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CITY: Portland
SONG TO DOWNLOAD: "Jupiter Trine Sun"
WEBSITE: herbcraft.bandcamp.com

WHY THEM: Drawn-out, ambient (dare we say "new-age-y"?) psychedelic music isn't an easy brand to market to the frothing masses. But Matt Lajoie manages to cull notable success traversing mystic terrains. Earlier this month, the one-time Cursillista unveiled Ashram to the Stars, his second album under the Herbcraft nom de guerre. Preview track "Jupiter Trine Sun" leans heavily on the sitar, and though mixing Indian music with psych isn't a new idea, it is an idea that ought to be put to use more often. More recently, an Herbcraft set supporting Dinosaur Jr. at the Port City Music Hall doubtlessly freaked a few aging hipsters completely the fuck out. Lajoie and friends just hit Cambridge on July 2 alongside like-minded consciousness-expanders Quilt, Mmoss, and the Fedavees at the Lily Pad; and they are no stranger to the Deep Heaven Now festival in Somerville — they will be featured in its fourth installment on August 6 at PA's Lounge.

ALSO CONSIDERED: HuaK — With cacophonous noise-pop, Huak put up a good fight. But unlike the '60s, the hippies came out on the winning side of this struggle.


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