Robert Smith and The Cure will headline 2016’s Sasquatch! Music Festival at The Gorge in Washington. If that’s somehow not enough, Florence + The Machine, Alabama Shakes and Disclosure top the bill at the most laid-back camping festival I attended last year. The four-day festival takes place over Memorial Day Weekend from May 27-30. Tickets go on sale January 12 at 10 AM and are priced at $350.
The Cure is one of the best gets of any festival in 2016. Alabama Shakes at sunset on the main stage would be perfection. Also billed are worthy performers like Leon Bridges, Grimes, Sufjan Stevens, Chet Faker, Jamie XX, Caribou, Tycho, Todd Terje, Wolf Alice, Rudimental, The Internet and plenty more. The bottom lines of the lineup features plenty of acts from nearby Seattle, Portland and other burgeoning music scenes.
The Gorge is the most beautiful place I’ve seen a show at to date. Kendrick Lamar left things on a high note with his festival-closing performance and the vibe and weather were perfect for camping. Seeing Jenny Lewis at sunset was one of the high points of my festival binge last summer. If the lineup was even halfway decent – which it more than is – I was planning a trip back. It is a bit of a bummer that this festival takes place the same weekend as the Napa Valley festival BottleRock, but Sasquatch! emerged with the better lineup.
The Cure is known for going over their allotted time at Coachella in 2009 with a 32-song set. Their deep catalog of hits make them the perfect overall headliner. Florence + The Machine is hitting the festival circuit hard, and Sasquatch! will mark the second of four festival-headlining performances in May alone, with Shaky Knees, Hangout and BottleRock all featuring her atop their lineups. Still, she put on some of the more memorable sub-headlining sets at Coachella and Bonnaroo in 2015 and has earned the right to shine atop second-tier festival bills.
Sasquatch! is very much a regional fest with a large pull coming from nearby college towns. Last year I was surrounded by kids from University of Oregon as well as smaller colleges in Portland. The hipster is strong at Sasquatch! and many kids seemed to be there for the drugs more than the music, but overall it is a very chilled-out festival. My recap of last year’s festival provides more information on what you can expect.
If you’re looking for a camping festival that isn’t as high-strung or unbearable temperature-wise as Coachella or Bonnaroo, this might be the stop for you. See you out there!
Words: Mark E. Ortega