BOISE -- Organizers and fans of the 2014 Treefort Music Festival gathered at the El Korah Shrine Friday for the festival's sold-out launch party.
That's where local artists, pulsating electronic beats, and a funky location helped kick off the four-day festival scheduled for March 20-23 in downtown Boise.
Friday's 8 p.m. show featured the bizarre, synth-pop stylings of Slow Magic, a DJ and producer who wears a neon tribal mask and plays the drums.
Opening and closing acts included local electronic groups Avtale and Rubicon 7.
The launch party was held in conjunction with the second wave of artists announced for 2014.
NEW ARTISTS ANNOUNCED FRIDAY INCLUDE:
- Polica, an American Synthpop and alternative rock band from Minneapolis, Minnesota
- RJD2, a Philadelphia DJ and turntablist, whose credits include the opening sequence of AMC's "Mad Men"
- Blockhead, an avante garde Manhattan-based hip hop producer
- Dan Deacon, a Baltimore electronic musician whose space-styled music is marked by audience participation at live shows
So far, more than 96 bands have been confirmed for Treefort 2014, with more waves of artist announcements expected in the coming weeks. Last year's festival included nearly 200 artists.
While many are relatively unknown, organizers say they represent the latest in underground, non-mainstream music. Genres represented include everything from pop to heavy metal, hip hop, electronica, folk, and classic rock.
The festival this year will be about more than just music.
"We've added some new components," said festival director, Eric Gilbert. "There's a sort of tech fest thing that's going to happen during the festival called Hack Fort, and then we're doing a film festival as well."
They will also have Story Fort, Yoga Fort, Ale Fort, and comedy showcases.
"We've sort of been applying the concept of pairing emerging artists from all over the country with emerging artists here in the musical realm, and now pairing that with tech talent and pairing that with film talent," said Gilbert.