Nathaniel Rateliff & the Night Sweats - on the Mt. Hood Stage at Pickathon, 2019

Nathaniel Rateliff & the Night Sweats - on the Mt. Hood Stage at Pickathon, 2019

Gerard O’Sullivan/opbmusic

Town Mountain at Pickathon 2019

Town Mountain at Pickathon 2019

Gerard O’Sullivan/opbmusic

North Carolina bluegrass band Town Mountain is making their fifth appearance at Pickathon this year and it’s easy to see why. The festival may have strayed from its rootsy beginnings over the years, but the traditionalists are always welcome. I caught the band twice this weekend, and both sunny sets offered the same experience of watching festival goers gradually and happily rise from their seats (i.e., the ground) to dance and kick up a little dust. File this under: an ideal way to spend a Pickathon afternoon. – Mike Dempsey

Altin Gün at Pickathon 2019

Altin Gün at Pickathon 2019

Gerard O’Sullivan/opbmusic

Altin Gün was a curiosity for a lot folks at the festival grounds. The collective was formed by Dutch bass player Jasper Verhulst after he fell in love with classic Turkish music of the 1970s while on tour in Istanbul several years ago. The band, fronted by Turkish musicians Merve Dasdemir and Erdinc Yildiz Ecevit, plays a modern psych rock-influenced collection of Anatolian cover songs and standards that were mostly new to the Pickathon crowds. Apparently, a hit is a hit. Within minutes of the start of their set at the Mt. Hood Stage, a dance party broke out. But what really stood out was Ecevit’s performance. He is quite possibly the most joyful and emotive synth player I have ever heard (not an instrument you typically associate with those words). – Jerad Walker

Mereba at Pickathon 2019

Mereba at Pickathon 2019

Gerard O’Sullivan/opbmusic

Mereba mixed hip hop, R&B, folk, reggae, and other genres at her Saturday evening set at the Treeline Stage, and it’s hard to pick a favorite. Her set was both joyful and emotional, and a cover of Bob Marley’s “I Shot the Sheriff” felt like a kind or reclaiming and reminded me of how urgent and powerful those words can be. She’s an incredibly moving performer, and seems very much on the cusp of greatness. All that and we still found the time to sing happy birthday to her drummer. – Mike Dempsey

Viagra Boys at Pickathon 2019

Viagra Boys at Pickathon 2019

Gerard O’Sullivan/opbmusic

Viagra Boys’ set at the Woods Stage got off on the right foot. As the band wrapped up a quick soundcheck, singer Sebastian Murphy noticed the laid-back setting — people sitting on hay bales, hammocks swaying in the distance, and a few antsy die-hards up front. “I’ve never played for a bunch of people sitting down,” he scowled. “Fucking hippies! Come on, stand up!” Then all hell broke loose. The Swedish band launched into an hour of blistering post punk that relied heavily on gravitas, grimy bass lines, and a saxophone that sounded more like angry traffic. It was all egged on by the on-stage antics of Murphy, who crawled around on the stage, disrobed, and spit beer in the air. The energy was infectious. That same lazy crowd from before was whipped into a total frenzy. A hapless fan even tried to stage dive. – Jerad Walker

Viagra Boys at Pickathon 2019

Viagra Boys at Pickathon 2019

Gerard O’Sullivan/opbmusic

Flasher at Pickathon 2019

Flasher at Pickathon 2019

Gerard O’Sullivan/opbmusic

Washington, D.C., rock band Flasher’s sound is relentlessly energetic and their live show is no exception. At the Treeline Stage, the band won over a tired afternoon crowd through sheer force of will. The trio, decked out in (almost matching) mesh attire plowed through a purposefully shortened performance of songs mostly culled from their criminally underrated 2018 release “Constant Image.” – Jerad Walker

Lambchop at Pickathon 2019

Lambchop at Pickathon 2019

Gerard O’Sullivan/opbmusic

Lambchop has been close to my heart for over twenty years, so getting to see them in the very intimate Lucky Barn setting was a special experience. The Nashville band has been pared down a bit from their 15+ member lineups, but they can still build up to a gorgeous crescendo in ways you don’t always see coming. I will admit to being a little confused by the interview format in the Lucky Barn (Kurt Wagner seemed to share my confusion), but this was a tantalizing taste of what’s to come from their evening Woods set on Sunday. – Mike Dempsey

Julia Jacklin at Pickathon 2019

Julia Jacklin at Pickathon 2019

Gerard O’Sullivan/opbmusic

As festival headliner Nathaniel Rateliff and The Night Sweats roared on a distant hill, a completely different kind of concert was happening on the Treeline Stage. Julia Jacklin played an intimate and subtly powerful set to a capacity crowd who hung on the Aussie songwriter’s every word. It was an incredibly endearing performance with lots of funny interplay between the musician and the audience. “This festival is different from others because they treat [the audience] well,” Jacklin said at one point. “Typically, the organizers of these things think that the music is going to compensate for the shitty environment that they force you into. We can only do so much,” she quipped. Just in case, Jacklin called in some favors to close the show and was joined by Courtney Marie Andrews and Katherine Paul of Black Belt Eagle Scout for her final two songs. – Jerad Walker

Nathaniel Rateliff & the Night Sweats - on the Mt. Hood Stage at Pickathon, 2019

Nathaniel Rateliff & the Night Sweats - on the Mt. Hood Stage at Pickathon, 2019

Gerard O’Sullivan/opbmusic

Help at Pickathon 2019

Help at Pickathon 2019

Gerard O’Sullivan/opbmusic

Miya Folick at Pickathon 2019

Miya Folick at Pickathon 2019

Gerard O’Sullivan/opbmusic

Bodega at Pickathon 2019

Bodega at Pickathon 2019

Mike Baden/opbmusic