The Scotland Yard Gospel Choir The Scotland Yard Gospel Choir
  6. Shake Some Action Shake Some Action
  7. Math & Physics Club Baby I’m Yours
  8. John Vanderslice Emerald City
  9. The Cave Singers Invitation Songs
  10. The Fratellis Costello Music

Favorite Northwest Releases of 2007:

  1. Grand Archives Grand Archives
  2. Tullycraft Every Scene Needs a Center
  3. Shake Some Action Shake Some Action
  4. Cave Singers Invitation Songs
  5. Math & Physics Club Baby I’m Yours
  6. Siberian With Me
  7. Throw the Me Statue Moonbeams
  8. Arthur & Yu In Camera
  9. Night Canopy Of Honey and Country
  10. BOAT Let’s Drag Our Feet


Favorite Songs of 2007:

  1. Amy Winehouse “Love Is A Losing Game” and “Back to Black”
  2. Nicole Atkins “The Way It Is”
  3. Scotland Yard Gospel Choir “I Never Thought I’d Feel This Way for a Boy”
  4. Tullycraft “The Punks Are Writing Love Songs”
  5. Interpol “Heinrich Maneuver”
  6. Grand Archives “Southern Glass Home”
  7. Cloud Cult “Chemicals Collide”
  8. The Broken West “Down in the Valley”
  9. LCD Soundsystem “Someone Great”
  10. Sleeping in the Aviary “Another Girl”
  11. Lily Allen “LDN”
  12. Los Campesinos “You! Me! Dancing!”
  13. Throw Me the Statue “Lolita”
  14. Shake Some Action “Damaged”
  15. The Saturday Knights “45”
  16. Cave Singers “Seeds of Night”
  17. Siberian “Paper Birds”
  18. The Shaky Hands “Why and How Come”
  19. The Blakes “Don’t Bother Me”
  20. Night Canopy “Boom It’s Spring”
  21. The Pipettes “We Are the Pipettes”
  22. The Fratellis “Chelsea Dagger”
  23. John Vanderslice “The Parade”
  24. The Twilight Sad “That Summer, At Home I Had Become the Invisible Boy”
  25. Jon Rauhouse (and Rachel Flotard) “Harbor Lights”


Architecture in Helsinki Arthur & Yu Bright Eyes Caribou Chris Schlarb Dntel Gogol Bordello Imaginary Scoop Menomena New Atlantic

Best of 2007: Imaginary Kiku's favorite album art

Finding it much too difficult to decide upon my favorite albums this year, I’ve decided to go for a “best of” list that puts much more emphasis on physical appearances. These aren’t necessarily my favorite albums of 2007 (you can’t judge a CD by its cover), but I think they all deserve some recognition for the art pieces that decorate them. After all, there have been some pretty hideous covers this year.

10. “Twilight and Ghost Stories” by Chris Schlarb. I chose this one for its cute colors, bold lines, and its overall dreamy feeling.

Chris Schlarb's "Twilight and Ghost Stories"















9. “Super Taranta!” by Gogol Bordello. Although plenty of wacky collage-inspired album art has been attempted this year by bands such as the Go! Team and the Klaxons, I feel that only Gogol Bordello managed to pull off the abstract with style.

Gogol Bordello's "Super Taranta!"















8. Live at KEXP: Volume Three. Well, this is just cute. It’s been a good year for penguins.

Live at KEXP: Volume Three














7. “In Camera” by Arthur and Yu. I’m a big fan of the pop art era, and this cover is straight from the days of Warhol.

Arthur and Yu's "In Camera"















6. “Dumb Luck” by Dntel. Although Pitchfork described this cover as accurately capturing “the flaccidness of the music,” I disagree strongly. I think minimalism is back, and Dntel is ahead of the curve. As for the flaccidness of the music, well, that much may be true.

Dntel's "Dumb Luck"















5. “The Streets, the Sounds, and the Love” by New Atlantic. This album cover is just beautiful. It’s simple color scheme contrasts the fairly busy design nicely, creating a balance that really pleases the eye.

New Atlantic's "The Streets, the Sounds, and the Love"















4. “Cassadaga” by Bright Eyes. I’m going to get a beat-down from igLiz for this, but I really don’t care for Bright Eyes. Still I was won over by the astounding art on his newest album, which really can’t be properly appreciated on a website. The CD comes with a special decoder you can scan across the entire album, revealing hidden messages and pictures everywhere. Hours of fun!

Bright Eyes' "Cassadaga"















3. “Friend and Foe” by Menomena. This is the only record on my list which would also have been on my top 10 for music. Really, Menomena got this whole album pretty much perfect. Like Cassadaga, the true genius of this art can only be seen in person, but I think it translates here a little better than my number 4 pick. The art is astoundingly detailed, and is riddled with various song references, and even the Barsuk dog. The cover is full of holes through which the designs on the CD can be seen, allowing you to choose facial features (Mr. Potatohead style) for the creepy figures on the front.

Menomena's "Friend and Foe"















2. “Places Like These” by Architecture in Helsinki. This cover has so many elements I couldn’t possibly describe them all. The contrast between the old world below and the futuristic society above is represented by color, shape, and texture (they teach you things like that in high school art classes). Basically it’s a feast for the eyes, even without all the hidden meaning mumbo jumbo.

Architecture in Helsinki's "Places Like These"















1. “Andorra” by Caribou. I always hate picking the number one, because by this time I’ve praised everything else so highly, I’ve forgotten why I made this one my top pick. I guess I never really knew, just something about it made me fall in love. The bright yellows probably did it. It just looks like an explosion of happiness in my backyard.

Caribou's "Andorra"




















Arthur & Yu Imaginary Scoop J. Tillman Jens Lekman John Vanderslice Low Night Canopy Okkervil River The Cave Singers Throw Me the Statue Tiny Vipers

Best of 2007: Sarah Jo's picks

In absolutely no numeric order — I could never pick favorites with a list like this!


Looking at my non-list, I not only get warm fuzzies, but I also realize there’s perhaps two degrees of separation from each artist. For example, Throw Me the Statue is now labelmate to Jens Lekman on Secretly Canadian, and Okkervil River is nearly their “family” on sister label Jagjaguwar. Jenny Jimenez of Night Canopy took the photos for the album artwork on Cave Singers debut, and both bands feature members of (R.I.P.) Pretty Girls Make Graves. Low and Tiny Vipers can both be found on Sub Pop, while Arthur and Yu was released by their offshoot label Hardly Art.

As for Vanderslice, he recorded [and briefly appeared on] a previous Okkervil release at his studio, Tiny Telephone. J. Tillman’s current backing band features Casey Wescott of the Fleet Foxes, who played to a sold out Crocodile crowd with the Cave Singers on November 30th; the following night Tillman played the High Dive with Whalebones — a band featuring Amy Blaschke of Night Canopy. Phew!

Frighteningly enough, I could actually go on, but I believe my point has been proven. Perhaps the kinship and overlap in my top list could be construed negatively, a limited field of vision resulting in only seeing what is immediately in front of me. From my perspective, it’s just the opposite. While I do appreciate any number of bands, genres, and strange incestuous sub-sections, this is what I love. In 2012, these are the songs that will bring about the most visceral remembrances of five years prior, because this was my heavy rotation out of everything made available in the past year.

Arthur & Yu Bright Eyes Death Cab for Cutie Earlimart Imaginary Scoop Sea Wolf Sufjan Stevens The Magnetic Fields The Shins

Songs for an autumn mix

I don't know about anywhere else in the country, but autumn came late to New York this year, and now it's finally here just in time for Halloween.

So, obviously, I had to make an autumn mix. To me, autumn songs are a distinct class — they aren't as low and pensive as a winter song, but they're still quiet, and maybe just a little more hopeful.

I made a mix that has 53 songs and so far includes (among others) Magnetic Fields, Sufjan, Death Cab, Earlimart, Sea Wolf, The Shins, Arthur & Yu, and Bright Eyes… what would YOU put on an autumn mix? suggestions are welcome!

Arthur & Yu Gorge Amphitheater Incubus Live Show Review Modest Mouse Nada Surf The Thermals

Download Festival 2007, with Modest Mouse, Incubus, Nada Surf, Arthur & Yu, more

Download Festival 2007 at the Gorge in George, WA was a full-on packed event, with an eclectic mix of indie bands and loads of meet and greets too.

Check out a bit of the fun with a photo journal of the day. In no particular order, TIG brings you…


Modest Mouse

Modest Mouse shook up the main stage right on schedule about 9:30 Saturday night. Most striking to me (besides the realization that Modest Mouse actually exists… you get that kind of feeling after listening to a band for years before seeing them live) was Isaac Brock’s newly developed resemblance to Elliott Smith.

Despite the mass exodus of undoubtedly intoxicated college kids after the Incubus set, the anticipation of Modest Mouse’s set was palpable in the “treading-thin-ice-of-natural-disaster” eastern Washington air. Isaac Brock and company kicked the well responsive crowd into an extensive and joyous sing along/dance-off from square one. Nobody left this set disappointed or unsatisfied.

Modest Mouse at Download Festival 2007. Photo by Chona Kasinger.

Modest Mouse. Photo by Chona Kasinger.

Modest Mouse. Photo by Chona Kasinger.


Incubus heartthrob, Brandon Boyd, was welcomed to the stage by throngs of giddy girls. Much fist-thrusting and head-banging ensued through much of this Calabasas indigenous band. Radio hits and various other fan favorites such as “Drive” were performed, much to the glee of the young and shining audience.

Incubus. Photo by Chona Kasinger.

Incubus at Download Festival 2007. Photo by Chona Kasinger.

Incubus at Download Festival 2007. Photo by Chona Kasinger.


Arthur and Yu

A fellow photog friend at KEXP professed his “massive crush” on Yu of Seattle band Arthur and Yu early in the afternoon before their set. Arthur, with his could-be lumberjack good looks, and Yu, with her brazenly tattooed arms, rocked the Plaza Stage audience, which included Kathy and Hutch of the Thermals (more on them coming soon).

Arthur and Yu at Download Festival 2007. Photo by Chona Kasinger.

Arthur and Yu at Download Festival 2007. Photo by Chona Kasinger.

Arthur and Yu at Download Festival 2007. Photo by Chona Kasinger.

Nada Surf

Barsuk all-stars, Nada Surf, enjoyed long lines at their Plaza side stage meet and greet. Even I, after saying hi to Matthew (MASSIVE CRUSH), swapping a couple words, and getting a peck on the cheek, could hardly contain myself as I walked away with what I was sure to be the most ridiculous grin and thin semblance of composore.

Later in the afternoon, the Seattle favorites rocked the masses with their awe-inspiring set. They played old favorites like "Blizzard of ’77" and "Hi-Speed Soul" and many more, including songs from their next album, scheduled for release in January of 2008. Though I’m certainly no stranger to Nada Surf live shows (Saturday was my sixth time seeing those lovely fellows live), the magic their songs possess never wear out.

Nada Surf at Download Festival 2007. Photo by Chona Kasinger.

Nada Surf at Download Festival 2007. Photo by Chona Kasinger.

Nada Surf at Download Festival 2007. Photo by Chona Kasinger.

The Presidents of the United States of America

These punky, middle aged white dudes from Seattle packed some punch! The antics of The Presidents of the USA certainly garnered much thrill and excitement from the crowd as they did the photographers. This set was a blast! Total melee, and I’m finding more and more how much I adore my job of shooting these kinds of bands.

First, it was beach balls, moshers, and flying keyboard stands at Capitol Hill… now it's beer/water/x liquid sloshing, and random massages from audience members. Even getting a can of Pabst to the face earlier in during the set was mildly… frickin’ awesome. I almost tripped over a kneeling photographer twice during the set, and was trampled by countless security guards through the trajectory of the set trying to keep the seemingly rabid fans at bay. MEDIA VIOLENCE, I’m telling you! Worrying about crowd surfers falling on my head at any moment definitely made my job more excitable. The Presidents had most definitely awakened from their five year slumber and not a soul in the audience must have doubted their indelible presence.

Presidents of the United States of America. Photo by Chona Kasinger.

Presidents of the United States of America. Photo by Chona Kasinger.

The Thermals

The Thermals bravely fielded questions posed at the Plaza side stage before their set. I think that if Kathy and Hutch dated, it would be the absolutely cutest rock pairing ever. {ed note: Chona, you're right, and I'm pretty sure they already have! ~igDana} The chemistry between the band members was salient throughout their whole set as the avidly screaming fans (the front row largely consisting of “DUDE I LOVE THIS BAND” college guys with their girlfriends) sang their approval. The Thermals put on one of the most energetic punk rock shows I've seen.
These guys are big, but I feel they’re gaining more and more rock star momentum every time I see them.

The Thermals at Download Festival 2007. Photo by Chona Kasinger.

The Thermals at Download Festival 2007. Photo by Chona Kasinger.

The Thermals at Download Festival 2007. Photo by Chona Kasinger.

The Thermals at Download Festival 2007. Photo by Chona Kasinger.

All in all, Download Festival 2007 was a hugely successful day for me, and I know I'm not the only one. To see all photos from the event, check out the complete Flickr photo set.

Arthur & Yu Imaginary Scoop The Album Leaf

Tonight's Recommended Show: The Album Leaf, Under Byen, and Arthur & Yu at Neumo's

Tonight's show at Neumo's is a must see for post-rock/ambient fans, as headliner The Album Leaf will surely put on one beautiful show. With multi-instrumental layering, prolific artist James LaValle and his supporting band create full-bodied moving pieces. This tour is in support of his latest work, Into the Blue Again, and according to his website includes projection art and a live string section.

Local openers Arthur & Yu will set the mood with their intimate, down-tempo indie-folk. In the middle is Danish band, Under Byen, who fit in quite nicely with their own symphonic rock.