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Psych Fest Blurbs

Fri., May 2, 2014

Unknown Mortal Orchestra
Unknown Mortal Orchestra

THURSDAY

Elephant Stone

9pm, Mohawk

A mind-blowing highlight of last year's APF, Montreal's Elephant Stone deftly fold Indian raga into psychedelic pop without becoming "raga rock." Two LPs perfe ctly blend Eighties UK guitar shimmer with leader Rishi Dhir's fleet-fingered sitar excursions. – Michael Toland

FRIDAY

Black Lips

8:15pm, Reverberation Stage

Long-running Atlanta punks hold the distinction of being the rowdiest and most destructive act mining the Sixties garage vein. Brand-new Vice disc Underneath the Rainbow shoots snotty tuneage like "Drive-By Buddy" and "Funny," which betray serious blues influence beneath the phlegm. – Tim Stegall

The Zombies

9:30pm, Reverberation Stage

Nothing lysergic about the Zombies, the most baroque of the British Invasion acts. As centered on Rod Argent's classically-influenced keyboards and Colin Blunstone's ethereal vocals, the Zombies scored massive mid-Sixties hits with "She's Not There" and "Tell Her No," before suffering commercial damnation for their sophistication. Posthumous proto-prog masterpiece Odessey & Oracle then spawned 1968 smash "Time of the Season." – Tim Stegall

The Dandy Warhols

10:45pm, Reverberation Stage

A cruel joke, booking both druggy Portlandians the Dandy Warhols, touring behind a live re-creation of breakout LP Thirteen Tales From Urban Bohemia, and former allies/Dig! co-stars Brian Jonestown Massacre. Hoping for a live restaging of that classic rockumentary? Just remember how great Courtney Taylor-Taylor's techno-Velvets mob sounds, as on the Stonesy chug of 2000 hit "Bohemian Like You." – Tim Stegall

SATURDAY

Mark McGuire

1:45pm, Elevation Amphitheatre

Panda Bear
Panda Bear

Mark McGuire makes pinging, ethereal drone music, stuff that sounds beautiful and cosmic, nestled happily in the uncanny valley of Tangerine on Dead Oceans debut Along the Way. McGuire got his start with Cleveland experimental trio Emeralds, and has carried their now-deceased torch with outstanding grace. – Luke Winkie

Steve Gunn

3:15pm, Reverberation Stage

Guitarist/songwriter Steve Gunn normally strides out of Philadelphia at the side of indie rock darling Kurt Vile as a Violator. Yet he's equally known for the eclectic improvisational prowess of GHQ and the Gunn-Truscinski Duo, as well as his devotion to the John Fahey/Robbie Basho school of new acoustica. Acclaimed 2013 LP Time Off proves him a fine singer-songwriter as well. – Michael Toland

Jacco Gardner

5:30pm, Elevation Amphitheatre

On 2013's effervescent Cabinet of Curiosities, Jacco Gardner deftly melded the Curt Boettcher vein of harpsichord-driven baroque pop to the whimsical madcap lyricism of Syd Barrett. Subsequent appearances at SXSW prove the Hoorn, Holland, native's home studio-centric concoctions hearty enough to withstand live translation. – Greg Beets

Unknown Mortal Orchestra

9:30pm, Reverberation Stage

The popularity of UMO and last year's sophomore disc II proves that the indie kids were ready for some guitar wizardry. Hailing from both Auckland and Portland, this trio shoots arid, mesmerizing darts that swoop low and burrow into your brain. Gotta love a band that makes you twitch. – Luke Winkie

Medicine

10:15pm, Levitation Tent

Originally the States' answer to the UK shoegaze movement, Medicine evolved into its own beast, incorporating dance beats and old school psychedelia for a distinctive brand of melodic abrasion. Reissues of their first two albums led to a full-fledged reunion of principals Brad Laner, Beth Thompson, and Jim Goodall. To the Happy Few proves Medicine still delivers sweet 'n' sour skronk. – Michael Toland

SUNDAY

Higgins Waterproof Black Magic Band

9pm, Levitation Tent

Side project of TV on the Radio vocalist Tunde Adebimpe deftly reconciles the connection between krautrock and West African desert blues. The NYC quartet's sleek, overnight instrumentation also exudes hints of post-punk and dub, with the singer's vocal approach more soulful and emotive than his work with TVOTR. The whistle-driven "Mad Lifeline" packs a real wallop. – Greg Beets

Panda Bear

11pm, Reverberation Stage

Animal Collective frees Panda Bear for a continuously fertile solo career. Person Pitch blew minds in 2007 with its digitally lysergic updating of the Beach Boys and now Panda Bear Meets the Grim Reaper looms on the horizon. You can also hear him singing the chorus on Daft Punk's world-beating "Doin' It Right." – Luke Winkie

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