PDX Pop Now!
Portland’s music scene has grown so raucously big that sometimes it’s impossible to keep up with your favorite local bands, let alone check out all the new ones—which is why we collectively thank our Musical Maker every July when PDX Pop Now! rolls around. Not only is the all-local festival free, all-ages, and volunteer-run (making it still seem more like a recurring Portlandia pipe dream than a reality, despite entering its 10th year), but its eclectic lineup features a formidable cross-section of what’s going on right now, kind of like music’s take on Fashion Week. (Indeed, if you want the abbreviated history of the last decade of the Portland music scene in easy two-disc installments, you can do no better than tracking down the PDX Pop Now! compilations). The 45 bands this year run the gamut, from literate, melancholy country rockers Richmond Fontaine to inventive metal ensemble Witch Mountain to the beguiling gypsy pop of Y La Bamba.