A different look for Musicfest NW

Portland music fest settles in one spot, pares back number of days and bands

By Jenny Wasson / The Bulletin

Change is in the air for MusicfestNW, a Portland staple for more than a decade.

Once touted as one of the country’s largest indoor music festivals, MusicfestNW is heading outdoors this August. The now two-day music festival will be held Aug. 16-17 (rain or shine) at the Tom McCall Waterfront Park.

Originally started as an offshoot of Austin, Texas’ SXSW mega-festival, MusicfestNW had grown to feature more than 150 bands playing across four or five days at venues throughout Portland.

Feeling a change was necessary, organizers pared the lineup down to 18 acts this year and moved the event to the park. “Every year we noticed it getting harder and harder to accommodate the average fan because of limitations of venue size and capacity,” the festival’s website says. “We want you to see all the bands you want to see. We also want you to feel you are getting the value out of the MusicfestNW wristband you spent your hard earned money on.”

With the change in format, organizers were able to keep the cost of wristbands lower and make the event more all-ages friendly.

Presented on two stages set up between the Morrison and Hawthorne bridges, the 2014 lineup includes mashup master Girl Talk, indie rock kingpins Spoon, synth-pop trio Future Islands and throwback pop group Haim. The festival will also feature food carts, an art pavilion, a poster mart and a headphone disco — a tent with DJs spinning tracks to personal headphones.

Tickets for MusicfestNW are $65 per day or $100 for a two-day pass. VIP tickets are also available. For more information, visit www.musicfestnw.com or email info@musicfestnw.com.

— Reporter: 541-383-0350, jwasson@bendbulletin.com