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SASQUATCH! 2015 Launch Party: anticipation rewarded

TacocaT at SASQUATCH! Launch Party (Photo by Christine Mitchell)

TacocaT at SASQUATCH! Launch Party (Photo by Christine Mitchell)

The highly anticipated  SASQUATCH! 2015 lineup has been announced, and includes Modest Mouse, St. Vincent, The Decemberists, Kendrick Lamar, and Robert Plant. To celebrate the big announcement, the Neptune Theater hosted the launch party, with locals The Young Evils and TacocaT, and Ty Segall playing, and comedian Chris Gethard hosting.

Gethard set off the show with a bit of side-splitting banter, proclaiming that everyone loves free stuff “no matter how sucky it is.” So, he offered up whatever junk was in his pockets, including a Nature Valley granola bar. But the crowd still went wild – because, well – free stuff.  If this was just a taste of what Gethard is going to bring to Sasquatch, then everyone is in for a treat.

The Young Evils were up first, and their accessible ’80s-inspired pop-rock was a perfect way to get the room pumped. Because while most people came to see the bands, a lot of people were also anxious to find out who will be playing at Sasquatch. So having bands like the Young Evils and TacocaT setting off the show was perfect planning on their part. Everyone got to dance out their jitters. Plus, it turned out that the Young Evils was the only band that night to actually play the festival, so it was a good preview for new fans.

After a little tease from Mackenzie Mercer about revealing the lineup during the first intermission,  Gethard set the record straight, assuring the crowd that they’d have to wait until after TacocaT for the big announcement. Thankfully, TacocaT is such a fun and ridiculous band that their set of 2-3 minute songs about catcalling, periods, and seasonal affective disorder went by almost too fast.

Then came the big moment – where everyone took out their phones to either film the lineup video or immediately start tweeting out the lineup to all their followers. They wanted to beat the big outlets while losing their cool about every single act on the lineup. This year’s festival will include national acts like Run the Jewels, Lana Del Rey, Spoon, Sharon Van Etten, Tame Impala, Benjamin Booker, Flume, James Blake, Chromeo, Hot Chip, Little Dragon, Gogol Bordello, Father John Misty, Jose Gonzales, Jenny Lewis, Twenty One Pilots, Real Estate, Royal Blood, Dilated Peoples, Future Islands, Milo Greene, Schoolboy Q, and the Glitch Mob. Some locals that made it this year are Fences, My Goodness, Black Whales, Sam Lachow, Grynch, Smokey Brights, Rose Windows, The Maldives, Manatee Commune, Thunderpussy, and Perfume Genius. The full lineup is listed below.

To close out the launch party, Ty Segall stepped out on stage solo with an acoustic guitar, quite different from his usual fare. Unfortunately for Segall, a lot of people cleared out after the lineup was announced, and the rest of the people were still buzzing about who they were most excited about. So, his one-man acoustic performance wasn’t quite enough to hold everyone’s attention. He wasn’t bad, just rather anticlimactic after the big announcement and an otherwise high-energy show. Perhaps Segall will be added to the lineup later so he can get a proper Seattle crowd.

Other than that, the lineup this year definitely did not disappoint – though there hasn’t really ever been a disappointing Sasquatch lineup, so good on festival founder Adam Zacks for consistently meeting expectations. Be sure to get tickets early for the May 22-25 event, because it will certainly sell out.

Abby Williamson is a photographer, writer, and video blogger with a passion for live music – especially the local scene. She recently moved to Seattle after commuting from Gig Harbor for shows an average of once a week for five years, so she’s happy to not have to drive as much and photograph even more concerts! When she’s not elbowing her way up to the front row at a show or sorting through thousands of photos of those shows, Abby also does freelance wedding photography, all the while cultivating a decent-sized following on YouTube. Abby has contributed to several music blogs over the last five years (and she’s really excited to join the SMI team!), and has been published in at least one album booklet for the band, Someone Still Loves You Boris Yeltsin. She would like people to know that while music photography and writing is a huge passion in her life – she is a fan first, photographer second.