Decibel Festival 2009 preview!


by DJ Alex Ruder

Now in its 6th year, Seattle’s Decibel Festival has become an internationally renowned electronic music and arts festival that will play host to 150+ artists playing in 13 venues throughout Seattle from September 24th to September 27th.

With its enthusiastic dedication to hosting the broadest spectrum of electronic music, figuring out which of Decibel Festival’s 28 unique showcases to attend can truly be a difficult task. The All-Access Pass will be a MUST for any electronic music fanatics who want to run wild during the extended weekend and truly experience the immense wealth of talent.

But if you’re on a budget, here’s my top picks for this year’s festival:

Thursday September 24th:

Ghostly 10 Opening Gala @ The Seattle Art Museum with Lusine, The Sight Below, Tycho, Michna
CLASSY! Kick off the festival with style at the Seattle Art Museum to witness four top-notch artists on America’s premier electronic-pop label, including two of Seattle’s finest electronic musicians, The Sight Below and Lusine!

dB in Dub Pt.1: Past, Present and Future of Dub @ Neumo’s with Mad Professor, Benga, DJ/Rupture, Echospace, KEXP’s Kid Hops
DUB! This year’s festival is particularly heavy on dub and all its accompanying subgenres, and this showcase from start (KEXP’s own Kid Hops!) to finish (UK’s Benga!) will be an astonishing showcase of talent both new (Echospace!) and old (the legendary Mad Professor!) within the field.

Friday September 25th:

dB in Dub Pt. 2: Dubstep Massive @ MOTOR with Boxcutter, Caspa, N-Type, Monkeytek, DJ Collage, Dubtek
MORE DUB! If you’re still reeling from Neumo’s the previous night, head down to MOTOR to behold some of UK’s finest dubstep DJ/producers flexing their widest basslines alongside high-energy MCs! Massive.

Dirty Dancing Showcase @ Neumo’s with Wighnomy Brothers, Alex Under, Rob Hood, Noah Pred
SEXY DANCE TIME! Minimal techno always sounds better when you’re listening to it on big speakers in a club and dancing in a room full of sweaty bodies and smiling faces. Fact!

Saturday September 26th:

Bass Lovers Unite Showcase @ Neumo’s with Daedelus, Nosaj Thing, Mary Anne Hobbs, Megasoid, Mala
BASS! Nosaj Thing is the future. Mary Anne Hobbs is the prophet. Daedelus is the joker. Megasoid is the new kid on the block. Come discover some integral figures in the blossoming “international beat scene,” a movement that is so mysteriously awesome, people can’t even figure out what to name it!

dB Afterhours: The Deep End Pt. 2 @ Church of Bass with Move D, Martyn, Pezzner, Voodeux, Tanner Ross
AFTERHOURS! This is the afterhours event of the festival. Take a nap. Get an energy drink. Plan ahead. Then go dance until the sun comes up!

Sunday September 27th:

dB in the Park @ Volunteer Park with Gaslamp Killer, Sub Swara, KiloWatts, Eddie
FREE! Swing by Volunteer Park anytime between 12pm and 6pm to catch some amazing sounds and mingle with friends. Big bonus: Seattle debut of the Gaslamp Killer! Don’t sleep on the Gaslamp Killer.

Optical 3: Ameritronica Showcase @ Triple Door with Mountains, Benoit Pioulard, Goldmund
PRETTY! All three artists create numbingly beautiful ambient/folk/drone music. Absorbing their music at the Triple Door should be a sublime and well-deserved sonic massage.

Decibel Festival Finale @ Neumo’s with Alter Ego, Tim Exile, Reagenz, Jerry Abstract, Derek Michael
FINALE! On record, Tim Exile creates a futuristic interpretation of the dark, gothic, driving electronic-pop of Depeche Mode and Cabaret Voltaire. Live, Tim Exile is a weirder, darker Jamie Lidell. Bear witness to his Seattle debut and see if his live show meets the hype!

Be sure to go to to read more about the showcases, watch live videos of the performers, and buy tickets!

And also be sure to check out my latest podcast for KEXP’s Music That Matters Series titled Spotlight on Decibel Festival 2009 to hear tracks from 16 artists playing at this year’s festival!

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