This past weekend The Capitol Hill Block Party took over the streets of Seattle’s always-hip Capitol Hill neighborhood. Despite the weather some minor technical stage issues, the three day festival was nothing short of awesome. As with any respectable festival, this weekend’s lineup featured a wide array of sounds from hip-hop, punk, and good ol’ rock and roll. And although there was some initial some of the criticism that this year’s festival lineup was slightly lackluster, the overall performance quality from all the bands definitely exceeded the expectations.
Friday’s mainstage lineup was tough to beat. Up first, Seattle’s own Flavr Blue and Sub Pop signed hip-hop group, Shabazz Palaces took the stage and got the crowd pumped with some of the Emerald city’s finest beats. The evening lineup did not disappoint either. Kicking off the night, the main stage crowd was filled in anticipation from back-to-back performances from Broods, Jamie xx, Built to Spill and headliner, TV On The Radio. Despite the fact that Jamie xx and Built to Spill hail from completely different ends of the music (and age) spectrum, the crowd showed great support none the less.
During the final performance of the night, TV On The Radio began their set with a little-known classic, “Young Liars” off of one of their first EPs also titled Young Liars—a much appreciated surprise for any long time fans. The band night ended on a high note as they shook things up with a handful the band’s more well known jams such as “Wolf Like Me” and “Happy Idiot”.
Saturday featured a fun blend of music that included a healthy turn out from the indie rock and electronica communities. Indie bands such as Toro Y Moi, Wye Oak, Ivan and Alyosha seamlessly played alongside an eclectic mix of electronica artists such as Kodak to Graph, Giraffage and Com Truise to amazing effect..
The favorite performances, however, showcased some of the festival’s best rock performances from headliners, The Kills, and a great underdog performance by the three piece all girl rock outfit, The Coathangers. With equal parts energy and attitude both of these bands took a strong command of both the main and Vera stages respectively. Armed with aggressive reverb-laden guitar riffs and booming drums, both acts definitely made their mark with two outstanding and memorable performances.
If there’s one thing that Seattle is known for its rain, and Sunday proved to be one of the wettest days of the summer so far with heavy rain for several hours during the middle of the day. Fortunately, all of the bands were still able to perform with only a handful of minor set-backs. Despite the weather, bands such as DIIV, Flatbush Zombies, Father John Misty, and headliners, Ratatat made all of the previous hours in the rain worth every minute.
Possibly the most talked about performance of the day was Flatbush Zombies. Famous for their high-energy antics, this New York hip-hop trio took the stage by storm (pun intended) and had the everyone in the pit on their feet jumping and screaming lyrics along to the beat. Meechy Darko, one of the group’s main rappers went crazy working the pit—at one point even jumping directly into the middle of the crowd.
The festival wrapped up with a killer performance from Ratatat who put on amazing light show complete with lasers, smoke and a two panel visuals display flanking the left and right sides of the stage. If you haven’t seen them before try to catch them soon because they are sure to put on one hell of a show.
Built to Spill
Father John Misty
Ivan and Alyosha
Kodak to Graph
The Wooden Sky
Toro Y Moi
TV on the Radio