Musicians: If you're interested in playing a big benefit show for Dignity Village, send a tape or CD to Steve Stone, 401 NE 65th, PDX, 97213, or call 256-6776 by Aug 1.


THURSDAY 6/28

BRO-DOWN TOUR W/ DROWNINGMAN, DARKEST HOUR, NIHILIST, AT A GLANCE

(Fallout Shelter, 400 W Evergreen Blvd, The 'Couve) Washington, D.C.'s Darkest Hour is one of those hardcore/metalcore bands whose music just works. They have a vocalist who sounds like he's amid metamorphosis, with the right balance of "being choked" and "about to choke you," screams. Their guitar solos are slightly metallic, but there's a rhythm guitar to back it all up with the crushing, distorted hardcore sound. And their drummer can keep up with their speed; it's exciting. Can I just give another shout out to the fabulous kids at The Fallout Shelter, and their awesome ability to bring the best East Coast hardcore to our area? They rule. JULIANNE SHEPHERD

PSYCHEDELIC AMERICAN SPOKEN WORD HIPHOP STARRING DINO

(In From the Storm/Groundswell, NE 18th & Alberta) Groundswell Café is run by a woman who's totally committed to promoting independent, unrecognized art, like books that are published locally and the earnest, butter-smooth spoken word by (get this!) her son, Dino! Tonight will be another spoken-word showcase by Dino, whose style is to rap fast, funny, and bend linguistics in a manner similar to Busdriver, backing up his words with a multi-media presentation of Psychedelic America. KATIA DUNN

THRONES, LIGHTNING BOLT, PINK & BROWN, EMERGENCY

(Jackpot Records, 37th & Hawthorne, 4 pm, free; later at Meow Meow, 9 pm) Emergency's last show, since guitarist Amy Heneveld and vocalist Ethan Swan are abandoning us for the Land of our Founding Fathers. Go capture this sad yet exciting moment. See Music pg 17


FRIDAY 6/29

UNWOUND, THE EX, UZ JSME DOMA, SLEEPYTIME GUERILLA MUSEUM

(Crystal) The legend goes that 22 years ago, four Dutch anarchists wanted to start a band, so they drew straws to see who would play what. Sounds like the beginning of a bad joke, but it's actually the beginning of The Ex, one of punk's longest-running bastions of integrity and walk-the-walk leftist politics. The Ex are torchbearers of punk's original anti-establishment premise, but have adapted it so thoroughly, they are practically a genre unto themselves. They began as untrained but enthusiastic rabble-rousers and have forged themselves into respected musical innovators and improvisers. Also, it is ill-advised to miss Unwound, who are widely thought to be in the midst of a renaissance and are playing the best songs of their own 10-year career. JOSH HOOTEN

SUPERSTAR DJ KEOKI

(Ohm) Born in El Salvador, this self-dubbed "Superstar DJ" grew up in Hawaii as plain old Keoki Franconi. He then moved to New York and took a job bussing tables at Danceteria. "I wasn't doing a very good job picking up cups," Keoki admits. "The manager was telling me, 'You better think of something else to do.' I was like, 'I wanna DJ.'" He got his chance one night when the scheduled turntablist didn't show up, and the frantic manager sent then-17-year-old Keoki home to grab his record collection. "He said, 'I don't care what you play, just make sure everybody stays.' I think that was the best piece of advice I ever got," recalls Keoki. The acid-house, breakbeat, and trance producer kept the floor packed at NYC superclubs like Limelight and the World before releasing several mix albums and (in 1997) his first album of original tracks, Ego Trip. He's followed that up with Jealousy, another fine batch of his own tunes, for which he's now on tour. JOHN FERRI

LITTLE WINGS, BOBBY BIRDMAN, BUTTERFLY TRANSFORMATION SERVICE, KIM BAXTER

(Stumptown, SE 42nd & Division) What we have here is a double-dip from two distinct outposts of Portland's sweet indie landscape. Little Wings and Bobby Birdman hail from the majestically strummed, sometimes strolling, fellow-with-a-guitar camp. Their songs are simple, poignant, and astutely catchy all at the same time. Sometimes they walk around the club, find a comfortable seat, and do their set from there. Butterfly Transformation Service is Kathy Foster from All-Girl Summer Fun Band and Urban Legends. Kim Baxter is also in the AGSFB. I would expect nice, but not-too-sticky pop songs you can sing along with. TED THIEMAN


SATURDAY 6/30

SUGARMAN THREE, DJ WEEGEE

(Roseland) If there has ever been a genre to cause me hours of wrenching stomach pain and a plundering Tagamet addiction, it would be that of white boy funk. Most white boys whip out the groove with the same sickening enthusiasm they pony up for their 15th tribal ass-tattoo. It's a hideous genre and anything involving a Posse or a Pepper must be STOPPED. NOW--the Sugarman 3 may be white, but they exude the kind of blood-drenched, basement dirty, down low classic sound that rips the ass in half with its soulful Hammond and sax-driven boogaloo. So, let the Brown Clown Underground keep their dirty penis socks while you discover how to get down for real to the sweetly funkified hard-hitting soul of the Sugarman 3. A.J. ROSE

NO. 13 BABY, THE STANDARD

(Berbati's) Recently, someone asked Black Francis--er, Frank Black--if the Pixies would ever get back together. His response was something like, "Maybe for a benefit show, if one of us was dying." I think No. 13 Baby, Seattle's Pixies tribute band, is a great idea--so many bands rip off the Pixies, it just makes sense to cover their songs. Since the Pixies were one of the few bands that never put out a bad album, No. 13 Baby can't go wrong. JS

HIMSA, SUFFICE, WORLD WIDE WAR, BRUTAL FIGHT, EPHAH, LOCATE

(Fallout Shelter) This is billed as the NW HxC Showcase, featuring Seattle's Himsa (Revelation Records), and a cavalcade of more all-ages hardcore. Like the East Coast scene, NW and West Coast hardcore seems to be flourishing with these tumultuous times. We all predicted it. Now let's work on not getting shut the fuck down. JS

CIRCUS CONTRAPTION

(Dante's) Before radio and television, circuses shocked our senses. But with big-screen special effects and stunt men tumbling 19 stories out of burning buildings, that shit--tigers jumping through hoops and clowns riding tiny bikes--lost its edge. Prepare yourself for neo-vaudeville: this gang juggles a three-ring circus of hoochie-coochie girls, klezmer-ish music, and naughty puppeteering. PHIL BUSSE

VENDETTA RED, RAFT OF DEAD MONKEYS, THE DROPSCIENCE, THE SADIES

(Meow Meow) Toronto's the Sadies have expertly culled rock, country, surf, blues, punk, spaghetti Westerns, bluegrass, crafted several excellent records, and made an excellent career of energetic live performances. Bloodshot Records discovered them in 1998 when they opened for Neko Case, and since then a reverent fan-base has seen fertile growth. The new record, Tremendous Efforts, continues in the Sadies tradition of juxtaposing songs from a wide array of genres and forms--some instrumental, some brooding, and all delivered with an immediacy and fervor that can only be described as punk rock. JEFF DeROCHE


SUNDAY 7/01

DAHLIA, MICHAEL CRENSHAW, LIFESAVAS, CLAN OF THE CAVE MACK, DJ WICKED, GROOVEYARD, DEENA BARNWELL, DJ MILES, DJ AXIOM, DJ PEEK-A-BOO

(Berbati's) With all the recent attention, Dahlia should have no trouble packing the house, and DJ Wicked inspires praise. (He spins the quality "Underground and Old School HipHop" which earns his Wednesday night residency at Jezebel's such a good rep.) But show up early and represent for Deena, the finest hiphop selector in the city. Recently kicked off of KBOO, Deena used to keep me up all night taping her epic, five-hour Sunday morning shifts. Playing everything from the most abstract, poetic, spiritually-conscious hiphop to the most unrepentantly gangsta, Deena provided a true schooling in the best of current hiphop. Give the woman some love. STEPHEN STRAUSBAUGH

AMERICAN STEEL, THE COST, GUESTS

(Meow Meow) While American Steel has always had a self-conscious sort of East Bay punk/hardcore sound, the group has been evolving into something unique and interesting over three records. This month's Jagged Thoughts works through punk, power-pop, untweaked guitar rock, and random flashes of psychedelic beauty to reveal the four-piece to be a very talented group of musicians. It's a standard lineup--two singer-guitarists, a bassist, and a drummer, and the band's sound is still predictably soft-loud and explosive--but it just sounds better. JEFF DeROCHE


MONDAY 7/02

RECLINERLAND CD RELEASE, JEFF LONDON, BLANKET MUSIC, CORRINA REPP

(Blackbird, NE 37th & Sandy) The first show at Portland's extremely cool new club, Blackbird! See CD Review pg 17

CHAMBER MUSIC NW PERFORMS BARTOK, PROKOFIEV, SCHUMANN

(Reed College, Kaul Auditorium) I'm reading this book called The Agony of Modern Music, written in 1954 by a jazz critic named Henry Pleasants. So far, Pleasants asserts that all classical music written after Wagner--including Prokofiev, Bartok, Shostakovich, Stravinsky, and virtually all the best 20th Century composers--is a big bunch of poseur crap. I like this Pleasants guy, because he's ballsy. However, when you hear this performance of Bartok, you'll have to disagree with him. Sure, every variation of melody may have been composed and re-composed by the start of Bela Bartok's career (Hungary, 1903), but there's magic in 44 Duos for Violins--emotions range from tragic and angular to light-footed and celebratory. Though it's not Bartok's most challenging work, it is a far cry from Pleasants' agony. JS

BUTTERFLIES ATTACK, PAN TOURISMOS, IT IS RUBELLA, THE CULOTTES

(Robot Steakhouse, 7 pm, call 288-6857) Butterflies Attack, from Vancouver, BC, is like a tooney: a Canadian gem we Americans can only wish we had. It's laissez-faire guitar pop with rhyming lyrics! JS


TUESDAY 7/03

THE FAINT, PLEASURE FOREVER

(Meow Meow) What is The Faint? Is it A) A glossy band of New Wave moppets from 1985 Berlin--sexing and schmoozing their way through space and time to modern day Portland? or B) Four Midwestern Boys from the same cornbelt scene that brought you self-obsessed wraith Bright Eyes, playing the electronic version of cock rock? Only their hairdresser knows for sure, and Fabrice might even vote "Euro." But nope: Nebraska. The Faint's image is that persuasive. Their music is hyper-carnal in nature, with a voyeuristic feel that applies subtle--but firm--pressure directly to your groin. Their masturbatory, albeit flawless, keyboard lines are all about pleasure and instant gratification. There will be some hip-thrusting, and if their tour is going well perhaps we'll see a smoke machine. It's going to be dirty, sweaty, summertime fun. KATE MERCIER

TIGHT BROS FROM WAY BACK WHEN

(Ash St.) A tight-as-hell, '70s rock band whose entrancing arena presence far exceeds the originality of its music. They'll make you feel like a glamorous extra in Almost Famous, or like you're driving across Arizona in a stanky Eagle smoking schwag, depending on your mood. JS

DJ JASON TINKEY & JOE PATTERSON

(Blackbird) Joe Patterson and DJ Jason Tinkey, the man infamous in the Mercury Letters Section for being anti-Medeski Martin & Wood, are the Blackbird's Tuesday night DJ ensemble. Tinkey knows his shit, spinning some great soul that will get your tootsies all-a-movin'. One time, when my friend requested Small Faces and the 45 skipped, Tinkey calmly removed the plate and replaced it, ignoring our drunken heckles with the utmost dignity. Also, he is a snappy dresser. JS

NINA SIMONE

(Schnitzer) You can thank a Chanel perfume ad for the second coming of Nina Simone. Yes, she is still alive and, at age 68, touring again. One of the most elusive R&B gospel singers from the '60s, Simone fought fame as much as Aretha Franklin embraced it. After recording seven albums in three years and having blow-out fights with record promoters, Simone went into a self-imposed exile, near-penniless and wandering from Paris to Liberia. In 1991, some advertising geek dusted off her cocksure "My Baby Just Cares for Me." It became a smash hit all over again in the U.K. Simone is still the hellcat that she was when she penned the civil rights song "Mississippi Goddam." PB


WEDNESDAY
7/04

MADE FOR TV MOVIE, THE "NEW" TERROR CLASS

(Blackbird) Made for TV Movie, unlike their name suggests, are not cliched and formularized--yet the words their music calls to mind for me are lifeless and overused in the context of rock description: shred, rip, lacerate, tear. Shred seems most appropriate, but forget Kerrang! associations and imagine a different sound for shredding. That popping sound you hear is the rupturing caused by their unbelievably loud drummer. And when things get fast and Dan DeVriend starts screaming and the guitar offers up the holy scouring, we are fortunate to bear witness to the most that anything can "rock" in this day and age. The "New" Terror Class are centered around Jamie Stillman (ex-Harriet the Spy and current Party of Helicopters) and as indisputable evidence of his taste, he's a Made For TV Movie fan. SS

JONNY X & THE GROADIES' FIVE-YEAR ANNIVERSARY CHILI COOKOFF, THRONES, UNSOUNDS, XIU XIU

(6616 NE MLK) You thought that a communal chili cook-off was the last thing in America worth preserving, but check this shit out! Jonny X & the Groadies (who are not only celebrating their fifth anniversary as a band, but also possibly releasing a new seven-inch today) will knock your socks off with their LOUD, FAST barrage of guitars, strobe lights, and velvety screaming. God, it's just like aromatherapy! Thrones, of course, is my own personal Jesus aka MASTER JOE PRESTON, playing extremely soothing one-man hardcore on his bass and singing prettily in his rich, brownie baritone. The Unsounds are also loud (but, I assure you, will be within the City of Portland's--which, when abbreviated, spells C.O.P.--acceptable decibel limit) and sometimes wear bunny outfits. Happy Anniversary, JX&tG! JS


GOING TO SEATTLE?

Thurs 6/28: Nels Cline (I-Spy); Uz Jsme Doma (Crocodile)

Fri 6/29: Built to Spill (Showbox)

Sat 6/30: Unwound, The Ex (Graceland)

Wed 7/4: The Faint, Pleasure Forever (Paradox)

For more info, visit

www.thestranger.com

New Releases 7/3: Autoliner, Banco de Gaia, Beta Band, Cradle of Filth, Gaffer, HiM, James, Marine Girls, N.E.R.D, Photon Band, Prefuse 73, Mark Robinson, Mick Ronson, Saves the Day, Stretch Armstrong, Timbaland & Magoo, Tindersticks