Every year, Ballard hosts a slew of Pacific Northwest-native musicians, comics, and artists at Macefield Music Festival. The annual gathering of locals and visitors stands as a staple event in the Seattle music scene. With its array of stages and venues available to attend, ranging from a large outdoor mainstage that sits beneath several gorgeous canopy trees, to indoor venues like the Tractor Tavern, The Sunset, and Hotel Albatross, Macefield remains a prime opportunity for arts lovers to join together over a three-day period and celebrate the local musical and artistic culture that Seattle has always thrived on.
KXSU will be at the festival, which runs from September 30th to October 2nd, and we’ll be covering all of the best sets, interviewing some of your (and our) favorite artists, and posting pictures and videos on all of our social media platforms – Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat, you name it. (Did I name all of them? There are too many. Can’t keep up. Help.)
There are so many great artists playing at this year’s festival that it was difficult for us to figure out we weren’t excited to see, but here are some sets that we’re especially stoked for.
Fly Moon Royalty
KXSU favorites Adra Boo and Action J are back at another local music festival, after bringing the house down with their Bumbershoot set earlier on this month. Ever since this match-made-in-heaven duo collaborated on their song “Android Love,” the art that Fly Moon Royalty has made has been pure magic. Adra Boo’s absolutely staggering vocals will make for a real moment at this year’s Macefield Music Festival, so be sure to get to their set and make yourself comfortable, because these two will undoubtedly shake your world. Check out Priscilla’s interview with the duo from just a couple weeks ago during their time at Bumbershoot!
Bryan John Appleby
I’ve had the pleasure of seeing Bryan John Appleby live before, as he opened up for Shaprece at The Crocodile in the spring of 2015, along with ELEL. His music really, truly is absolutely serene. He’s got a way with pairing very subtle vocal performances with intricate acoustic guitar licks, and ties it all up with deep lyrics that may very well strike some personal chords with a vast majority of the crowd that attends his set. If you’re looking to better familiarize yourself with some of his work ahead of the festival, I’d suggest checking out “Honey Jars,” “Cliffs Along the Sea,” and “Boys.”
Uppity local Seattle group Boyfriends are undoubtedly going to bring a sense of bouncy indie-pop goodness to Macefield Music Festival this year, coming off the heels of a spring and summer full of excitement after releasing their limited EP, I Thought We Had Plans, in February. My personal favorite from the tracks available on the EP, “Groovy,” carries the identity of what I imagine the lovechild between a standard Beatles pop release and the classic underground indie Seattle sound would sound like.
Hardly Art recording artists Gazebos have a way of bringing a sense of comedic relief with each of their live performances, all while still maintaining their integrity as artists. The Seattle music landscape has always provided artists with extra room for incredibly free expression and eclectic sounds that aren’t commonly found anywhere else, and Gazebos takes advantage of those freedoms in the best way. From the structuring of their songs to the costumes they wear while playing them, they’ve always brought good times in their past shows, and will surely do so next weekend during their set.
After their stint at this year’s Capitol Hill Block Party (where KXSU’s Julia got to interview them), the Seattle-based trio Nail Polish is back in the area for another wild and hectic set. With a discography full of head-bangers and and guitar-heavy uptempos, look to this group to keep your blood pumping in case you’re running low on energy or need a break from getting far too involved with your emotions (after sets from the likes of the aforementioned Bryan John Appleby).
This year’s Macefield Music Festival will run from September 30th – October 2nd, 2016. The KEXP main stage is open to all ages, but some of the other stages such as the ones at the Tractor Tavern are 21+. Tickets are still available here; be sure to grab one before the weekend sells out!
CRAIG JAFFE | This is the first time I’ll be attending a 21+ event! BECAUSE I CAN! Wow. | Editor