To many indie fans, Charles Bradley & His Extraordinaires, Thee Oh Sees, Thundercat, Aesop Rock, CocoRosie, Built To Spill, Youth Lagoon, Hinds and Yacht — highlighted last week in Scene — are familiar names. Go see them. But Treefort Music Fest director Eric Gilbert has some other recommendations that might be less obvious.
1 Christopher Willits: This ambient musician works large-scale visuals into his shows. In addition to headlining Friday (7 p.m., Boise Contemporary Theater) and doing a DJ set Saturday (midnight, Rose Room), he’s also playing for the Yogafort kickoff meditation Friday (10:45 a.m., Rose Room) and speaking at Hackfort (4 p.m. Friday, The Owyhee).
2 Big White: “One of the bands I knew nothing about until we booked them,” Gilbert says. “From Australia. Can’t stop listening to them. Remind me of Talking Heads, The Cure, XTC and other proto-punk ish stuff from that era.” 8 p.m. Friday, Linen Building; 5:05 p.m. Saturday, Radio Boise Campfire Stage.
3 Diarrhea Planet: Six-piece Nashville rock band with four guitarists. “This show is going to be nuts,” Gilbert says. “Super fun shreddy guitar show. Killer tunes. ’70s power-pop type of stuff in the vein of Thin Lizzy or something. It’s awesome and needs to be seen to be believed.” 12:30 a.m. Friday, Neurolux.
4 La Misa Negra: An eight-piece band from Oakland, Calif., the group describes its sound as a unique blend of 1950s- and 1960s-style cumbia and high-energy, Afro-Colombian dance music. 12:15 a.m. Friday, Reef; 10:40 p.m. Saturday, Basque Center.
5 White Denim: Crazy-good rockers from Austin, Texas. “This band rips. This band gets funky. Soul with cool kid cred,” Gilbert says. “Don’t miss them. Can’t go wrong here.” 7 p.m. Saturday, Main Stage.
6 Mild High Club: Critics have noticed that the band’s mastermind, Alex Brettin, wears his psychedelic soft-rock influences on his sleeve. But when those influences are The Beatles and T. Rex, why not? Close your eyes and drift in space. 8 p.m. Saturday, El Korah Shrine; 10:30 p.m. Sunday, Neurolux.
7 Magna Carda: An up-and-coming, female-fronted hip-hop band from Austin, Texas, Magna Carda was spotted by the Treefort team at Fun Fun Fun Fest in Austin. “So excited they could make it,” Gilbert says. 8 p.m. Saturday, Knitting Factory.
8 Oddisee: Forward-thinking, indie-minded rapper unleashes organic grooves with a live band. If you dig the Washington, D.C.-raised musician and his craft, check him out again at Sasquatch Music Fest at The Gorge in May. 11:10 p.m. Saturday, Knitting Factory.
9 Tartufi: This San Francisco trio is a returning Treefort performer. “One of my favorite bands of all time,” Gilbert says. “Prog-pop. Tartufi has always been a band that wows technically but also hits on emotional levels as well. Mostly introspection and joy.” 11:30 p.m. Saturday, Linen Building.
10 Chanti Darling: Formed in 2015, this dance-party-lovin’ group was named this year’s Best New Band in Portland by the Willamette Week. The paper also says Chanti Darling sounds like “a world where Michael Jackson never died, disco never went out of style, and the night never ends.” 12:30 a.m. Saturday, Reef; 4:10 p.m. Sunday, Main Stage.