Arts & CultureMusic

11 hidden gems of this year’s Sasquatch Music Festival lineup


As you impatiently create your schedule for Sasquatch this weekend, be sure to check out the following artists who are not quite as well-known as some of the headliners , but just as talented. You know, the kinds of artists you may hear on the radio later and cooly say to your friend, “I saw them before they were popular.”

1. Phox

This Wisconsin-based alternative folk/indie pop band is fairly new to the music scene. Their whimsical instrumentals, paired with the vocals of the incredibly talented lead singer, Monica Martin, is sure to make for a fantastic outdoor show. If you like the Civil Wars, Ingrid Michaelson or even Mumford and Sons, you’ll like Phox.

Playing Monday, May 25, 3:30 p.m. on the BIGFOOT stage.

2. Cashmere Cat

This Norwegian turntablist has been pretty under the radar for the past few years. However, you might recognize the name from a recent collaboration he did with Ariana Grande in her song “Adore.” His music, filled with unconventional as well as familiar instrumental sounds, is kind of like being stuck in a lucid dream — in a good way.

Playing Sunday, May 24, 10 p.m. on the EL CHUPACABRA stage.

3. Vox Mod

The electronic solo and collaborative musical project started by Scot Porter of Seattle is sure to attract the EDM fans of Sasquatch this weekend. But even if you’re not part of the EDM crowd, you’ll probably dig Vox Mod. His sound is both entrancing and upbeat — comparable to Odesza, but more sedated.

Playing Saturday, May 23, 6:20 p.m. on the EL CHUPACABRA stage.


The seven-piece neo-funk, disco-electro band was founded by Tom McFarland and Josh Lloyd-Watson, a British best friend duo. They’ve been called “A British Music Collective with Disco Beats” and “The U.K.’s Most Mysterious Act.” With some purely instrumental songs and others with anthemy, melodic choruses, like “Busy Earnin’,” JUNGLE serves both an EDM crowd and those who just like to get groovy. Plus, “Platoon” is one of the best music videos I’ve seen in the last year.

Playing Friday, May 22, 4:45 p.m. on the SASQUATCH stage.

5. Angel Olsen

Olsen is a lo-fi, indie folk singer sure tear your heart out, while singing exactly what your soul needs to hear. The Jagjaguwar (Bon Iver, Foxygen) singer may have a soft voice, but it’s filled with pain, strength and girl-power grunge.

Playing Friday, May 22, 8:45 p.m. on the YETI stage.


To me, WOODS is everything a Pacific NW band should be: from their name to their close harmonies and beards to their lyrical interaction with nature — light, leaves and feathers. But WOODS is from Brooklyn, which inherently makes them cooler, right? Take a break on the grassy hill with this indie psychedelic rock trio.

Playing Saturday, May 23, 6:25 on the YETI stage.

7. Alvvays

First off, it’s pronounced “Always.” Second, they’re Canadian. And third, they’ve released one album, and it topped the US college charts this year. The five-piece indie garage-pop group is the perfect backdrop to a sun-soaked youthful escapade, much like Sasquatch Music Festival.

Playing Monday, May 25, 9:15 p.m. on the YETI stage.

8. San Fermin

This Brooklyn-based, eight-piece indie pop band has all the goodies — melodic and harmonizing vocals accompanied by a full set of instrumentals. It was created by Ellis Ludwig-Leone, an artist with an impressive musical background. After studying music at Yale, he worked alongside avant-garde classical composer Nico Muhly (whose previous collaborations included Björk, Grizzly Bear and Antony & the Johnsons). It’s no wonder San Fermin’s sound is top-notch.

Playing Monday, May 25, 7:45 p.m. on the YETI stage.

9. Ex Hex

If you like badass female bands, glam rock and power pop, you’ll want to check out Ex Hex. The talented trio was born in a Washington D.C. basement just a couple years ago, and they’ve worked their way up the popularity scale ever since. I’m sure their performance will be just as emotionally relieving as their music. All-girls mosh pit anyone? Great. See you there.

Playing Sunday, May 24, 9:15 p.m. at the YETI stage.

10. Courtney Barnett

She’s a singer, a guitarist, a songwriter and an enthusiast of the mundane. Hailing from Melbourne, this indie/alternative artist makes being lazy and cynical look cool and fun — to boot, she sounds pretty good doing it. Her earthy and lethargic sound is sure to make for a good daytime show this weekend.

Playing Monday, May 25, 3:10 p.m. on SASQUATCH.

11. The New Pornographers

This indie pop band is upbeat as heck — the perfect background to an outdoor dance party on a sunny day. Although they started out in 2000, and have released five studio albums since, they’re surprisingly not as popular as they should be. They’re guaranteed to put on a good show (I can tell you from experience).

Playing Friday, May 22, 6:05 p.m. on SASQUATCH.

Can’t make it to the Gorge this weekend? No worries. We’ll be updating our website and social media accounts with daily highlights from the festival, including plenty of photos. Stay tuned.

Sophia June contributed to the reporting in this article.

Follow Andrea Harvey on Twitter @andrearharvey

Follow Sophia June on Twitter @skittlejune

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Andrea Harvey

Andrea Harvey

Andrea is an arts and culture editor for the Emerald, and recent graduate of the UO School of Journalism and Communication.