Hear Unknown Mortal Orchestra's 17-Minute Jam "SB-02"

Oh, the things musicians record over the holidays to get away from the relatives for a few hours!

umo sb02

Got 17 minutes and some mind-altering substances to spare? Then take a moment to decompress from the holidays with Unknown Mortal Orchestra.  Last year around this time, the Portland-via-New Zealand psych-pop trio uploaded a 22-minute ambient drift called "SB-01" online. This Christmas, Ruban Nielson and friends recorded a sequel. Appropriately titled "SB-02," the quarter-hour jam is another ...   More
Friday, December 26, 2014 MATTHEW SINGER

The Pickathon Superlatives

From Angel Olsen and Diarrhea Planet to shirtless bros, feral children and fried chicken buns, here are the best things we heard, saw and consumed at Pickathon 2014.


“There are a lot of music festivals,” said Andrew Savage of Parquet Courts early into his band’s set amongst the trees of Pendarvis Farm, “but there’s only one Pickathon.” The slacker affect of his voice may have muddled his sincerity, but there’s no arguing against the truth of that statement. Pickathon is truly one of a kind—to the point that it probably doesn’t even deserve to ...   More
Thursday, August 7, 2014 WW MUSIC STAFF

Photo Review: Little Dragon & Unknown Mortal Orchestra at Roseland Theater, 4/10


Little Dragon is one of the most well put-together live bands out there, and the Swedish electro-soul quartet proved it last Thursday night at Roseland Theater. Overcoming a sound system that tragically consumed opener Unknown Mortal Orchestra whole, the band kicked off the 2014 Soul'd Out Music Festival with set of meticulously arranged, precisely played futurist R&B, drawn primarily from ...   More
Tuesday, April 15, 2014 MATTHEW SINGER

Cuts of the Week

Five new songs from Portland artists you need to hear.

toxic holocaust

Every Friday, LocalCut collects the week's new Portland music and puts it all in one place for you, the faithful reader, to enjoy. It's like MTV's The Week In Rock, with less Tabitha Soren.1. Unknown Mortal Orchestra, "Swing Lo Magellan"This week, Unknown Mortal Orchestra released The Blue Record, an EP primarily featuring acoustic versions of tunes from the psych-pop group's hazily hungover  ...   More
Friday, November 1, 2013 MATTHEW SINGER

Top Five Must-See Acts at MusicfestNW

by Ryan White

Top 5
Ryan White is the former music editor of The Oregonian. Titus Andronicus (9:30 pm Friday, Crystal Ballroom)In an alternate reality, Portlandia stars New Jersey’s Titus Andronicus, and the show’   More
Wednesday, September 4, 2013 WW MUSIC STAFF

Willamette Weekend: 14 Things to Do in Portland, April 5-7


Friday, April 5 Wine Rush Indie, artisan wineries from the West Coast—the Willamette to Napa valleys—rush Portland with their rare and hard-to-find bottles of pinot noir to primitivo. Taste unknown vintages alongside bites from local chefs. Leftbank Annex, 101 N Weidler St. 5:30-8:30 pm. $75. 21+. Brent Weaver The George Fox University faculty member, one of the city’s most accomplished ...   More
Friday, April 5, 2013 WW Culture Staff

Album Review: Unknown Mortal Orchestra, II (Jagjaguwar)


The first album by Unknown Mortal Orchestra was exactly that: a first album—the creation of a fine band which had the pieces of a unique ‘60s psych-soul combination in front of it, yet could only construct the framework. Sometimes that yielded some impressively warped constructions, like “Strangers Are Strange” and “Boy Witch,” but otherwise came off as rabbity and muddled. There is absolutely ...   More
Thursday, January 31, 2013 ROBERT HAM

The Lost Year

In 2011, Ruban Nielson created Unknown Mortal Orchestra. It almost killed him.

Music Stories
Ruban Nielson thought he was going to die.  Not in the metaphorical sense, either: In his first year touring with Unknown Mortal Orchestra, his blog-approved psych-pop group, the 32-year-ol   More
Wednesday, January 30, 2013 MATTHEW SINGER

Cut of the Day: "Swim and Sleep (Like a Shark)," Unknown Mortal Orchestra


According to Unknown Mortal Orchestra's Facebook page, its new album for Jagjaguwar is finished and ready to be mastered. So what does that mean? We have to wait until 2013 to get our hands on it!! Not cool, fellas. Well, at the very least, UMO knows how to keep fans hungry for more. Throw that little bone out there, with the added gristle of the release of this new single "Swim and Sleep ...   More
Tuesday, September 18, 2012 ROBERT HAM

Top Five Summer Shows In Odd Places

Top 5
The Great Idea, Friday, Aug. 10, at Enchanted ForestIt’s a show in a creepy theme park for kids. And Quasi is playing. Come on, what more do you want?Pop-Up Pool Party, Sunday, Aug. 19, at Portland    More
Wednesday, August 8, 2012 WW MUSIC STAFF


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