RED FANG, GAYTHEIST (White Owl Social Club, 1305 SE 8th) The metal-tinged power rock of Gaytheist is one of those purely pleasurable things in life—like ice cream, or Lee Van Cleef. The Portland trio's latest album Hold Me... But Not So Tight was just released on Seattle-based label Good to Die Records, and it sees outspoken gay frontman Jason Rivera leading the stampede on another collection of roaring, heavy tunes that joyously bumps the levels into the red. It's a shame tonight's de facto record-release show is already sold out, since as many people as possible should be exposed to the earcrushing delight that is Gaytheist, but they remain one of Portland's most prolific and frequently performing bands; their next local show will be within your grasp. Headliners Red Fang have just announced their third album will come out later this year on Relapse, to be produced by the Decemberists' Chris Funk, who also helmed their last one, Murder the Mountains. NED LANNAMANN Also see My, What a Busy Week!
AKRON/FAMILY, AVI BUFFALO, M. GEDDES GENGRAS (Mississippi Studios, 3939 N Mississippi) Akron/Family decided to throw restraint out the window when recording their sixth album, Sub Verses. Loud, untidy, and surprising, the album is experimental and masculine. The best thing about A/F has always been their ability to focus on not giving a shit about popular opinion. While many of their Brooklyn peers tailor albums to be cachet magnets, Akron/Family—some of whom live, or have lived, in Portland—continue to innovate, constantly changing the landscape behind their instantly recognizable three-part harmonies. Those thrilling vocals are still the heart of Sub Verses, but it makes good use of the big, propulsive drums and distorted guitars of less eccentric American rock bands. Avi Buffalo, the moniker/band of Avi Zahner-Isenberg, emerged several years ago with a charming self-titled album of lo-fi pop. Thanks to its low-key sincerity, it managed to ride the wave of whimsy that was happening at the time without coming across as the least bit annoying. REBECCA WILSON