Seattle – Summer is almost in full swing, and with the change comes my favorite seasonal activity- block parties. Growing up, “block party” meant water balloon fights, watermelon slices, cornhole, and s’mores, but since moving to Seattle I’ve learned that the only block party worth attending is Capitol Hill Block Party.
The three-day music festival lasts July 25th through 27th, and will feature 100 acts across four stages, including the newly expanded Vera Stage: an all-ages outdoor space with national and local artists.
“The expanded Vera Stage is a direct result of feedback from Block Party attendees,” said Jason Lajeunesse, the festival’s owner and producer, in a press release. “For the last couple years, about half of the national acts played the 21 and over Neumos stage, which meant some people missed out. This year, we’re making the incredible lineup of national acts available to everyone.”
National acts include Matt and Kim, Spoon, The War on Drugs, Dum Dum Girls, and A$AP Rocky, but CHBP also boasts noteworthy performances by many local favorites and up-and-coming artists. Check out some of our picks below.
Following a great appearance at Sasquatch! Festival, Dude York will be sure to rock the Capitol Hill Block Party with their bratty, rockin’ punk-pop. The three-piece released their LP Dehumanize back in February to solid reviews, and have been a Seattle favorite for a while. Dude York will be playing the Neumos Stage on Sunday, July 27, at 2:15 p.m.
Hip-hop/rap/electronic artist Katie Kate is one of the most exciting artists coming out of Seattle’s new music scene. Her fusion of genres; her defiant, self-assured lyrics; her flow and her general badassery make the 27-year-old a standout performer. Watch out for Katie Kate’s new album Nation, due August 5, and catch her on the Vera Stage on Saturday, July 26, at 5 p.m.
Reed Juenger, Jordan Koplowitz, and Tom Eddy have been crafting indie/electro-pop tunes since 2010, and released their debut LP The Palace Garden in 2012. The group titled themselves after an LCD Soundsystem track, and we’re eager to hear new things from them. If their new song “Hesitation” is any indication, we should expect to hear a broader influence of genres such as disco and Afro-funk, mature musicality, and a catchy, danceable set. Watch Beat Connection at CHBP on the Main Stage on Saturday, July 26, at 7:30 p.m.
“Though always a folk-pop songwriter, what makes [Cataldo lyricist and core member Eric] Anderson unique is that when he puts on his serious face, the emphasis falls on the pop rather than the folk.Anderson tackles major lyrical themes while also arriving at a downright danceable sound. On [new album] Gilded Oldies, Anderson transcends the satisfactory and shoots to thrill. He has irrevocably upped the ante.” – Zac Coe
Cataldo will play the Vera Stage on Sunday, July 27, at 3 p.m.
Started in 2008 as a composition project of students at Cornish College of the Arts, the Seattle seven-piece evokes disparate sounds from African trance and Americana to classical music. Pollens’ songs are polyrhythmic, beautifully textured, captivating, and show true musicianship; what else would you expect from Cornish students? Check them out when they play CHBP on the Neumos Stage at 9 p.m.
Crowd photo by Jim Bennett
With degrees in journalism and music, Caitlin’s written for Paste Magazine, The Chronicle of Higher Education, and MajoringinMusic.com. She loves cheese, laughing at GIFs of corgis, road trip sing-alongs, and connecting with people over good beer and good music.