THURSDAY NOVEMBER 01

KONK PACK

(The Old Church) Konk Pack is a hardcore, free-improvising trio from Europe. The best known of the bunch is Tim Hodgkinson, a co-founder with Fred Frith of the fabled 1970s avant-rock band Henry Cow, a group that made Yes, Pink Floyd, ELP, and other now-forgotten prog-rock coevals (Gentle Giant, egg, and Kansas) sound as hip as Brahms. Hodgkinson, an associate of the legendary Romanian composer Iancu Dumitrescu, plays clarinet and "table-top" guitar, which means he stuffs radios, wires, rods, and who knows what else between the strings. Joining Hodgkinson is German keyboardist Thomas Lehn on analog synthesizers, and percussionist Roger Turner, a veteran of the same U.K. Canterbury scene that spawned the Soft Machine. Despite the ominous name, Konk Pack won't just curl the paint on the walls; expect lyrical moments and poetic turbulence, too. CHRISTOPHER DeLAURENTI

THE BETA BAND

(B Complex) Corporate indie is the new scourge of the British music scene: guitar bands that come ready-formed, as if to specific consumer designs, bursting into the charts with all the grace of Noel Gallagher skydiving, the image and music specifically tailored to recall certain eras and genres, and never too challenging. Enter a trio of surprising, sometimes strange Edinburgh boys (later expanded to a quartet) who like to shave in meadows and torment bubbles with razors. The Beta Band makes films, samples owls, and is turned on by King Tubby's dub and Barry White's deep schmooze--It is no wonder the bedsit boys and English music press think they have a revolution on their hands. So what can you expect to experience from the Beta Band live? Everything including the kitchen sink, basically: human beat boxes, homemade films, costumes, homemade instruments, and a party atmosphere. EVERETT TRUE

NUDGE, TAKAGI MAKATSU, GLOMM, METATRON

(Blackbird) See Music pg 13

...AND YOU WILL KNOW US BY THE TRAIL OF DEAD, ATTACK FORMATION, COBRA HIGH

(Meow Meow) The hollow, driving, angry rock sound of ...And You Will Know Us is definitely worth checking out. Their craftsmanship is tight and their booming sound explosions could fill the Gorge Amphitheater, much less the Meow Meow. And now that they're on Interscope Records, next time, they might actually play there, so see 'em while you can. KATIE SHIMER


FRIDAY NOVEMBER 02

KISSING BOOK, URBAN LEGENDS, DUSTY RESKE

(Red & Black) See Music pg 13

10¢ (THE DIMES), THE CULOTTES DOUBLE CD RELEASE; SHEMO, TAMI HART COMPLEX

(Reed College Student Union) I can't decide which CD of the double-bound, letter-pressed release I like better--10¢ or The Culottes--I love them both so much, I just keep alternating listening to them over and over. The Culottes is a loose, charming group of acoustic pop songs featuring Jeremy Romagna's chopsticked drums, the sighing, autumnal voice of Iris Porter, and keyboards by Liza Stillhard. Liza's in 10¢, too--she plays keyboards and sings in a beautifully precise voice that's full of clarity. 10¢, which also features drums, bass, and guitar, are more about upbeat pop, and their record reflects a drama similar to all the really good mainstream '80s music, like T'Pau. But then, how can you not be dramatic, when you're singing lines like "If you don't love me/ why aren't your eyes dry?/I pull away and you leave the ground/I ask the sun to help me turn your plane around." The CD is as simple and sweet as leaves pressed in a book or old letters on crispy paper, and innocence can be so cool. JS

OPERATION MAKEOUT, THE SPINOFFS

(Meow Meow) Vancouver, BC's Operation Makeout gets points for having the grossest album cover of all time--a close-up of two red, sweaty tongues going for the deep kiss, that looks like it came from a medical book with close-ups of syphilis. Beyond that, they used to sound a little like Sleater-Kinney, but they had some lineup changes, and now they are going for the more driving, melodic punk action. The question is, are they going to make out? JS

THE PLANET THE, AVEO, VESPERTINES

(Blackbird) Yes, it's true. About six months ago, The Planet The lost a member and changed their name to "The Plan The" instead of "The Planet The." (Apparently, the lost member represented the "et.") As if that wasn't pretentious enough, now they've decided to bring back the et. It's too bad their music is so compulsively, awesomely prog rock. (If they had any more time changes, they'd be a typewriter.) Otherwise, I'd have to suggest a boycott of The Plan(et) The. Aveo is also really, really good. KATIA DUNN

NO. 13 BABY, NO. 2, RUSTON MIRE

(Berbati's) Possibly one of the most widely lamented band breakups of the twentieth century was that of the Pixies. For one perfect moment in history, they were the fascinating promise of what "alternative" music could be, and was for awhile, until it became the intolerable sludge that I presume it still is since I stopped listening to it, years ago. Even though both Frank Black and Kim Deal went off in some interesting directions, the mourning continues and the wounds have not healed. Like a Morningstar not-dog, No. 13 Baby has the same shape and texture, and leaves a similar taste in your mouth. There's no substitute for the meat, but you might find yourself craving the imposter for its own special flavor. MARJORIE SKINNER

SCOTT AMENDOLA BAND

(St. John's) When I ask myself the question, "Which musicians have managed to maintain their respectability through the years, still doing really innovative shit in the name of art past their musical 'primes'?" Nels Cline, who plays guitar in the Scott Amendola band, is one of the only non-exclusively jazz people I can ever come up with. He's a brilliant virtuoso, and because his talent has such depth, I doubt he'll ever be washed up. He could be playing with Bing motherfucking Crosby, or Madonna or somebody, and I would still recommend this show. JS

DANIEL MENCHE, SORIAH, NEQUAQUAM VACUUM, DAVID MIRANDA

(Medicine Hat) Like the dark, weightless goth stuff? I liken Daniel Menche's minimalist music to the slow roasting of the brain at Burning Man, percussion-heavy, Asian-influenced sound explosions inspired by extreme heat, mirages, dehydration, and the smack of sand on your face. KS

NICE NICE, GROWING, MONITOR BATS

(Ground Kontrol) Growing might sound unfamiliar to you, until you hear that they are the band formerly known as Black Man White Man Dead Man, and they are loud as fuck! Monitor Bats are a group of scuff-em-up situationists, who compose their agitated noise precisely enough to knock your inner ear to the floor. Nice Nice abandon composition altogether, with drums, guitars, and a Boomerang pedal that turns their improv into a dubby, funky, rhythm-based enchantment. JS

KITTIE, DRY KILL LOGIC, ILL NINO, MIND WAR SYMPHONY

(B Complex) Nearly every time the girls in Kittie are in front of a camera or a microphone, they take great pains to explain that their gender doesn't hamper the band's ability to ROCK HARD. Well, they're right; their gender is irrelevant. And who the fuck cares? They do just as good a job with bottom-heavy, one-dimensional, aggro-metal sludge as their equally boring counterparts in Korn or Slipknot. That said, if you find that sub-genre of metal enjoyable, you'll probably love Kittie. The band has done little else but tour since the release of its debut in 1999, sharing arena stages with appropriate mentors like Pantera and Fear Factory, so Kittie's live presentation is rarely sloppy. Just don't try to convince me that its members are breaking any barriers, stylistically or politically. HANNAH LEVIN


SATURDAY NOVEMBER 03

TO ELECTRICITY: PROEM, SOLENOID, LOGIC PROBE, GLOMM & N-GRAVA, JERRY ABSTRACT, HUMAN V

(Reed College Student Union) The website of Mimesis Productions states a mission of being "Dedicated to the creation of quality IDM events in the Portland area." Well, that pretty much sums it up. Austin's Proem started out making the nibbly, minimal stuff, but has more recently has a sound that's evolving into a dense sample soup. Solenoid is the quintessential local boy making good: records on lots of labels far and near, all to critical acclaim. He plays a drum-pad live, and with skill. With no headliner carrying near the name recognition of a Warp act, this night shows just how much favor IDM now carries in P-town. ELLIOTT ADAMS

ATOMBOMBPOCKETKNIFE, SHARKS KEEP MOVING, THE DRONE EFFECT

(Meow Meow) Every once in awhile, you miss the days when a band could play what we used to refer to as "crunchy guitars" without sounding like a pathetic ripoff of something out of Chapel Hill/NYC, 1990. Indierock is boring, and indierock is dead. But god save the ABPK, because Atombombpocketknife channels their thoroughly modern lethargy into scrappy guitars, warm bass, pebbly vocals, distortion used tastefully and not as a crutch. Remember when Daydream Nation came out, and it was the best album you ever heard? Well, the ABPK will stir some of that old-school nostalgia, without making you nauseous. Whooee! You never knew how boring distortion had gotten, until you heard ABPK freshen that shit up. JS


SUNDAY NOVEMBER 04

BOUNCING SOULS, FLOGGING MOLLY, ONE MAN ARMY, MADCAP

(Crystal) Punk rock has become a permeating monstrosity of sub-genrefication. The Bouncing Souls dropped from the "fun" branch of the punk tree, the one that's simultaneously silly, innocent, dirty, and sincere. Their shows are a catharsis for that Manic Panicked kid hopping around in beat-up Vans that maybe you once were, or are. Flogging Molly is a bit more pained. Through a heavy Celtic shroud, it is again proven that while alcoholic manic-depression is a long, teary trail through hell, it can also produce some touching rock songs! And thus, the ancestral tradition of patrons gleaning joy out of the artist's suffering continues. Or hey, screw the inner child/pop-psychology twittering, guzzle the Guinness, and fuck shit up. Dude. MS


MONDAY NOVEMBER 05

CAVE IN, ICARUS LINE

(Meow Meow) There is no denying how talented the members of Cave In are. But I can't stand Jupiter, the band's most recent album, because it's overproduced and melodramatic. The live show is energetic, and the members of this once-hardcore group of Bostonians can certainly play their instruments. So if you like your rock fraught and inordinately angstful, check out this show. I'm guessing that the kids are going to love it, and that's all that really matters, isn't it? JEFF DeROCHE


TUESDAY NOVEMBER 06

STATESIDE, DURA DELINQUENT, SMALL CRAFT ADVISORY, THE LIARS

(Ash Street) NYC's The Liars are in the post-punk yet danceable camp although, as with contemporaries such as Q and Not U, nothing about them seems overtly contrived, thank god. That is why I can look past their lead singer's moustache and place their new record, they threw us all in a trench and stuck a monument on top (Gern Blandsten), in one of my current top ten. Full of ass-shakers whose titles ("Nothing is ever lost or can be lost my science friend," "We Live NE of Compton") display a wittiness that's carried over into their lyrics, they blend their dance beats with sweatband samples and vocals spilling with angry desperation. Incidentally, this night is one in a series of monthly shows sponsored by KPSU (1450 AM), which is one of my favorite radio stations ever. JS

SONGS THE SPACEMEN TAUGHT US STARRING SONIC BOOM, THE SENSUALISTS

(Berbati's) I was told this is a secret... BUT I gots a BIG assed mouth... and I can't seem to keep NUTHIN' inside... much less no "secrets!" Right, so... there's a Spacemen 3 "tribute" band, featuring ex-Spacemembers, Pete "Sonic Boom" Kember and Will "no cool nickname" Carruthers, who, with a handfulla other sike-minders, assembled for a one off US tour. Cool... It's almost a complete S3, and cooler indeed as S3 never toured the states before. However, years later... will this incarnation be GOOD?? Why not? Merrily they'll drone along, drone along, drone along the S3's hits... and that's all we need. Oh, if you ain't took acid since the 3 split... you best get to lookin'! MIKE NIPPER

STEREO TOTAL, MOMUS

(Meow Meow) Momus' latest project is called Folktronic, in which he takes themes--both musical and lyrical--from traditional folk music and writes them out in electronica. This will please his cultish audience, no doubt, as it situates itself between something Weird Al would do and a project that examines musical history. But I resist the value of the project, because it doesn't take electronica seriously enough to realize that certain forms of it (house and techno in particular) are already folk music. True to the form of traditional folk music, electronica is strictly designed for dancing, and to escalate a crowd's energy, so much so that when you listen to a CD, it seems that the music is distant from it's true purpose: to build communities through concerts. Like folk music, the communities that gravitate toward electronica are the tightest and friendliest musical communities out there. So how valuable is it to ask "will electronica be the folk music of the future" when it already is? BRIAN GOEDDE


WEDNESDAY NOVEMBER 07

THE COUP, CASUAL, MR. BRADY, MOKA ONLY

(B Complex) Badass hiphop insurrectionists The Coup recently garnered themselves a little more fame, because the original cover of their new album, Party Music (which was designed in May 2001) featured a photo of Boots Riley and DJ Pam with remote controls blowing up the World Trade Center. Obviously, many, many people had freakouts; even the Mercury got an email from some McCarthy-era kook saying they should be arrested because Boots is a communist (which was promptly delivered to my trash bin without incident). And, even more obviously, the original design was symbolic of destroying the imperialistic capitalism that the WTC represented--plain old class war. But Boots proved himself to be badderasser than we ever thought, by releasing an unflinching public statement and including the following quote: "Fuck the American flag. It stands for oppression, exploitation, slavery, and murder. If you're down with hiphop, don't wave one. No one will be admitted to a Coup show wearing red, white, and blue together." The Coup is, now more than ever before, the indisputable leader in socially relevant hiphop--and supposedly, the new record (out later this month, sans original cover) is bumpin! Feel this love. JS



GOING TO SEATTLE?

Tues 11/6: Elizabeth Elmore, Captain Vs. Crew (Crocodile); The Coup (I-Spy); Spiritualized (Showbox)

Wed 11/7: Sonic Boom (Graceland); Ursula Rucker (I-Spy)

For more info, visit www.thestranger.com

New Releases Nov. 6: Avalanches, Clairvoyants, Flanger, Gwar, Hood*, La Makita Soma, Rage Against the Machine, They Might Be Giants, Tilt * = may actually turn out okay