(Roseland, 8 NW 6th) During the throes of my passionate obsession with Khalid Robinson’s breakthrough single, “Location” (which was recently certified platinum), I was shocked to learn the he’s still a teenager. Then in March, the Texas singer released his first studio album, American Teen, which debuted at number nine on the Billboard 200 chart. Though he’s just 19, Khalid’s skills as a vocalist and songwriter surpass the maturity and emotional intelligence you’d expect from someone his age. American Teen’s 15 R&B tracks lay his rich, distinctive voice over eclectic production. Sometimes this sounds like a pop piece fresh out of the ’80s, like on the title track. Other times it’s just on some simple guitar with light, rhythmic beats shit, like on “Saved,” which tells the all-too-relatable tale of waiting around for someone to realize what they’re missing: “I’ll keep your number saved ’cause I hope one day you’ll get the sense to call me,” he sings. “I hope that you’ll say you’re missing me the way I’m missing you.” Heartbreak and loss are frequent themes on American Teen— moody and sentimental songs like “Cold Blooded,” “Shot Down,” and “Coaster” could fit into any post-breakup soundtrack. On “8TEEN” Khalid sings about the realities of being a young adult, falling in love for the first time, having strict parents (whom he still lives with), smoking weed, and staying out late: “Let’s do all the stupid shit that young kids do,” he sings. He’s performed breathtaking stripped-down versions of the American Teen tracks on Vevo, plus a cover of Frank Ocean’s “Lost” for BBC Radio 1’s Piano Sessions. Based on this—and the superb quality of his debut—I’m fairly certain Khalid’s show at the Roseland will be chill-inducing. JENNI MOORE
PERFUME GENIUS, SERPENTWITHFEET
(Revolution Hall, 1300 SE Stark #110) Perfume Genius is the project of singer/songwriter Mike Hadreas, whose previous albums—2010’s Learning, 2012’s Put Your Back N 2 It, and 2014’s Too Bright—revolve around themes of sexuality, addiction, chronic illness, abuse, and homophobia. He sings about being gay and the frustration of being punished for something he can’t control, but greets pain with sardonic wit on songs like “Queen”: “No family is safe/When I sashay.” Others are more tender, like “Don’t Let Them In,” where he admits how exhausting it is to constantly repel barbs of hate. With the May release of No Shape, Hadreas imagines his own transcendence in grand, sweeping protest music. This is reflected in fluid movements between genres, from glam rock to the magic of Angelo Badalamenti’s piano ballads to stringed chamber folk to TLC-inspired R&B grooves to volcanic pop anthems. They’re all united by Hadreas’ androgynous voice—he’s always commanding the center, through explosive moments of catharsis and lighter-treading hymns. But No Shape isn’t merely about his own transcendence; “Just Like Love” marvels at the pure joy of young queers who haven’t yet encountered bigots, with instructions to “smother them with velvet.” “Slip Away” is an epic tale of forbidden love and great escape that’s fueled by Hadreas’ desire to eclipse this corporeal realm, since it’s often an inhospitable place to exist—with his love, in his body. But the album’s cinematic closing track, “Alan” (an ode to his partner and musical collaborator, Alan Wyffels) finds peace back in reality. The “violent dreams” he addresses on Too Bright are gone; instead, they “sleep through the night.” “You need me/Rest easy,” Hadreas sings. “I’m here/How weird.” With this simple coda, it’s romantic, defiant, and magnificent, simply to be together in this world. CIARA DOLAN
(Crystal Ballroom, 1332 W Burnside) Australian sample wizards the Avalanches are finally touring the US, a mere 16-plus years after their masterpiece, Since I Left You, introduced the world to their global-junkyard patchwork of gorgeous, danceable sound. They’ll also be drawing from last year’s lovely Wildflower, so wear breathable fabrics and get ready to bliss your body out. NED LANNAMANN
BLONDIE, GARBAGE, JOHN DOE AND EXENE CERVENKA
(Edgefield, 2126 SW Halsey, Troutdale) How cool is Blondie frontwoman Debbie Harry? Ice cold. After all these years, fans are still selling out venues like Troutdale’s Edgefield just to get within earshot of her inimitable yowl. These days Blondie’s touring with fellow rock legends Garbage, and in a recent interview with Entertainment Weekly, Harry and Shirley Manson hinted at some future collaboration. CIARA DOLAN Also read All-Ages Action!
(Roseland, 8 NW 6th) Read our Khalid super pick.
(Mississippi Studios, 3939 N Mississippi) Each note of Palm’s new EP, Shadow Expert, sounds calculated for maximum impact. The Philadelphia band’s songs play like sharp conversations between Eve Alpert and Kasra Kurt’s guitars, which bristle, shriek, and chatter alongside the percussive punctuations of bassist Gerasimos Livitsanos and drummer Hugo Stanley (especially on “Two Toes”). The subdued vocals—particularly Alpert’s—are a welcome salve in this sometimes unforgiving sonic terrain. There’s chaos and conflict, and most of it comes from the band’s inhuman voices, these guitars with so much to say. Songs like “Walkie Talkie” smooth out any roughness, twisting and bending erratic sounds into melody like soft metal. Fans of unpretentious, mathy rock—like that of Cate Le Bon or Portland’s own Lithics—will enjoy the strange language of Palm. CIARA DOLAN
(Hawthorne Theatre, 1507 SE César E. Chávez) The Pacific Northwest’s got plenty of musical pride and joys to brag about, but the Melvins are one of the most enduring. Buzz Osborne (vocals/guitar) and Dale Crover (drums) have released new material almost every year since the ’80s, and the duo’s outdone themselves with their latest, A Walk with Love and Death. This double album merges a full-length, Death, with the score of a short film they produced themselves, Love. In a statement, Crover described the project as “one giant, dark, moody, psychotic head trip” that’s “not for the faint of heart.” The track “What’s Wrong with You” oozes sludgy discomfort, but the Melvins find a way to make even the most nightmare-inducing sounds listenable. CERVANTE POPE
TACOCAT, SUNBATHE, SURFER ROSIE
(Mississippi Studios, 3939 N Mississippi) Known for their belt-able punk anthems about everything from mansplainers to the X-Files’ Special Agent Dana Scully, Seattle’s Tacocat are one of the Pacific Northwest’s most beloved acts. Plus, they put on a fantastic live show—expect high energy and glitter. CIARA DOLAN Read our story on Surfer Rosie.
A BENEFIT FOR TRANS ASSISTANCE PROJECT: MERINGUE, THE BEDROOMS, PETITE
(Pop Tavern, 825 N Killingsworth) Support two great causes while soaking in the sounds of dream pop, new wave, and punk. Handing over a fiver for entry will double as a donation for Trans Assistance Project and a portion of all bar sales will benefit Freeform Portland, the newest comer to the city’s slew of excellent community-driven radio stations. EMILLY PRADO
(Roseland, 8 NW 6th) Purple Rain just popped up on the Billboard album chart at number four, so despite being more than three decades old, Prince and the Revolution’s 1984 classic found itself in the strange position of sharing chart real estate with Kendrick Lamar and 2 Chainz. This is largely due to a brand-new deluxe reissue, but it’s not as out-of-place as it seems; there’s little popular music released between 1984 and 2017 that doesn’t share some DNA with the funk-rock-R&B amalgam that Prince and his stellar backing band pioneered in the early ’80s. That band—with original members Wendy, Lisa, Bobby Z, BrownMark, and Dr. Fink—has reformed to pay tribute to Prince following his untimely death, and they’re coming to Portland tonight, which means that we’ll get to hear classics like “I Would Die 4 U,” “Uptown,” and “Erotic City” performed by the musicians that know ’em best. Oh, and the Roseland has some cool Prince-specific history—its interior walls were painted purple especially for Prince when he played there in 2013. NED LANNAMANN
PORTLAND OPERA: COSI FAN TUTTE
(Newmark Theatre, 1111 SW Broadway) Though the misogynistic undertones of its libretto (and title) can’t be denied, there are five good reasons to catch this madcap production of Così fan tutte—which roughly translates to “women are like that”—regardless of its occasional sexism: 1) Nobody goes to an opera for the plotline, anyways. 2) With crisp perfection, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart composed unparalleled music for the female voice, and leading ladies Antonia Tamer and Kate Farrar are guaranteed to display the upper limits of transportive vocal clarity. 3) All six performances will be sung in Italian, so you can either follow along with the English text projected above the stage, or just close your eyes and allow the most beautiful language in the world wash over you. 4) Intriguingly, Alison Heryer’s new costume design pairs contemporary fashion alongside opulent 18th-century attire. 5) Anytime a live orchestra supports an array of unplugged human voices in the utterly kickass Newmark Theatre, it’s a special occasion. BRIAN HORAY
ALGIERS, MOON DIAGRAMS
(Mississippi Studios, 3939 N Mississippi) Algiers’ brand-new record, The Underside of Power, is frenzied and chaotic, with periodic glimmers of clarity. Like on the title track, where pulsing new wave synth melts away and Franklin James Fisher’s larger-than-life vocals break through the turmoil. The Atlanta four-piece takes pain-filled but cathartic genres like gospel, blues, and punk, and pushes them to their most challenging, often hook-free extremes. The 2015 single “Blood” remains one of the most haunting tracks that somehow still passes for pop in recent memory. Though The Underside of Power can be all over the place—Pitchfork noted its songs “lack cohesion”—in a time like this, for those identifying as left of outright authoritarianism (as the explicitly anti-capitalist Algiers would), cohesion seems like a laughable goal. CAMERON CROWELL
WIMPS, PATSY’S RATS, HORNET LEG, MINI BLINDS, CONDITIONER
(American Legion Local 134, 2104 NE Alberta) Esteemed label See My Friends Records and beloved community space the American Legion Local 134 are proven beacons of Portland’s burgeoning DIY rock scene, so when they team up to present a Saturday night all-ages shindig, you know it’s going to be quite a treat. In addition to sets from some of the city’s best underground pop and shapeshifting punk acts, Seattle’s Wimps will be in town to top off this fully loaded sundae with a bright red slacker-rock cherry. CHIPP TERWILLIGER
(Roseland, 8 NW 6th) Last year, the 20th anniversary of the release of DJ Shadow’s Endtroducing..... came and went without much fanfare. There was no extensive 20th anniversary tour. Only a handful of published retrospectives. Shadow issued an expanded version of the album stocked with demos, outtakes, and remixes. But even he didn’t seem to make a huge deal of it. Make no mistake: Endtroducing..... is a huge deal. It’s a towering artistic achievement, a paragon of sample-based music, and one of the great releases in the past quarter-century of hip-hop AND electronic music. It’s a timeless patchwork of sounds—funk, rock, jazz, soul, ambient, and beyond—produced by an obsessive crate-digger with turntables, a drum machine, and a computer. Perhaps Shadow didn’t give Endtroducing.....’s birthday a major push because he was focused on promoting his latest album, last year’s The Mountain Will Fall. It’s representative of his entire career: impressive in both composition and performance, disdainful of genre boundaries, highly listenable, and largely overlooked in the long shadow of his landmark debut. BEN SALMON
PERFUME GENIUS, SERPENTWITHFEET
(Revolution Hall, 1300 SE Stark) Read our Perfume Genius super pick.
PORTLAND OPERA: COSI FAN TUTTE
(Newmark Theatre, 1111 SW Broadway) See Friday’s preview.
AIMEE MANN, RHIANNON GIDDENS
(Oregon Zoo, 4001 SW Canyon Road) On her excellent 2015 solo debut—Tomorrow Is My Turn—Rhiannon Giddens explored songs she didn’t write, including traditionals and works by (or made famous by) Nina Simone, Sister Rosetta Tharpe, Dolly Parton, and Elizabeth Cotten. With her new album, Freedom Highway, the singer, songwriter, and banjo virtuoso makes good on the promise of her debut’s title. It’s a collection of stunning originals that give voice to African American people through stories and experiences of the past two centuries, from slaves in the 1800s to the victims of police shootings that have anchored a new era of activism in recent years. And Giddens presents all of this through an ambitious, modern, and deeply soulful take on roots music—something she’s done for years as a member of Carolina Chocolate Drops. This Sunday, Giddens brings Freedom Highway to the Oregon Zoo, where she’ll open for wonderful pop-rock singer/songwriter Aimee Mann. BEN SALMON
ROZWELL KID, VUNDABAR, GREAT GRANDPA
(Mississippi Studios, 3939 N Mississippi) With 2014’s Too Shabby, West Virginia Weezer fetishists Rozwell Kid produced one of the best pop-dappled punk records this side of Superdrag’s Regretfully Yours, or, to use a more recent example, the Sidekicks’ Awkward Breeds. As a lyricist, main Kid Jordan Hudkins shuns the pop-punk genre’s dense (but typically shitty) metaphor and unflinching candor for inexplicably poignant, “hashtag ’90s kid” slackerisms like Too Shabby’s oft-cited opening line: “Simpsons season 3 and a thing of hummus/This is all I’m need/I’m, like, super low-maintenance.” The group’s new record, Precious Art (which is, like, such an ironic title), fails to capture the lightning-in-a-bottle profundity of its predecessor, and the incessant lowbrow pop culture referencing can seem disingenuous. (A line like “And I’m up at three in the morning/For SeaQuest reruns” is the lyrical equivalent of a pre-stressed Aaahh!!! Real Monsters T-shirt.) But these shortcomings are offset by dashes of bored brilliance, like the candy-coated “UHF on DVD” and breakup anthem “Booger,” which is both an inadvertent master class in pop poetry and a meta-acknowledgment of the idiom’s inherent juvenility. MORGAN TROPER
ORQUESTRA PACIFICO TROPICALE
(Sellwood Riverfront Park, SE Spokane & Oaks Pkwy.) Portland’s summers justify living here—a welcome, much-needed, and all-too-brief respite from the rain-slicked, death-dreary misery of the rest of the year. And it's hard to think of a better way to enjoy summer than heading to the delightful Sellwood Riverfront Park (a very good park for watching dogs, FYI) to listen to a free show from Portland's sprawling, rambunctious cumbia band Orquestra Pacifico Tropical. If there's better music to listen to on a summer day in a park, humankind has yet to invent it. ERIK HENRIKSEN
THE DOUBLECLICKS, DANIELLE ATE THE SANDWICH
(Siren Theater, 315 NW Davis) Angela Webber—half of the nerd-folk duo the Doubleclicks—will soon depart for Los Angeles, which means this Doubleclicks show will be the FINAL ONE IN PORTLAND (well, for the foreseeable future, anyway). For the past six years, sisters Aubrey and Angela Webber’s scrappy, funny, feminist duo has been one of the better things about this town, with their clever-but-not-cloying, earnest-but-not-sappy folk finding fans everywhere from the Doug Fir to comics conventions. Keep your fingers crossed for stuff from Love Problems, which comes out in August, and features songs like “Out of Charge” (“I wanna give my love to you all day/But sometimes I come up empty/My heart just doesn’t hold charge/The way it did not so long ago”) and “Big Bang,” a duet between Angela and Jonathan Coulton that distills the vast abyss of the cosmos into a breakup (“In space, everything starts moving out,” Coulton sings, “and in between all of the planets is a big and empty vacuum.” “What happened next?” sings Angela. “Somehow our bed becomes 30 miles wide.”) EH
JOAN SHELLEY, MICHAEL HURLEY
(Mississippi Studios, 3939 N Mississippi) Joan Shelley’s voice and songs are the most powerful force in folk music today. That doesn’t necessarily mean the Kentucky singer/songwriter sells more albums, fills more seats, or makes more headlines than any of her contemporaries. But she should, because Shelley—along with her longtime guitar-wizard sideman, Nathan Salsburg—is responsible for two of the very best albums (in any genre) of the past five years. 2017’s Joan Shelley and 2015’s Over and Even are warm, patient, and beautiful works, where songs unfurl at front-porch pace, revealing immaculate arrangements and deceptively memorable melodies delivered at barely more than a whisper. Together, Shelley and Salsburg take simple ingredients and turn out something spellbinding. Folksingers who cross over into mainstream success are few and far between, but it’s easy to imagine Shelley doing it. BS