Capitol Hill Block Party 2018 Lineup: KXSU Blog Staff Reacts

Just as the freezing weather shifts to sun and warmer temperatures and the Seattle residents are beginning to emerge from their seasonal depression caves, the folks at Capitol Hill Block Party dropped the partial lineup for this summer’s festival earlier this week. From indie-rock provocateur Father John Misty to the best boy band since One Direction BROCKHAMPTON, the CHBP 2018 lineup has something for everyone. Check out what the KXSU blog staff has to say about this year’s acts!


Friday, July 20: Alvvays, Dillon Frances, Dude York, Goldlink, Flasher, Kelly Lee Owens, Melvv, Quinn XCII, Sol, Two Feet

AlvvaysAlvvays is a band that I started getting into during the summertime, and their sound is perfect for exactly that. If you like The Japanese Breakfast or Tennis, you should definitely check this band out. They have such a dreamy synth-pop feel to them, and the lead singer’s voice is one of the most soothing sounds in the world. I missed them when they came to Seattle in the fall so I hope I get the chance to check them out at CHBP! I’ve heard their concerts can be very chill but still a good time with great music. Check out their songs “Archie, Marry Me” and “Not My Baby.” – Frances Divinagracia

Dillon Francis

I hadn’t thought about Dillon Francis in quite a long time—two years, to be exact. Seeing his name as one of the three headliners on the CHBP lineup sent me right back to summer after junior year of high school. My Spotify playlist was continually cycling through with a vast cycle of electronic music, everything from more indie electronica to bands with a grungier vibe, like Purity Ring, to bands that had a distinctive summary and clubby vibe, like Dillon Francis and Hippie Sabotage. Seeing him live will certainly be a trip for all parties involved. He’s from LA, and although his music is more dub-steppy than I typically listen to on a regular basis, seeing him will be undoubtedly fun, electric, and exciting. He’s a perfect artist to be headlining Cap Hill Block Party, and I can’t wait to hear the tunes that I associate so closely with a summer that’s years gone with a newer and bolder Seattle summer.

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Dude York

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Photo courtesy of the band

Ah Dude York. Seattle favorites, lovers of Smash Mouth, memes, and good ol’ fashioned rock and roll. I had the opportunity to see Dude York release 2017’s Sincerely, their last non-holiday album, and WOW what a show. On the record, Dude York carefully toes the line between serious, hard-hitting, emotionally driven and complex music and… Americana rock. Live however, Dude York wants to make sure you to have a great time and allows the Americana rock aspect of their music to shine through in such a hilarious and sarcastic yet talented way. At a Dude York show, one should often expect the fun kind of moshing—fists in the air, and “dad at a Bruce Springsteen concert” -esque dancing. Already feeling nostalgic for the holiday season? Check out the holiday album Dude York released this year for a hilarious but also very well-made holiday pop-punk extravaganza set to yule log. – Julia Olson


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I’m just gonna put it out there – I love Goldlink. There’s something about his music, so characteristically bouncy and repetitive, with clever bars and music that you either want to sing along to, cry along to, or both. As far as rappers go, Goldlink is probably one of my favorites – he samples a lot of songs that I already love and know by heart (Kaytranada, anyone?), adds amazing vocals on top, and boom! a masterpiece is created. Along with BROCKHAMPTON, Goldlink is one of the musicians that I’m most excited to see on the lineup this year at Cap Hill Block Party. I’ve wanted to see him live for such a long time, and after hearing nothing but rave reviews about his performances from everyone I know who has seen him, I think that Cap Hill Block Party will be the perfect place for Goldlink to showcase his talents to Seattle.


Quinn XCII

I was thinking about going home to California this summer, but if anything is going to convince me to stay in Seattle it will be the Capitol Hill Block Party. In addition to other amazing artists, Quinn XCII will be coming to sunny Seattle to join the party. Quinn XCII is a Detroit-based vocalist and songwriter who fuses pop, hip-hop, reggae, and EDM into his own unique sound. His songs are typically about failed relationships and heartbreak, but they’re often sung or rapped over bright, sunny backing tracks that partially disguise the melancholy sentiments of the lyrics. His songs are fun and funky and it’s easy to have a good time with this music in the background (or foreground). The first time I head Quinn XCII was when my friend played “Straightjacket” when we were hammocking at a lake in the spring. I was quickly hooked by his unique sound and catchy vocals. You can connect with him on Instagram, Twitter,  Facebook, or on his Official Website. – Bridget Benevides

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Photo courtesy of Billboard

Saturday, July 21: Betty Who, BROCKHAMPTON, Busty and the Brass, Chet Porter, Gavin Turek, Great Grandpa, the Dip, Jamila Woods, Metsa, Oh Wonder, PARISALEXA, Pluto




What can I say about BROCKHAMPTON that you haven’t already heard/read/thought? If you don’t know who these boys are, you desperately need to listen to “HEAT” or “SWEET”, or ANY song off one of the three SATURATION albums that were released in 2017, plus the gems from their first official release, ALL-AMERICAN TRASH. Three albums in one year, plus an extensive North American tour to kick off 2018 begs the question: do they ever sleep? Probably not considering they all live under the same roof. BROCKHAMPTON are breaking the mold of the traditional “boyband” and shattering the clichés that have been sent forth in rap music. The members speak of their own experiences in their music, so what you see is what you get. The issues they grapple with are universal: sexuality, poverty, loneliness, and growing up. BROCKHAMPTON are so important because the members come from all walks of life and provide representation to people who don’t typically see people like them in the spotlight. They continue to show kids and the music industry that no matter who you are, if you’re determined to make something happen, you can. That message of positivity paired with explosive stage presence, emotional performances, and catchy songs creates the perfect storm and a can’t-miss set from the boyband. Not to mention, they will most certainly have put out at LEAST one more album between the time I write this and when they step onstage on July 21. – Haley Parsons

I literally just saw BROCKHAMPTON at The Showbox last week, and I was so excited to see them on the lineup for CHBP! While I did almost die in the middle of that mosh pit, it was a phenomenal experience and one of the best concerts I had been to in a while. The energy coming off the stage from the best boyband since One Direction is unparalleled to any other artist I have ever seen live. Seeing “BLEACH” and “SUMMER” live was everything I imagined and more. The fact that they’re coming to Seattle again and headlining this festival is truly amazing.

I’ve got a picture here of the lovely Kevin Abstract at the concert (I took this on portrait mode on an iPhone 8+, can you believe that?!). – Frances Divinagracia

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Photo by Frances Divinagracia

Great Grandpa

Great Grandpa will be performing at Capitol Hill Block Party this year! I have had the pleasure of seeing them before, and I can assure you I enjoyed every minute of it! Great Grandpa is our very own five-piece Seattle-based band, consisting of Carrie Miller, Alex Menne, Dylan Hanwright, Patrick Goodwin, and Cam LaFlam. Great Grandpa combines the various sounds of grunge, pop, indie rock, and alternative to create an exquisite sound unique to them. They contribute a collaborative, cohesive, and innovative style to the overall music scene and represent the DIY scene. I highly recommend listening to songs “Ram” from Can Opener and “Fade” from Plastic Cough. Both songs epitomize their hauntingly dreamy sound that represents all they are going after. They are able to integrate the many musical elements and genres, they perform, into one. When seeing Great Grandpa, expect a boundless amount of passion, joy, and talent ricochet off the stage and into the audience. Their overall spirit will become contagious and you will be hooked, if not already. Connect with Great Grandpa on their website. – Emma Weaver

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Photo by Buggy Vigor/Courtesy of the artist

Emma gave a great rundown on my favorite Seattle band, Great Grandpa. Now I’m here to back them even more! I’ve seen Great Grandpa live over five times, and I have a smile on my face during and after every set they play. Vocalist Alex Menne brings a truly unique presence to the stage, and I can almost guarantee you haven’t seen anything quite like it. Switching around from little yelps, impressive projection, and slight vocals, Menne draws you in and keeps your eyes glued on the stage. You can see the bond the band members have as they play off of each other’s energy, and their passion is contagious. Their refreshing and creative sound gives me hope for the indie rock/punk scene, and it’s reassuring to have genuine musicians present in our city’s DIY scene. Don’t write them off as another local band, give them a try and they’ll prove themselves to you. – Julia Schwab

Jamila Woods

Surprisingly, I first heard of Jamila Woods on the title track of Shira Erlichman’s 2016 album Subtle Creature. Woods’ vocals on that track are airy and mysterious which initially drew me to her music. Formally one half of the duo M&O, Chicago-born singer-songwriter Jamila Woods is a force to be reckoned with. Her music exudes resilience, freedom, and purpose and her vocals are both high energy and vulnerable. Former Digital Media Director April Jingco wrote at length about the power of Woods’ music. Here’s an excerpt of Jingco’s article from last year:

Jamila’s music teaches me all of the lessons I was not ever taught in school. Her music also teaches me to unlearn the oppressive things that I did learn in school. She’s taught me to be patient with my thoughts. She’s taught me that being lonely is a process, and one that I shouldn’t be scared of. She’s one of the many womxn who remind me that I still have so much to learn about intersectional feminism, especially that of centering black feminism as a way of fighting for justice…”

Check out Jamila Woods on Saturday, July 21st! – Emma Pierce

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Photo by Zoe Rain

Oh Wonder

Oh boy! Oh Wonder is coming to Seattle. When I saw that they were on the lineup for Capitol Hill Block Party I audibly gasped. Oh Wonder is the London, England-based songwriting duo of Anthony West and Josephine Vander Gucht, who craft and sing – in unison – wispy, mostly slow-grooving, R&B-flecked tunes. You might recognize their songs “Lost It” or “Drive” which are in their top five most played songs on Spotify and two of my favorites. Let me paint a picture for you: you’re driving down a highway with the ocean on your left and your best friend to your right; the sun is spilling in through the window and warming your lap and the warm breeze makes your hair dance across your face and you’re smiling so hard it hurts… Oh Wonder is playing on the radio and everything is so perfectly wonderful. Oh Wonder is a band you don’t want to miss, if you ask me. Connect with them on Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, or on their website. – Bridget Benevides

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Photo courtesy of GroundSounds


Sunday, July 22: Amber Mark, Bully, Cashmere Cat, Chong the Nomad Father John Misty, Overcoats, Ryan Caraveo, Teskey Brothers, TR/ST, Yaeji


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Photo by Marcelo Gomes for The New Yorker

I’ve been curved by the Yaeji tour more times than I can count. It seems like every time the Korean-American artist is in a city near me, she’s playing a 21+ venue. Fortunately, when Block Party rolls around, I will finally be 21 and able to finally witness one of my favorite DJs in action. After falling in love with EP2, specifically tracks like “raingurl” and a cover of Drake’s “Passionfruit”, I went on a Yaeji binge. Icy hi-hats and tight percussive beats flow well with muted voice tracks that often bleed into a sort-of half rap. Intimate lyrics and hazy, whispered vocals give live sets in large venues or dimly-lit clubs a much more personal feel; much of her music sounds like its been recorded underground. If you haven’t listened to Yaeji before, I recommend checking out her Boiler Room set performed in New York for a preview of what I can only hope we’ll be experiencing during her Block Party set. – Madeline Thomas



Although I like to fly by the story that Sufjan Stevens was my *first show ever*, that I cried and realized my true passion for music yada, yada, yada, this in fact is FALSE. Bully was my first show ever, ever. Back in high school I had my true punk awakening when I went to see Best Coast at Minneapolis legendary club First Avenue, and the lovely, energetic n’ grungy Bully opened. Fast forward three years and Bully is still THRIVING with a new and equally angst fueled Feels Like, out via Sub Pop Records earlier this year. See Bully live, and you will relish in the mystery of how frontwoman Alicia Bognanno still has an audible voice after she sings her heart and lungs out with an utmost power, angst, and raspy confidence. For a taste of that good angst check out the track “Feel the Same” off Feels Like, a true masterpiece depicting  lethargy of a bad split with sincerity and a super catchy riff. – Julia Olson


Let your inner goth rejoice. Industrial, grave wave, electronic, whatever you want to call it – TR/ST’s music is like a soundtrack for lucid dreaming. There’s no way you won’t be moving to this music. It is hypnotic and entrancing, the kind of beats that demand movement. My genre-definition would be electro-pop, but a shade darker (so, yeah, grave-wave is pretty close). Robert Alfons’ voice is creepy enough to haunt you; his vocals soar over the synth and soft pulsing leads like water. For ideal listening, turn off all the lights in your bedroom and you might be lucky enough to astral project, or invent a new cyber-punk dance move. The 2012 TRST album is an experience, to say the least. Something about the music just feels silver. Joyland, released in 2015, echoes the same metallic sounds. Alfons’ latest work with TR/ST is the single “Bicep.” It’s safe to say once you’ve listened, you’ll want his ghost to stick around. – Madeline Thomas

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Photo by David Gomez

Father John Misty

One of the bigger names on a bill stuffed with stars is Father John Misty and his set should be an engrossing experience, to say the least. The man also known as Joshua Tillman moved from a devout religious upbringing in Rockville, Maryland, to Seattle when he was 21, where he eventually joined Fleet Foxes. Tillman played drums in the band for four years but left in 2012 to further develop his own sound. That year, Fear Fun was released on Sub Pop and became the first chapter in the Book of Misty. From there, Tillman released an album I’ve come back to over and over since I was 16, I Love You, Honeybear, a masterpiece that addresses love, the media, and self-destructive behavior in the modern ages. Later, the disgust Tillman felt over the election of Donald Trump and the state of the world turned into his third album, Pure Comedy. The overarching message I got from Tillman’s performance when I last saw him was that you’re probably not as great of a person as you think you are, but we’re all doomed, so we might as well try to find someone or something we love and hold tight while we can. – Haley Parsons

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Photo by Ben Kaye


KXSU Blog Staff 

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