AIMEE MANN Wed 5/10 Revolution Hall SHERYL NIELDS

SUPER PICK

AIMEE MANN, JONATHAN COULTON
(Revolution Hall, 1300 SE Stark #110) Whether she’s playing a toeless nihilist in The Big Lebowski or delivering sarcasm-laced lyrics throughout her nine-album solo catalog, Aimee Mann brings dry humor to everything she does. It came out in 1999, but I’m still unsure if the song “Save Me” is an honest plea for a savior or a sardonic rip at hyper-masculine hero complexes. By now it’s fair to call Mann an alt-rock legend—her career began with the 1980s new wave band ’Til Tuesday, and it continues to expand with March’s Mental Illness. It’s her first solo album since 2012’s Charmer, and trades buzzy guitar-pop for down-tempo folk. On Mental Illness, Mann leans into the melancholy tendencies of her music, and as a result, is much more straightforward with her pain. Against acoustic guitar and the sweeping melodrama of orchestral strings, its 11 tracks illustrate how the simplest of plans can feel grandiose when you’re depressed. This begins with opening track “Goose Snow Cone,” which pairs the soft jingle of bells and acoustic guitar as she tells herself, “Gotta keep it together when your friends come by.” Mann’s barely-there Virginia accent gives some muted twang to her lyrics, which often draw from the deep well of salt-of-the-earth aphorisms and musical clichés that she calls the “tumbleweed lexicon” (“You Never Loved Me”). The album’s standout, “Simple Fix,” tracks the cyclical nature of entering and exiting periods of darkness with nervous piano spasms, shadowy harmonies, and the fatalistic whine of strings. This new record is merely the latest in Mann’s long line of achievements, but it’s a remarkable example of her abilities as a musician—and in this particular instance, her reclaiming and mastering of the “sad folk” stereotype with an expansive landscape of what Mental Illness looks like for her. CIARA DOLAN

WEDNESDAY 5/10

ODDISEE, GOOD COMPNY, OLIVIER ST. LOUIS, BLOSSOM, HANIF
(Hawthorne Theatre, 1507 SE César E. Chávez) Don’t let the laidback grooves fool you: Amir Mohamed el Khalifa—better known as Oddisee—isn’t afraid to tackle the big issues. The emcee/producer’s latest work, The Iceberg, offers a global perspective on humanity, politics, love, and life, sounding both retro-tasty and perfectly of this moment. With a stacked bill that includes Berlin-based soul-blues practitioner Olivier St. Louis alongside Portland-grown talent like Blossom and HANiF, this is no night to stay home. NED LANNAMANN

AIMEE MANN, JONATHAN COULTON
(Revolution Hall, 1300 SE Stark) Read our super pick

THURSTON MOORE GROUP, MARISA ANDERSON
(Mississippi Studios, 3939 N Mississippi) Everyone got real mad at Thurston Moore for breaking up indie rock’s greatest mom-and-pop enterprise, but domestic changes aside, the ex-Sonic Youth guitarist has not wavered from his chosen musical course. Rock N Roll Consciousness is the latest solo album in Moore’s long catalog, and while its five tangled-guitar walkabouts range in length from six to 12 minutes, it’s among the most approachable music he’s made since 1992’s Dirty, boasting modest melodies, head-nodding grooves, and a bit of stormy squall to space things out. Moore’s since relocated to London, but the noise-jam drones of his New York City home are firmly cemented into the foundation of Rock N Roll Consciousness, and the record maintains the tradition of iconic New York bands like the Velvet Underground and Television (and, of course, Sonic Youth). When Moore and his wire-tight band—which includes Sonic Youth drummer Steve Shelley, My Bloody Valentine’s Deb Googe, and Nought’s James Sedwards—come through tonight, expect a guitar solo (or 90). NED LANNAMANN

THURSDAY 5/11

EVERCLEAR, VERTICAL HORIZON, FASTBALL
(Crystal Ballroom, 1332 W Burnside) Much is made of Portland’s cultural exports from the 1990s, but nobody really brags about Everclear. Maybe that’s not surprising for a city that prizes its status as a one-time hub for underground music. Also, that dude’s goatee is just plain horrendous. But Everclear’s appeal stands in stark contrast to much of today’s guitar music, and is an almost comically conspicuous version of what still draws young music fans to ’90s radio rock anthems. These songs are weirdly bereft of irony. As a teenager, I preferred hearing Rivers Cuomo circle around the pain of an absent father with jokey lyrics like “Somebody’s Heine is crowding my icebox.” But a half-decade into adulthood, and I don’t mind hearing Art Alexakis get right to the point: “Father of mine, tell me where have you been.” NATHAN TUCKER

FRIDAY 5/12

THE FLAMING LIPS, KLANGSTOF
(Roseland, 8 NW 6th) If you lost track of the Flaming Lips’ sprawling discography—which in recent years has been littered with covers of full albums, a Miley Cyrus collaboration, and multiple releases embedded inside of gummy candies—their latest “normal” studio album, Oczy Mlody, came out in January. It continues the Oklahoma City band’s recent trend of mellow inscrutability, dispensing with the scabrous punk of their acid-damaged early records and the baroque flying buttresses of their 1999 masterwork The Soft Bulletin in favor of barely-there synth comedowns and discursive astral burbling. While the new album probably won’t contribute any pop-anthem staples along the lines of “Do You Realize?” and “The W.A.N.D.” to future Flaming Lips setlists, they’ll probably do a few token numbers before devoting the rest of the evening to the big hits, accompanied by the exploding communal orgasm that’s now de rigueur at their live shows. There will probably be costumes, confetti, down-the-rabbit-hole visual nonsense, and plenty of drug-damaged goodwill. NED LANNAMANN

CHUCK PROPHET AND THE MISSION EXPRESS
(Doug Fir, 830 E Burnside) Bobby Fuller dropped two perfect gems of California pop in 1965—“Let Her Dance” and “I Fought the Law”—before mysteriously dying the following year at age 23 in a parked car. (Murder and suicide have both been theorized, although Fuller’s body bore no trace of injury.) If Fuller didn’t stick around long enough to make it into the rock ’n’ roll pantheon, Chuck Prophet certainly deserves to. The San Francisco songwriter has more than two dozen albums to his credit (whether under his own name or his ’80s band Green on Red), and starting with 2012’s excellent Temple Beautiful, seems to be hitting an unmatched stride. His new one is called Bobby Fuller Died for Your Sins, and its February release garnered notice for its “California noir” vibes. While it pays tribute to lost ones like Fuller, David Bowie, and murdered San Francisco security guard Alex Nieto, it should also be acknowledged as a testament to Prophet’s peerless songcraft. Wonderful songs like “Bad Year for Rock and Roll” and the Ray Davies-esque “If I Was Connie Britton” are tunes that’ll still be on your desert-island playlist years from now. NL

SATURDAY 5/13

ST. JOHNS BIZARRE: THE THERMALS, Y LA BAMBA, DUDE YORK, ILLMAC, LITTLE STAR, RED YARN, DJ DIRTYNICK
(St. Johns Plaza, N Lombard & Philadelphia) This Saturday the St. Johns Bizarre celebrates 11 years with its annual takeover of Portland’s northernmost neighborhood. Six blocks of crafts, street food, and an eclectic lineup of live music will threaten to turn the festival into a citywide destination. Longtime local favorites Y La Bamba join St. Johns native Illmaculate, who’s returning to the neighborhood that inspired his hip-hop. Seattle’s loaning us Dude York, whose Hardly Art debut Sincerely exhumes the best parts of arena riffage, reinvigorating rock with a youthful ebullience that serves them much better than it does the reanimated corpses that usually grace the stages of actual arenas. NT

PARADE DAY BLOWOUT: MIC CAPES, JENNY DON’T AND THE SPURS, BITCH’N
(The Fixin’ To, 8218 N Lombard) This lineup looks completely illogical on paper: You’ve got classic country outfit Jenny Don’t and the Spurs, dance-punk super-group Bitch’n, and venerated local emcee Mic Capes, who dropped 2016’s game-changing album Concrete Dreams. Add that all up and toss in greasy, Southern-inspired comfort food, and you’ve got more than enough reasons to spend the day in St. John’s for The Fixin’ To’s annual Parade Day Blowout. The seven-year-old bar only converted to a live music venue last year, but it’s already established a reputation as North Portland’s best hub for local music, and today’s motley bill is a prime example of why. Coinciding with the St. John’s Bizarre, the Parade Day Blowout goes all day long, so you can either come and go from the festivities or post up at The Fixin’ To and get your all-day-drink on. SANTI ELIJAH HOLLEY

PAAVALI JUMPPANEN
(Lincoln Hall at PSU, 1620 SW Park) For the past 15 years, Finnish piano player Paavali Jumppanen has traveled around the globe, bringing technical skill and innate musicality wherever he goes. Lucky for us, he touches down in Portland this weekend to play back-to-back solo recitals that kick off with a dozen short compositions from Claude Debussy and wrap up with a pair of sonatas from Ludwig van Beethoven. The brilliant setlist happens to include some of the most tender sounds you’ll ever hear from a keyboard: Debussy’s three-minute impressionistic marvel “The Girl with the Flaxen Hair,” as well as the justifiably famous opening movement to the Moonlight Sonata. A later work from Beethoven also shares today’s program—his Opus 81a, which concludes in epic fashion with one of the most thrilling finales found throughout any of the composer’s 30+ sonatas. BRIAN HORAY

REAL LIFE BUILDINGS, WALTER ETC., LUBEC, CLOVVER
(Black Water Bar, 835 NE Broadway) Over the past few years, indie rock has seen a renaissance in the form of the bedroom solo project. But the question remains: With all of this focus on singular voices, is there any room left for the rock ’n’ roll super-group? Applying this term seems silly, considering the members of Real Life Buildings don’t share the household recognition of the Traveling Wilburys or Temple of the Dog. But the Matthew Van Asselt-led group connects all of Brooklyn’s finest performers. Real Life Buildings just released their sophomore album, Significant Weather, an expansive work of maximalist bedroom-pop. And while this descriptor might seem contradictory, when Van Asselt’s David Bermanesque vocals pair with airy synth, punchy drums, and swelling gang vocals, the term makes sense. It’s the sound of five artists collectively banging at the framework of the rugged individualist indie rock narrative. CAMERON CROWELL

SUNDAY 5/14

PAAVALI JUMPPANEN
(Lincoln Hall at PSU, 1620 SW Park) See Saturday’s preview.

TURTLENECKED, SURFER ROSIE, TRUCK
(The Know, 3728 NE Sandy) Though he emerged as Turtlenecked just last fall, Portland’s Harrison Smith has already amassed a substantial catalog. From his early bedroom recordings to the singles from his forthcoming album Vulture, Smith’s music exists at a crossroads between 1990s alternative emo and brutish art-punk. For his first show of the year, he’ll share a bill with the “anti-instrumentalists” of Truck and Good Cheer Records labelmates Surfer Rosie, who don’t yet have any recordings online. Those intrigued by the mystery will just have to check out the show for themselves. CERVANTE POPE

SUMMER CANNIBALS, THE VELVET TEEN, ISKA DHAAF
(Rontoms, 600 E Burnside) Most of the last vestiges of the Velvet Teen’s early modesty were blown out of the water by 2015’s manic All Is Illusory. For the past several years, the Santa Rosa, California, group has followed the propulsive drive of drummer Casey Deitz’s wildly inventive backbeat into new avenues of sound. Lead by the liquid vocals of Judah Nagler, the Velvet Teen’s textured compositions can spark both tender introspection and abrasiveness, depending on how raucous they want to push their technical capacities. On “Eclipses,” the band stretches their legs on high-energy melodicism, rooted in prog-y art noise, and bringing in sonically trippy elements like phaser sounds and tastefully layered synth. Experimental edges are revealed on standouts “Manifest” and “Pecos.” There appear to be few musical barriers that the Velvet Teen can’t obliterate, and yet they’re still one of the best live bands you’re liable to catch in the world. RYAN J. PRADO

MONDAY 5/15

NICK JAINA, MONTHS
(Turn! Turn! Turn!, 8 NE Killingsworth) Multi-talented Portland artist Nick Jaina has garnered acclaim not only for his evolving musical sphere, but as a noted author and the co-founder of Satellite Ballet and Collective in New York City. His 2016 album Brutal Lives is a collection of compositions arranged for a contemporary dance performance. Filled with ambient noise collages and free-range instrumental meandering, Brutal Lives teems with genre-dusting tracks, like the hip-hop peppered “Telepathic Teleplay,” which fidgets in grandiose piano melodies and finds a rhyme-spitting Jaina worming through a speakeasy indie-pop banger. Similarly, the angsty rocker “Come to My Coast” writhes in open spaces driven by a cavernous drum beat and strange buzzing sounds. The remainder of the record consists of songs written during Jaina’s ambitious 20 Song Game, where he and other composers tried to write and arrange 20 songs in a 12-hour period. This marriage of the meticulous and the spontaneous offers a unique snapshot of one of Portland’s most treasured performers. RJP

TUESDAY 5/16

BOONE HOWARD, KELLI SCHAEFER, GHOST FROG
(Mississippi Studios, 3939 N Mississippi) Read our review of Boone Howard’s new record, The Other Side of Town.