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Every Day I Rise! Eight Y2K Seattle Bands Who Changed the Game

I write this feature from a place of joy! I’m writing about a group of people from a city that changed my life while they were changing the world! I moved to Seattle in 2001, and I was truly at a low point in my existence with nowhere else to go. At the age of 33, I became a pre-school teacher. By pure fate, I met Dann Gallucci (Modest Mouse, Murder City Devils, Cold War Kids) at a bar on my second day there — and my journey began.

To the outside world, Seattle’s music scene was dead after Grunge. Nothing else could be further from the truth, and I realized that when I arrived. The music community was thriving, and today I want to share with y’all some of my favorite bands from this era. Their impact can still be felt to this very day.

This feature is dedicated to Jeremiah Green of Red Star Theory and Modest Mouse. You were such a kind person, fly HIGH, Brother. I also want to mention there were so many other bands and people that made up the Seattle scene during the late 90s, early 2000s — you know who you are! I write this feature while listening to Red Star Theory with a smile in my heart!

MURDER CITY DEVILS

The devil has never sounded so good, and since 1997, he’s had a brand new bag – they go by the name of The Murder City Devils. This band has become a part of Seattle history; they represent everything that’s good about the underground music scene in this city. When they perform live, it’s an event that can not be missed. Murder City Devils have paid their dues, that’s for sure, and while doing so they have taken their brand of sleazy, whiskey-bleeding rock & roll all over the world! In my book, they are one of the greatest soul bands alive, meaning this crew fucking breathes soul into everything they create. I have to say that I’m pretty lucky to count this bunch of weirdos as true blue homies.

PRETTY GIRLS MAKE GRAVES

I moved to Seattle around the same year that they formed. Their first EP and their debut album Good Health changed my life on so many levels! I was hooked instantly, and after seeing them live for the first time I became a fan for life. Every member of the band played their role to a T, and watching them on stage was magical. Seeing them live was almost a religious experience for me, and I would totally lose my shit!!! Whenever I hear their song “The Get Away,” I get chills, but this tune also gives me the power I need to just do me. That’s the thing about PRETTY GIRLS MAKE GRAVES — their music inspired their fans to live their dreams and never settle on the bullshit that society said we had to be.

As a unit, the musicianship that all of the members put into their songwriting was next level. Andrea’s voice is like no other, and has endless amounts of honest passion. When Derek and Andrea would sing together, they would uplift my spirit to higher heights. Don’t get it twisted — Jay, Nick, and Nathan were also powerful and talented beyond words. I feel so blessed that I got to see them grow as a band and as humans. I loved their debut record, but Elan, their last album featuring Leona Marrs on keys, pushed their musician to other spectrums of sound. Not sure if they know this or not, but PRETTY GIRLS MAKE GRAVES are one of the greatest bands in the world to me.

CARISSA’S WEIRD

Carissa’s Weird’s music is PNW Indie Blues created by Punks who also happen to be friends. I want to say thank you for creating music that will empower us all to feel the sunshine when no sun is shining. When I hear songs like “Halfway Spoken Heart that Feels Comfort in Everything Until it Disappears and Then it’s Gone,” I can hear my inner child speaking to my fears, saying, it’s going to be okay. Matt’s voice is so haunting and powerful; when I hear him sing, I’m glad I’m alive to experience it. Don’t even get me started on Jenn’s voice, because when I hear her, I know that my depression won’t do me in!

Carissa’s Weird is a band of friends that created sonic art because they wanted to bring something special to the world. I know that their music speaks to the human condition in us all and their songs will never get old. If anyone in the band reads this, I want y’all to know that y’all will always mean the world to me, and I know I’m not alone when I say this: Carissa’s Weird RULES!!!

THESE ARMS ARE SNAKES

So what happens when you have a group of very talented musicians from Seattle with a frontman that is possessed by demons from another world? You end up with THESE ARMS ARE SNAKES, who straight made music on their own terms from 2002 until 2009. After three killer albums, mad splits and loads of tours around the world, they called it quits, but their music lives on. If you ever had a chance to see them live, you know that these humans gave their all on stage and knew how to fucking work a crowd into an altered state of mind! 

BOTCH

I got to see BOTCH once. It was their last show at the Showbox, and I will tell y’all they blew my fucking mind! You could feel the love in the room and you could tell that this band meant a lot to loads of people. BOTCH created history and are still doing it to this very day!

THE BLOOD BROTHERS

In 1997, a group of Seattle teenagers got together to form a band that would have a huge impact on music worldwide. The Blood Brothers were the band, and even to this day, no one can replicate their sound. They knew how to pack a song with mad changes, but at the same time they created chaotic harmony. I loved the soulful melodic breakdowns The Blood Brothers were capable of going into at the drop of a dime. In reality, to best experience of their power was to see them do their thing live. Every time I saw them perform live, I was amazed at the way Johnny, and Jordan bounced off of each other. I feel pretty lucky to call The Blood Brothers my homies, and also that I got the chance to record with them. Today CVLT Nation salutes a band that was way before their time, The Blood Brothers! So put on your skeleton crooked feathers and peep all of the madness!

SUNNY DAY REAL ESTATE

When I was surrounded by the massive city of New York, I felt a loneliness that I have never felt in smaller places. There was one band that helped me make sense of my internal despair. Sunny Day Real Estate‘s music was the musical light I needed to get through some of my darkest times ever. I’m sure that I’m not alone in saying that this band’s music has touched many people. Sunny Day Real Estate, to me, was far more than labels, they created tunes that spoke to the feelings that we all went through!

RED STAR THEORY

RED STAR THEORY happens to be one of the greatest Emo Bands to ever do it! Real talk, they might even be more Slowcore – Trip Hop — just check out their song “A Sailor’s Warning.” I want to say thank you to them for creating music that truly saved my life while opening my eyes! Their star will always shine BRIGHT!!!

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