Lose Yr Mind, Portland’s DIY psych and indie rock music festival, returned for its seventh year this past weekend. Touring and local bands rocked the stage, but one thing was for certain – everyone was grateful to have shows back.
The long weekend kicked off with two live, free sets from Roselit Bone and Silver Triplets at KEX Portland’s studio Thursday night. On Friday, the festivities kicked off with a happy hour DJ set from DJ Rescue (Zia McCabe of The Dandy Warhols). The true festival followed at Vitalidad Movement Arts & Event Center with killer sets from Acid Dad, Meatbodies, Dommengang, Help and Acid Tongue. Each night at the festival also included art installations, an outdoor beer garden, food pop ups, vendors and more. Saturday night started out with another happy hour DJ set from Shannon Shaw (of Shannon and the Clams) at the KEX Portland studio once again. Saturday evening’s festival lineup included sets from Deap Vally, Death Valley Girls, Scott Yoder, Sleeping Beauties, Spoon Benders and Plastic Cactus. The very full weekend of fun concluded with Rontoms’ only free Sunday night show of the year with music from Shadowgraphs, Death Parade and Yuvees.
Some major highlights from the festival included Portland rockers Dommengang and Spoon Benders. Both local bands are ones I had never heard of or seen before, and they surprised me with their well put together sounds. Dommengang reflected a sound similar to that of Dead Meadow, while Spoon Benders brought the heavy, fuzzy guitars and loud drums. Acid Dad was another band that I wasn’t all too familiar with, but after seeing their Levitation Sessions edit back in May, I knew they had to be something special. They matched their recorded album sound to the tee and got the crowd moshing. A couple of other pleasant surprises were Death Valley Girls and Deap Vally – both female-led heavy hitters. Death Valley Girls had such great energy that got the crowd surfing, particularly an attendee with light up sneakers, which caught the eye of lead singer Bonnie Bloomgarden. Deap Vally are simply a powerhouse guitarist/singer and drummer/singer, yet they made for the loudest band of the weekend, closing out Lose Yr Mind with a bang.
I went into this year’s festival with a pretty open mind, not knowing most of the bands all too well – yet I left with a pretty blown mind… or perhaps just a lost one. One thing that was especially special and warming was that pretty much every band expressed their gratitude for being able to play a live show in front of us, for the great participation from the crowd and for the whole crew that helped put on yet another fantastic festival.