One doesn't really expect Vermont to be a hotbed of musical creativity. The austere and inventive folk reinterpretations of Sam Amidon and Mountain Man aside, the home state of Phish has spawned schools of noodly Phish wannabes, and little else. This theory applies to the Starbucks-groove of fellow Green Mountain Staters Grace Potter and the Nocturnals, a group of classic-rock retreads who look fantastic and sound totally familiar and uninteresting. (Lenny Kravitz fans probably love 'em.) After a few years twirling around the granola-jam circuit, Potter and the Nocturnals have mussed up their hair and glammed up their sound for a shot at the rock 'n' roll brass ring with 2010's self-titled record. At this point I wouldn't bet against them. For something a little more lasting, though, look to openers (and fellow Vermonters) Chamberlin, whose Bitter Blood is a heartfelt, skyscraping, lite-rock effort that's deep in maple-water sincerity and generally sounds fine. NED LANNAMANN
128 NE Russell, Portland, OR 97212
Hours: Ballroom open for events only, Cafe open: Tues-Sat 5 pm-"late"