THURSDAY 3/28

UNWOUND, LACHRYMATOR, NICE NICE

(Blackbird, 3728 NE Sandy) Unwound's third-to-last show--but show up early to see Lachrymator and one of Portland's most brilliant yet confoundingly corked-on secret bands: Nice Nice. Improvising with guitar, drums, and more pedals than a Baltimore crack whore, Nice Nice puts the shake in the ass with a mix of dub, dance, humping guitar smackage, and gold-toothed, progressive, invert beats. They're danceable and faint-worthy, equally talented and soaked in genius, and if your heart doesn't explode while you watch them, please check your pulse, cause Nice Nice is going to blow the fuck up. JULIANNE SHEPHERD See Music pg 15

CLEM SNIDE, THE BOYS FROM IPANEMA

(Berbati's, 231 SW Ankeny) You know that show, Ed? It's Clem Snide's song which is the theme song. You might otherwise have heard of them when they were from Boston, in the early '90s. The lead dude, Eef Barzelay, split with the rest of the band sometime in the mid-'90s and then recreated Clem more recently from NY. They're kind of twangy pop, very sweet but not totally saccharin and hello kitty and shit. In fact, they almost seem to have a little folk mixed in. They're good. KATIA DUNN


FRIDAY 3/29

HOOD, cLOUDDEAD, PROJECT PERFECT

(Blackbird) cLOUDDEAD: is it trip-hop? Avant-hiphop? Andy Kaufman druggie fuck-core? Who the hell cares, cause you haven't heard anything like it. Members of Oakland's Anticon, Dose One, why?, and Odd Nosdam bring the freaks (in more ways than one) on their own--but put them together, and you have a brain-slugging concoction of nostrilly lyrics and mushy samples that rival Percoset in feel-good factor, if you know what I mean. It's compelling and groundbreaking and artful, etc., but also totally funny--they give shout-outs to dead presidents, for chrissakes. (Calvin Coolidge is wicked down with the underground, you know.) Originally releasing a series of 10-inch records and a Peel Session, cLOUDDEAD has got some new shit coming soon. In the meantime, Odd Nosdam and why? are about to release a record under the name Reaching Quiet, that features more of the same--googly-eyed, fake commercial skits, raps that roll out like Humpty Dumpty jingles, and lo-fi samples spliced together, old-school, from an eight-track. Like, amazing. JS See Music pg 15

JUHA

(Reed College, 3203 SE Woodstock) Juha is... (drumroll please) queer Palestinian hiphop from Hawaii. Straight up. Their show includes raps, Middle Eastern-flavored singing, and spoken-word skits about the absurdities of modern life. I saw them last week at a basement party in Seattle, and while a few songs were less than great, a lot of the songs rocked the party right. People are always chewing their fingernails speculating on the state of hiphop; I don't so much worry as long as groups like Juha "just don't give a fuck" (a central tenet of vital hiphop) and thrive on the fringe of both gay and hiphop cultures. BRIAN GOEDDE

PERPETUATING RESPONSE

(Polyp and Fury, 3974 N Mississippi #1) Let the 2 Gyrlz Performative Arts crack your mind open with "Perpetuating Response," where music melds with art and performance. Rachael Allen's print media explores how the public pieces together the fragments of world events such as 9/11, Soriah engages the music of ritual theatre, and Pecos B. performs text. Look to Nick Fury, Rudement, Pedro, and MSNGR for illbient, media mixing, and turntablism; trip on TOI's video installation and peruse the work of other local visual artists. Sure beats another predictable night of indie rawk! TIFFANY LEE BROWN

NO. 13 BABY

(Berbati's) With Black Francis/Frank Black's most recent music being so crappy and all, we'd all rather listen to the Pixies anyway. And since we can't get to the real thing, you might as well go listen to this Pixies cover band, who do a damn fine job paying homage to the music we all worshipped. KD

SARAH SHANNON, SELDOM, LAUREL CANYON

(Meow Meow, 527 SE Pine) Formerly the starry-eyed chanteuse in Sub Pop cutesters Velocity Girl (pretty much the reigning Cute Band of all Cute Band Alerts throughout the early '90s), Sarah Shannon is back, she's solo, and she's been listening to Burt Bacharach. Her newer music diverges from the fuzzy guitar pop of VG so much that the only trace it ever happened is the sound of her clear, ringing soprano--written mostly with her partner, Blake Westcott, Sarah sings piano bar laments and head-bopping, straight pop about love and its travails. Though it may disappoint all but the most vehemently die-hard Sarah Shannon fans (unless you've grown up and matured in the same way she has), it will probably attract a cache of new listeners--older, more well-off folks whose desire to rock has been replaced with the desire to procreate. But it's not bad--it's just very squeaky clean. JS


SATURDAY 3/30

RYE COALITION, 31KNOTS, BLOOD BROTHERS, REPLICATOR

(Blackbird) As a trouble-causer, I like to go around telling people that "I hate rock music." Of course, it's bullshit--I love the rock, I live for the rock--but that really pisses people off, and is therefore entertaining. But honestly, I thought I could do without classic rock revivalist music--until I saw the triumphant return of Rye Coalition last week in Michigan. Straight out of Jersey, Rye Coalition now consists of its original five members, and have dumped their affinity for any type of music BUT ROCK AND ROLL. Now, where bands like the Tight Bros rely far more on panache and stage presence than anything else, Rye Coalition just writes some good, rocking songs--great solos, chunky chords, energetic drumming--and good songwriting will always supercede shtick. This is not to say the Rye Coalition has no stage presence, however; they are quite engaging on stage. But most of all, they write rock and roll with the right amount of hooks and confidence that you can feel they mean it, rather than just trying to take their self-important, cynical, ironic joke to the limit. Honesty rules... even when they sing that icky song about the lady leaving her shoes on, I really believe they mean it (which is why it is icky). Blood Brothers, an ensemble of super-rocking wunderkind from Seattle, have been touted as either the great white hope for rock and roll, or the next At the Drive-In, depending on what suits you. And I'm the next Bette Midler, or the next Kelly from 90210. JS

ICANLICKANYSONOFABITCHINTHEHOUSE, SHUGGIE, WATSONVILLE PATIO, BRIAN BERG

(Fez, 316 SW 11th) Is there such a genre in music as "redneck western"? Icanlickanysonofabitchinthehouse's name says it all: A squawking and undisciplined harmonica, the same forceful bass line of Rev. Horton Heat, and determined lyrics about graveyards and rattlesnake bites. More redneck than country-western, there is not much that is melodious about Mike D's voice--raspy and scratchy. But then again, there is not much that is melodious or glad-handing about kicking a sonofabitch's ass. The band's louder songs grab the anger and chaos of a barroom brawl by the short hairs, but what sets them apart are their softer songs, shuffling ditties that sound like a lamenting good-for-nothing, slopping his worries into the bottom of a glass. Hard-hitting barroom music: just my style. PHIL DOT BUSSE

ROCK & ROLL SURPRISE NO. 3 STARRING BRIAN FOOTE

(Madame Butterfly, 425 SW Stark) Whatever growing pains Madame Butterfly has experienced have been nicely cushioned by their weekend DJ talent. Emphasizing music selection over beat-matching skills and the like (which are rather unnecessary when wasabi is burning a hole through your tongue), it's great to chance to hear DJs who aren't really DJs. Thankfully, most at the turntables have taken advantage of this and put down their favorite tunes, regardless of dancefloor relevance. Brian Foote, of Outward Music Company, will be treating you and yours to an assortment of new and yet-unreleased digital cacophonies that act as an excellent soundtrack to finishing off that last bit of vegetable tempura. ELLIOTT ADAMS

REO SPEEDWAGON, STYX

(Memorial Coliseum, 1 Winning Way) See Mercury Music Trivia Challenge pg 17

SEASON TO RISK, JUMBO'S KILLCRANE, WITCH MOUNTAIN, LEDBENDER

(Satyricon, 125 NW 6th) Mellow hardcore is refreshing, because you can still feed your hatred of humanity without getting your glasses knocked off, or a fling of some kid's nasty boy-sweat in your eye. Eww. Jumbo's Killcrane are creative and talented, have a full orchestral hardcore sound, tear it up speed-core style occasionally, and their vocalist sounds like a velociraptor. Season to Risk sort of hints in the right direction, with dominating distorted guitar and pained gothy vocals, but honestly, I'm not sure they know how to play their instruments very well, and their songs wander all around in a way that makes you squint and say "huh, hmm," or "hmpfh." KATIE SHIMER


SUNDAY 3/31

THE NEW YEAR, PEDRO THE LION, SEAWORTHY

(Berbati's) The Kadane brothers, who fronted Bedhead, have emerged with the New Year. On record, the New Year is a study in private wounds; if it is anything like Bedhead was, the live show will transform those quiet self-defeats into stunning slo-mo fireworks of self-destruction. Seaworthy is the new project by MACHA's Josh McKay, and he brought all those mysterious ambient sounds with him. Luckily, Dave Bazan of Pedro the Lion will provide the evening's solid ground, since he will be performing solo--although, come to think of it, Bazan is one of the Northwest's master practitioners of doubt and troubled faith. A more emotionally complex evening could scarcely be devised. EVAN SULT

THE LAWN, SCIFLYER, SCIENCE OF YABRA

(Blackbird) Wear kneepads, 'cause the Science of Yabra's gonna punch u in da gut. Agitated guitars and vocals that twitch and splay seismographically, fully ready to take you out with their hardcore/screamo-influenced, nervous power. Angry wails, fully built up with the frazzled drama of guitars, drums, bass--this type of shit doesn't get tighter or more energetic than SoY. JS

MONDAY 4/1

BONNIE PRINCE BILLY, RAINYWOOD, ENTRANCE, HOLY SONS

(Blackbird) While the ironic tidal wave overtook the '90s, Will Oldham and Palace Music was one of the few artists who stood their ground with sincere music (that sounded like country, of all things), and managed to entertain all the indie rockers who were otherwise listening to Pavement. This in itself is an amazing feat, but what's also amazing is that Will has managed to produce awesome music for the last 10 years. After and during Palace, he continued to record on Drag City, played around with artists like Smog and Slint, and has now come full circle to a solo act called Bonnie Prince Billy, which is as dark, depressing, and dripping with country twang as ever. As a side note, Oldham also had a short acting career, in which he played in John Sayles' Matewan, which just happens to be playing at the Northwest Film Center this week. KATIA DUNN

NEIL HALSTEAD, CORRINA REPP

(Aladdin, 3017 SE Milwaukie) The former band leader for shoegazers Slowdive and current frontman of Mojave 3, Neil Halstead turns each song into prayerfully picked sonnets of longing, desire, and damage control. Live, he mixes stripped-down Mojave 3 songs and selections from his solo debut album, Sleeping on Roads. The album features Halstead's gentle but not fragile voice and guitar with piano, organ, and glockenspiel daubs for accent. The translation of those songs in concert to their most elemental parts has been one of the most beautifully moving shows I've seen, all delivered with a shy shrug and a few words between songs. NATE LIPPENS


TUESDAY 4/2

GIANT SAND, CARISSA'S WIERD

(Crystal Ballroom, 1332 W. Burnside) Giant Sand's new record of covers, Cover Magazine, is not only aptly titled, it's damn good. I always thought lounged-out versions of heavy-metal classics would be a fabulous concept, and frontman Howe Gelb has done just that. Anyone that has the balls to take Black Sabbath's "Iron Man" and reconfigure it with piano and bongos gets my vote of confidence. That may be the most amusing selection on the disc, but new renderings of PJ Harvey's "Plants and Rags" and X's "Johnny Hit and Run Pauline" are strong as well, and will no doubt be compelling in a live setting. HANNAH LEVIN

TORSTEN MÜLLER

(Jasmine Tree, 401 SW Harrison, 8 pm) World-famous German jazz bassist Torsten Müller improvises for your delight tonight, along with helpers Rob Blakeslee on brass and Tim DuRoche (drums). JS

KIND OF LIKE SPITTING, HUTCH & KATHY, KISSING BOOK

(Meow Meow) Repeat the following like a mantra: Urban Legends, now Hutch & Kathy... Urban Legends, now Hutch & Kathy... Urban Legends, now Hutch & Kathy. Though the two members of Urban Legends were always called Hutch & Kathy, now they're actually called Hutch & Kathy, due to the unfortunate existence of an Orange County, nü-ska, high school band by the name of Suburban Legends. Though I truly believe Urban Legends deserve to keep the name, if only due to the fact that they're not nü-nothin', alas, Hutch & Kathy it is. They still play the same burningly happy/ bittersweet, grinny acoustic pop, including harmonica and great drumming/harmonies. It's Hutch & Kathy. Hutch & Kathy. Hutch... Kathyyyyyy... JS


WEDNESDAY 4/3

HOLY GHOST, SMALL CRAFT ADVISORY

(Blackbird) From Brooklyn, the Holy Ghost plays guitar-based indierock popping with neat hooks and lip-furled, "uh-uh" vocals. While it's neither the greatest music I've ever heard, nor the most innovative, on record they're a good band--straightforward, inoffensive, rocking. A good first date band, especially as a neutralizer, if you take said date to the Groadies show beforehand and they cannot handle it. JS

THE DISAPPEARER, JONNY X & THE GROADIES, SCIENCE OF YABRA, GETGETGO

(Nicole's, NE 13th & Fremont, 7 pm) Johnny X & the Groadies evoke a powerful feeling--demonic, uncontrollable, and sometimes scary. It's insane, screaming, metal hardcore, but hey, they also include melody. They almost always play in basements, although I really think they could benefit from a room where people can spread out and purge their inner demons, plus they're certainly skilled enough to dazzle a plentiful, hard-and-heavy crowd. KS

SPIRITUALIZED, BLACK REBEL MOTORCYCLE CLUB

(Roseland, NW 6th & Burnside) For some people, the promise of a three-hour live set is a nightmare. Many of us (the spoiled) who attend shows on a regular, weekly basis have better things to do than collect varicose veins as we stand at rapt attention while a band plays its entire new album and most of its back catalog. Others thrill to the thought of hearing all that music in one sitting. As a member of the former legion, I was stunned when I realized, two hours into it, that I was still enthralled with Spiritualzed's experimental, admittedly wanky set. I'm not saying I stuck around for the final hour, but I could have.... Black Rebel Motorcycle Club, however, never plays long enough, and tonight's lineup will certainly cast the club's decadent interiors in a lovely wash of fog machines working overtime. KATHLEEN WILSON


GOING TO SEATTLE?

Fri 3/29: Unwound (Theater Off Jackson); Black Rob, G-Dep (Catwalk)
Sat 3/30: E4, X-Ecutioners, Custon (Stadium Exhibition Center); Hood, cLOUDDEAD (Crocodile)

For more info, visit
www.thestranger.com


New Releases April 2: Anti-Pop Consortium*, Cornershop, Ill Ease, My Morning Jacket/Songs: Ohia*, Stew
* = possibly not crap-tastic