Radiation City are from Portland, Oregon; that is, the Pacific Northwest, and the largest city in Oregon state. I may know little about the geography of America, but I’ve grown up knowing about this city because of the constant stream of exciting and sometimes heartbreakingly brilliant musicians that have come from there.
So, onto the band. For me, they’re hitting all the right notes: they’re from the home of Elliott Smith; they’re an indie band; they have an awesome lead female vocalist. Though they’re fairly unknown this side of the Atlantic, Radiation City aren’t new to the music scene, but I only wish I had known about them for longer. The band formed six years ago – a four piece composed of Cameron Spies (guitar, vocals), Elisabeth Ellison (vocals, keyboards), Patti King (vocals, keyboards, bass), Randy Bemrose (drums) and Dasha Shleyeva. Their latest album Synesthetica has a fabulous mix of influences, from trippy sixties feels to electronica-inspired tunes, which are all framed by immense vocals. It’s instant atmosphere.
From their melting pot background, a sound has formed that feels new and yet fits perfectly within its indie history – it’s fresh, listenable and for me, constantly on repeat. The artwork for the album is pretty striking too. Luckily for me, they’re hitting up the Hope and Ruin at the end of the month, as part of a European tour in which the band take on Germany, Italy, Switzerland amongst others. Join me in supporting their stop in Brighton on April 30th!
Radiation City play the Hope and Ruin on the 30 April 2016. Tickets £7+bf, buy here.
By Lou Clement