Evidence suggests there is no such thing as a universal human experience—only that which we encounter and perceive as individuals—but I'll be damned if I'm the only person in this world who has driven much too fast while blaring Lord Huron's "The Man Who Lives Forever." It is an invincibility ballad guaranteed to soothe even the most persistent existential agita. In fact, the band's entire Lonesome Dreams album is pretty life affirming; it coaxes one to get out and explore. And while founder/guitarist/vocalist Ben Schneider does deal with this matter lyrically—he himself made the pilgrimage from the Midwest to California—the stringed instruments, keys, and aerial voices stretching out across the album's tracks do well to fully evoke the freedom (dare I say, universally) inspired by the wide open spaces of the West. RAQUEL NASSER
128 NE Russell, Portland, OR 97212
Hours: Ballroom open for events only, Cafe open: Tues-Sat 5 pm-"late"