Decibel Festival Director Sean Horton on This Year’s Highs and Lows


Respect is due. Props, Sean.
I liked the aerial shots of Ballard in the clip.
@2. I watched the entire clip waiting to see Ballard, and then I figured it out :-/
EMP has been an incredibly underutilized venue and Decibel is the perfect fit. Agreed that Max Cooper's "Emergence" was the highlight of the festival this year and meant for SkyChurch. Looking forward to more Decibel shows at EMP.

The Capitol Hill crowd can be obnoxious but so are grumpy and pretentious individuals who can't get down with other people having a good time. The crowd at Decibel is overall not the most "festive" in general, which can be refreshing as it's an intelligent and knowledgeable demographic. But standing still and glaring at revelers affects the vibe of any show just as much as people who are having "too much" fun. In fact, if I was to give one criticism of the crowds this year, it would be that there were a lot of people standing around with judgmental looks on their faces getting irritated by people dancing or having a good time near them. These individuals should loosen up or stick to headphones and skip the late night dance music parties. (But still buy a Decibel pass to support this amazing organization!)

HUGE difference between EDM and underground electronic music. Good on Horton for setting EMP straight. EDM = drugged up American kiddies who are just looking to party. That certainly ain't the whole scene in electronic music. Just the American mainstream one that the uninformed U.S. media has heard of.
missy - You hit the nail on the head here. Decibel has been around now for 12 years and when I founded the organization in 2003, it was largely made up "post rave" fans of electronic music that didn't necessarily connect with electronic music culture. Over the years, our audience has grown younger, more diverse and more female. From my perspective, this is a healthy and natural progression of any organization. The vocal minority that seems to take issue with the audience at Q are largely made up of that older attendees that might be better served sticking to one of the other 11 venues that make up the Decibel program. At bare minimum, they shouldn't single out the one venue that they culturally don't feel a connection to, especially when the music, production value and thought that went into the program there were all spot on. Looking at the size of the crowd, the reviews of the events, the artist comments and the vibe I experienced in the room (particularly for the afterhours) Q was a complete success. I would venture to say 95% of the audience there felt the same. Here's to youth, vitality and the progression of underground electronic music to a new generation. I hope the avoid the same mistakes we did.
If the crowd at Q is the future of electronic music in Seattle, I'll take my old ass home and dance in my living room... Q will eventually fail like every other club, but the bad taste of Decibel's involvement will linger much longer.