Day One: Capitol Hill Block Party

Though the hometown reunion of the Murder City Devils in 2006 was enough to magnetize me to travel across the country, the 2007 installment of the Capitol Hill Block Party does not pale in comparison. With a familiar set-up, the line was formed before the doors opened at 3, and everyone was greeted with freezing cans of energy drinks. Kicking it off, really, were the Saturday Knights - a new signing to Seattle's Light In The Attic Records who are best known for their lauded Betty Davis re-issues and the very different caliber of the Austin psychedelic rock band (understatement galore), The Black Angels. File Saturday Knights, if you have or want to, under intelligent hip hop. Not quite as dark as El-P, the intellectual edge of SK's lyrics and song-writing are what magnify their presence on stage (the beach balls were a nice touch) and in the studio.

Going inside to Neumo's mainstage were two bands back to back that drew a crowd. Recent Loveless signing The Shackeltons were tearing up the stage as their lead singer was tearing up flowers, throwing them alongside his maddening professions and confessions that came out in arrhythmic, syncopated melodies that ran across the mathy, angular track that the band had laid out. Deep-suburban Pennsyltucky folks. Very impressive. The other band is no stranger to Onward Charles. Seattle localites The Blakes took the stage as the ink from their Light In The Attic record deal finished drying, and drew a packed audience into the main stage room. Throwing out some material that wasn't familiar to those that only know them by their most recent self-titled record (I thought it was called Let It Loose but that seems to just be a track...), you didn't know whether to keep your eyes on the near-identical features of brothers Garnett (vox/guitar) + Snow (bass/vox), or their drummer Bob, whom I'd seen in full costume at a Yacht Rock tribute show the night before at the very same venue (four words: that was fucking AWESOME).

I have to throw out some love, again, to Matt & Kim. I had a change to talk to Miss Kim before the block party, and it's so hard - you want to idolize these two, and be as starstruck as a sixteen year-old, but you just can't. Their set was similar to that at Siren, and Matt was kind enough to bare all from the waist up to not offend anyone in the audience with his sweat stains. Classic.

Today I'll be back at the Block Party, and I'm especially looking forward to The Cave Singers, which I hear is the new direction that Murder City Devil Derek Fudesco has taken the remains of the now-defunct Pretty Girls Make Graves. I'm tempted to check their MySpace before heading over there, but I think I'll savor the surprise...

Sorry for the lack of photos, btw...those will be up once I return to the East coast.

MySpace: http://www.myspace.com/thesaturdayknights
MySpace: http://www.myspace.com/theshackeltons
MySpace: http://www.myspace.com/theblakes
MySpace: http://www.myspace.com/mattandkim

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