The Terrastock Nation

- every single band to have played a Terrastock festival to date



= Terrastock =


Welcome to the TERRASTOCK FESTIVALS homepage.


For the latest news regarding the next Terrastock festival, please watch this space





To date, there have been seven Terrastock festivals. The first took place in Providence, Rhode Island, in April of 1997; the second in San Francisco, California, in April of 1998; the third in London, England, in August of 1999; the fourth in Seattle, Washington, in November of 2000, the fifth in Boston, Massachusetts, in October of 2002, and the Sixth back in Providence again in April, 2006.  Terrastock 7 took place in Louisville, Kentucky on June 19th -22nd, 2008.

frogEach Terrastock Festival builds on the successes of the previous ones. The events are conceived in a spirit of peace, love and co-operation purely in order to celebrate the music championed by the The Ptolemaic Terrascope magazine and the Terrascope Online web community.

Terrastock is not an indie-rock A&R feeding frenzy. Bands and artists are there at the personal invitation of the organisers because we love their music and they love the way we do things. It's simply about the music, and about the whole Terrastock spirit. If you've ever been to a Terrastock, you'll know what we mean...

And if you haven't, read what others have said here.


Links to Articles About & Reviews of Past Events


The "Terrastock Nation" - An Overview Of The Bands & Artists



T1: Providence, RI, USA April 25-27, 1997

T2: San Francisco, CA, USA April 17-19, 1998

 (link to) Terrastock 2 report from Aural Innovations

(link to) T3 report by (comedian) Stewart Lee writing in the Sunday Times

T3: London, England, UK August 27-29, 1999

T4: Seattle, Washington, USA November 3-5, 2000

(link to) Terrastock 4 report from Amplitude Equals One Over Frequency Squared

T5: Boston Massachusetts, USA October 11-13, 2002

Terrastock 5 report by Windy Weber (of  Windy & Carl)

(link to) Terrastock 6 review from Plan B magazine

T7: Review in the Wire by Byron Coley


Praise for the Terrastock Festivals

For over fifteen years, Ptolemaic Terrascope magazine has been one of the most respected, widely read, frequently quoted independent music journals in the world. Throughout nearly three-dozen issues, the Terrascope has championed the finest offerings from the world of folk, beat, and punk, to psychedelia, krautrock, prog, free jazz, electronica, and nearly every genre in between. Editor Phil McMullen has presented exclusive interviews with pioneers in each of the aforementioned musical styles.

 Terrastock is the annual event staged by Ptolemaic Terrascope since 1997. Both a celebration and examination of psychedelia and experimentation, this festival links bands from the '60s, such as Tom Rapp/Pearls Before Swine and the Silver Apples, with contemporary bands, including Sonic Youth and Bardo Pond. More than just a music festival, this critically acclaimed event has been described as “a gathering of true believers, somehow combining the retro-obsessed nerdiness of a Star Trek Convention with the most open-minded and avant-garde elements of the indie rock underground, all gathered together under the genre-spanning umbrella of psychedelia.” (MOCA Los Angeles)

"The message of underground music festivals like Terrastock can be summarized in two words: dig deeper. In some ways, the music at the festival, a mix of current underground bands and their obscure antecedents from the 1960's and 70's, wasn't any more experimental than elements of what the Beatles and John Lennon or Pink Floyd and its former leader, Syd Barrett, did. But as a rule it promoted the music that didn't get the acclaim, often because it was too bizarre or ahead of its time to win recognition.

“But Terrastock is not a festival that rewards success. Popularity may disqualify a band forever from the hipster collector underground. Some see this as a sign of closed-minded obscurantism, in which the esoteric is lauded regardless of its merit. But the truth is that Terrastock and its audience are part of a necessary support system, because in a music business centered on the search for the next big thing, someone has to dig through record catalogues to discover the next good thing, or search the archives to rediscover the last lost thing." - New York Times

"[From] mind-melting musical dreamscapes [to] experimental films…, the Terrastock festival celebrated the furthest fringes of indie rock, revisiting a time when hallucinogenic, psychologically daring music threatened to break into the mainstream. From fairy-tale folkies to garage-rock bands with a penchant for feedback, Terrastock showcased the wide-ranging musical legacy of the Summer of Love." - San Francisco Chronicle

"Since its debut in 1997 in Providence, RI, and with subsequent fests in San Francisco (1998) and London (1999), [and Seattle (2000)], Terrastock has brought guitar worship, brotherly love and a shared sense of community back to the rock festival. Each day had its moments of brilliance and surprise…. It was an equally entertaining and informative experience." - Philadelphia City Paper

“Terrastock is the annual event that long-running psychedelic-rock magazine Ptolemaic Terrascope has been staging since 1997, which will make Seattle the fourth city the magazine has chosen for the staging of its event. We, as a music-loving community, should be grateful for the opportunity to have so many great fucking bands descending from all over the globe upon the teensy Showbox this weekend. Terrastock runs for three days and boasts over 30 bands, all of whom are venerable, incendiary, and psychedelic.

“This festival promises to be sold out. There are too many good bands playing for it not to be. Though the Showbox is guaranteed to be packed and sweaty as hell, and the audience will most likely be full of stoned idiots, the music will make the night stomachable.” – The [Seattle] Stranger

“That's what three days of Terrastock was all about -- the music and its powerful effects. The festival was remarkable for its lack of posturing, lack of hip self-consciousness, and for the patience and care attendees put into listening to 30-odd diverse acts. [It was] an exhausting, majestic, and often overcrowded Terrastock that somehow stacked up to even more than the sum of its weighty parts.”  - The Austin Chronicle

“A hurried scan of the line-up reveals that Terrastock is, refreshingly, NOT the Identikit McFestival we've been enjoying all summer. Oddities, freakouts & happenings are what Terrastock offers…. No other festival this year could boast such a special and singular line-up.” – Melody Maker [UK]

"The festival linked bands from the '60s, such as the Silver Apples, with what's happening in the '90s. That made it a far more dynamic and vital demonstration of psychedelia then the highly touted "Summer of Love" exhibit that's going up at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in Cleveland." - Providence (RI) Journal-Bulletin

"With seven hours or more of music every sunny, beautiful day, Terrastock presented the alternative to any alternative, with a premium placed on home-brewed experimentation and musical innovation." - Addicted To Noise

"Part music festival and part flea market, but without a hint of the crass commercialism or careerism that invades most music-industry confabs, Terrastock proved to be less about listening to bands and all about sharing a vibe: It was nothing less than a gathering of true believers, somehow combining the retro-obsessed nerdiness of a Star Trek Convention with the most open-minded and avant-garde elements of the indie rock underground, all gathered together under the genre-spanning umbrella of ‘psychedelia.’

"The most fascinating part of the weekend for me was that no one seemed to have any trouble reconciling the huge stylistic gulf between, say, a Mary Lou Lord and a Flying Saucer Attack, or the humorless drone of Azusa Plane juxtaposed to the giddy pop of Olivia Tremor Control. That was the lesson I learned this weekend, the key to what all of these incredibly different and diverse musicians and fans had in common: For the Terrastock Nation, psychedelic isn't a sound or a song or a style; it's a state of mind." 

[New] Jersey Beat

"To the transfixed fans who sat crosslegged on the floor in front of the stage, it was a brilliant showcase of some of the many different musical ways to transcend circa 1997, as well as a reaffirmation that 'mind expansion' (to quote the simple but eloquent slogan from the T-shirt of one young listener) is a worthwhile goal that has never really gone out of vogue…."  Jim DeRogatis, author of Kaleidoscope Eyes and Let It Blurt, the biography of music critic, Lester Bangs.

Go Back to the Table of Contents