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gobbinjr's psychosocial drama takes stage at Mercury on 12.06

gobbinjr is the brainchild of Wisconsin native Emma Witmer, whose rawness and minimalism in 2016 EP vom night might bring to mind a more synthpop version of Frankie Cosmos. Atop self-produced tracks filled with ethereal synths floating over slow-pulsing drum machines, and bursting with a wide variety of influences, lay Witmer’s intensely antisocial lyrics (the irony being that the songwriting itself has become the vehicle for sociability). They paint a picture of a helplessly shy writer with the song as her one authentically viable communication outlet. Lines like “I feel creepy all the time / ‘cause I like everybody more than they like me” and “maybe we all end up in space / undeserving of this friendly place” serve as social critique cloaked in the aesthetic of teenage diary entries. In this light, vom night proves to masterfully balance the head and the heart, becoming a provocative witness of the times with a simple, pop-centered approach.

You can catch their next show on Wednesday, December 6th at Mercury Lounge. - Andrew Strader





Buzz Alert: NJ's Ehiorobo's experimental r'n'b at Escape the Routine party - Baby's All Right, 11.25

It's rare to stumble upon artists that blend tradition and experimentation, music's past and future, as seamlessly as New Jersey's avant-soul one man band Ehiorobo. Oringally from Nigeria, the guy writes and produces in his bedroom remarkably unpredictable r'n'b tunes that manage to also sound sincere and compelling. Alectronica, hip hop and jazz equally contribute to this sonic brew that never ceases to entertain. Don't miss Ehiorobo live at Baby's All Right on November 25, within the first appointment with the Escape the Routine parties, a Deli sponsored event! Tickets are here.





The 5th Annual Freakout! Fest comes back tonight

Triple city-based indie label Freakout Records has been churning out some pretty fine electronic, psych and lively rock from three out of the four corners of the states. Operating out of Seattle, Los Angeles and New York, Freakout has taken to occupying various venues in Ballard for its festival since 2012, with artists of their own catalog, as well as other artists scattered around the Northwest and the country. Freakout! Festival returns again tonight, and its bill is as stacked as ever.

Co-presented by The Stranger, Audioasis on KEXP and supported by Killroom Records, Treefort Music Fest and Artist Home Record Club, Freakout! Fest will be hitting up its usual Ballard staples like Conor Byrne and Tractor Tavern, with Sarah Gerritsen and Roadkill Ghost Choir kicking things off with some early sets. Tonight's hip hop will be fulfilled by up and coming lyricist Taylar Elizza Beth, with some dark stoner psych coming from Blackwater Holy Light. Energetically folky blues comes from Battleme, who are out on tour supporting their new Cult Psychotica release, while Charms and FKL bring more of a dancey feel to a couple of the headlining spots.

Much of Saturday's bill recalls a warmer, more carefree season thanks to some surf-drenched sets from Baywitch, The Shivas and Guantanamo Baywatch, The White Tears and Pearl Dragon is Dead are collaborating on their performance at the Conor Byrne, Porter Ray and Jus Moni killing it in the rhythm and rhymes department, and Kelli Schaefer and Maiah Manser representing for solo noir pop.

There's so many more acts to see, thank goodness they're all playing on the same street. You can find more information about the artists, venues and tickets over at the Freakout Records site.





Abbi Press dances with herself and lemons in new video "Butterfly Effect"

Abbi Press has released a stunning video for her song "Butterfly Effect," a danceable indie-electronic tune chock-full of whimsical synth textures and accentuated by lightly, sparse percussive elements. The video, gorgeously colored and filmed almost entirely in slow-motion is dreamlike and mysterious. The integral recurring motif of the lemon is both striking and haunting- though I can't decide which feeling leaves more of an impact. One thing's for sure: this video is seriously cool, and a real treat to watch. -Geena Kloeppel





Psych rockers Color Tongue release visual album "Us and the Bugs"

Technology continues to expand the realm of what's doable and psych rock bands such as Color Tongue take full advantage of the possibilities. While the Bushwick quartet's next LP doesn't come out until later in 2018, they've released a visual album in the meantime called Us and the Bugs, a YouTube video of four songs set to an ocular feast of clips of mashed-up old cartoons, found footage of landscapes, warped dancers in bubble suits, and of course, bugs. It should hold you over through the winter while you wait for the album to drop; just project the video on your wall, turn off all the lights, and bundle up in your warmest blankets for the full effect. Watch Us and the Bugs in full below. - Will Sisskind

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