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July 18, 2013

Previewing the Precipice Music Festival Playlist

Kat singin

"Precipice: A 3 Day Happening" at Burlington College this weekend has more than three reasons for you to attend: 65 local bands. Twenty-two of them can be heard on a recently released Bandcamp sampler.

For starters, Alpenglow’s folky rock bursts into rocky folk in the hard-hitting, fiddle-screeching “Solitude.” But the Burlington-based band also takes its time with soaring harmonies and careful acoustic pluckings.

The 10-piece Bella’s Bartok might blow your brain. Three drumstick clacks begin “Creepster,” joined shortly by upbeat guitar, thumping bass and commanding vocals that ask, “When I speak, do I sound a little funny?” This is jump-around, pump-your-fist music at its finest.

Kat Wright (pictured above) says, “It’s all about you” about a million times in the song titled — what else? — “All About You.” Yet her jazzy Indomitable Soul Band make it sound different every time. Plus, with her just-breathy-enough voice, Wright really does make it all about you.

She comes back crooning in country duets “Windy Pines” and “At Least Not Today,” sung with Brett Hughes. In the latter song, the duo blends in a swaying ballad that could only be improved by a backdrop of setting sun over Lake Champlain. (How much you wanna bet Wright and Hughes take the stage at just the right moment?)

The Lucky Jukebox Brigade shows what happens when a John Philip Sousa march mingles with the soundtrack of a Tim Burton film. “Dollhouse” climbs eerily to a final crescendo.

 Skamaphrodites provide all the poppy punk and angsty male vocals you could ever want in a ska band in “Ev-er-y Day.” And Maryse Smith’s voice is creamy smooth in “Good Thing.”

 “She said I never liked the guitar, always liked the saxophone,” begins the love story of a song called “Guitar” by Michael Chorney and Hollar General. Chorney strums the song’s namesake in a warm, comforting melody.

Concluding the Precipice pitch, Something with Strings give us a twangy toe-tapper aptly called “Dead End.” 

Precipice: A 3 Day Happening is next weekend, July 26-28, at Burlington College. Tickets and other info at the festival's website.

Full disclosure: The aforementioned angsty male vocal of Skamaphrodite is that of Seven Days music editor Dan Bolles. Seven Days designer Diane Sullivan can also be heard boo-hoo-hooing in “Crybaby” with her band the Dirty Blondes. Seven Days is the media sponsor of the festival.

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