THURSDAY 6/27

GROWING, PANAMA, THEE SWAMP, THRONES
(Blackbird) In the movie Hannibal, there's this famous scene (SPOILER ALERT!) where Hannibal Lecter slices off the top of this dude's skull and just lets him hang out, doped up on morphine and talking while his brain is exposed and dripping blood. If you think that sounds grody, then take some eye patches with you to the Growing show, because the guitar duo has been known to flash slides of honest-to-god dead people and their "abrasions" during their set. Musically, though, it fits; Growing plays extraordinarily loud power-ambiance, like being slowly driven over by a street cleaner. Their sound waves may cause hemorrhaging, but you'll reach a contradictorily meditative state before the blood starts leaking. Panama, some Olympian ladies, shall play interesting, hacked-apart electro that is inappropriate for dancing, unless you are one of those performance artist types--or interpretive dancers, in which case, I love you eternally. Thrones, you know. JULIANNE SHEPHERD

THE WALKMEN, 764-HERO, ARLO
(Berbati's) See Music pg 17

CANDIRIA, DIECAST, UNEARTHED
(Meow Meow) It's nice to see Candiria finally headlining their own tour. They've certainly earned the position, having endured their share of heckling and confused looks over the last few years while opening for more straight-ahead hardcore and death-metal bands, whose fans don't always know what to make of the Brooklyn quintet. Together since the mid 1990s, Candiria have worked long and hard at developing their peculiar brand of jazz-infused, math-damaged heaviness. Awkward moments still creep up here and there in their music--after all, going from Mobb Deep-style hiphop to trumpet-laced, jazz-fusion interludes, to Sepultura-grade heaviness in the space of five minutes is no easy feat--but when they're on, Candiria are an unstoppable rhythm machine, causing audiences to scratch their chins and bang their heads at the same time. WILLIAM YORK


FRIDAY 6/28

FRANK JORDAN
(Music Millennium, 5 pm) Though the singer of Sacramento's Frank Jordan is a little heavy-handed on the vibrato--like Jeff Buckley, but with doilies--the trio is a very solid rock band with intriguing melodies, great drumming, and, of course, maximum hookage. On their latest release, Enemies, they stay away from the wafting stench of the pop junkyard by utilizing subtle tactics, such as complex bass melodies, a smattering of guitar distortion, or weirdo drum fills. They can even save jazz-mad reverb and Billy Joel-style vocal melodies from the cheese pile somehow. Perhaps it is their incredible drummer and post-punk edge--or maybe, like yellow eye shadow, pleated pants, and Steely Dan, Billy Joel is just coming back into vogue. Either way, Frank Jordan is a talented band you'll want to listen to, rather than use as background music while you drink yourself into a stupid oblivion. JS

FUCKING CHAMPS, PLEASEEASAUR, NEIL HAMBURGER, DRUNK HORSE
(Blackbird) "Vangelis Again." Get it? "Chariots of Fire's composer and "Jealous Again"? The Fucking Champs have a +18 Puns in Song Titles, which would enable them to completely obliterate any non-ironic metal band with less than an armor class of -2. That's quite a THACO! If one adds in their +6 Metal Hair and Tim Green's Indie Cred Modifier of +14, The Fucking Champs have uncharted HP (Hit Points) and the honorable title of Indie Metal/Math Rock Master Sorcerers. I won't even go into their +13 to Shred and their Special Reflex Saving Throw (Ability to Stop Songs On a Dime). Including the brilliant Pleaseeasaur, the ribald stand-up of Neil Hamburger and, Art Nerds in crime, Drunk Horse. KATE MERCIER

THE HIGH VIOLETS, BELLA FAYES, VISQUEEN
(Dante's) Visqueen is the project of ex-Fastbacks' Kim Warnick and vocalist/guitarist Rachel Flotard, and is said to be as harmonically screamy, sugary, and all-around fun as any great power-pop band with super vocalists who sound like they've been smoking for 800 years. JS

THE GOSSIP, MONITOR BATS, GET HUSTLE, CHROMATICS, YOUNG PEOPLE
(Meow Meow) See Music pg 17

JIM ROSE CIRCUS SIDESHOW, PURPLEOID
(Roseland) There are certain things from the '90s that I never want to see again--such as cigars, flannel, and Ellen Degeneres. However, I never ever get tired of the Jim Rose Circus Sideshow. Even though this travelling freak act has been around since 1992, it's hard to grow bored by a man who lifts and swings cinder blocks attached to his nipples and "John Thomas." And while wrestling may be boring, Mexican transvestite wrestlers are definitely not. Neither are sword swallowers, light bulb eaters, or anybody by the names of "The Idiot Brothers," "Bebe the Beautiful," or "Rubberboy." However, an unfortunate side effect of this remarkably entertaining and wonderfully gross show is that nothing else will ever be as entertaining again. I should know. I've been bored for 10 years. WM. STEVEN HUMPHREY


SATURDAY 6/29

A NAT HEMA'S LAST SHOW EVER, THE BRAND (ANOTHER PLIGHT OF MEDIC'S...) POS, COMPOMICRO-DEXALL, THE ABSTRACTIONS
(Jasmine Tree) James Boring of the experimental Portland staple A Nat Hema is moving to Hollywood, therefore this will be their last show. The other bands are from San Francisco, and intellectualize their type of music by saying things such as, "The project in sound balances a fine line between harsh noise, 20th/21st Century experimental exploration, heavy psychedelia, opera, and modern electronic music--technically siphoning the natural unpredictable qualities of the voice as a source and trigger for far more unworldly electronic sounds." Even though that is an annoying thing to say about your own music, Compomicro-Dexall/The Brand do make an interesting guillotine of noise, silence, uncomfortable chaos, random melody and pulsating tones that seem to implode. JS

GOLDIE, MC RAGE, DOC SCOTT
(Roseland) Goldie and Tricky have long been rivals, which is cool because I love an old school rivalry. Even though I think Tricky is better, Goldie has the more frantic drum 'n' bass beats that are slick and stylized rather than hippie, and way better for dancing. Two interesting facts about Goldie: he was briefly engaged to hottie Bjork, and he was a custom gold-teeth salesman before he became a hotshot producer, and that's why he has such nice gold teeth. KATIE SHIMER

31KNOTS, CURTAINS, TINY BIRD MOUTHS, ANDY CIGARETTES
(Fast Forward) Branching from the brilliance of Deerhoof's Chris Cohen (guitar) and Greg Saunier (keyboards), Curtains make music that's close to the forefront of your brain. Dribbling out playfully disjointed melodies, the Curtains' live and electronic music (which also includes drum machinist Trevor Shimizu, who replaces live drummer Jamie Peterson) is the simplest, most weirdly complex, instrumentally cartoonish block of improv-sounding harmonies you can imagine. If spelled out visually, their music would probably look like the video game Tetris. They're great musicians with a totally pure, childlike vision, making music that is both fun and utterly confusing. With local madman Andy Cigarettes, who does this screaming karaoke-type thing with an absurdly enticing stage presence/dance moves. JS

STEVE ROACH, PAUL ELLIS
(Aladdin) Steve Roach (not Steve Reich) has been composing with electronics since the '70s, defining the precursor of what we now know as ambient/tribal/trance, and releasing like 85,000 albums of nature-influenced music made by electronics. This is wonderful, and hopefully they'll be showing an IMAX film or something at his show, because without visuals or maybe a bottle of Robitussin, it is extraordinarily hard to stay awake while listening to the slowly graded increase of ambience. JS

WAYNE KRAMER, THE HUNCHES, MOTHER SUPERIOR, THE SPITFIRES
(Satyricon) There's not a whole lot I can say about Wayne Kramer (ex-MC5), except for the fact that he should have quit a long time ago. I witnessed a very disappointing show a few years back in Las Vegas and I've found his solo albums to be less than impressive. Those of you looking for the blistering performance that he used to deliver in the MC5 should look elsewhere. On the other hand, Portland's Hunches will be the band firing up the crowd with their ferociously noisy take on the rock 'n' roll sound that dominated the underground scene of the early to late '70s, and The Spitfires show us that even in their homeland of Canada rock 'n' roll still thrives. JOEL JETT

DOLLY VARDEN, JESSE SYKES & THE SWEET HEREAFTER, THE ASHTRAY HEARTS, WINIFRED E. EYE
(Blackbird) Witness the pairing of alt-country vocalist Jesse Sykes and alt-country guitarist Phil Wandscher mutate into Jesse Sykes and the Sweet Hereafter. Wandscher recently walked away from the crash-and-burn of Whiskeytown, where his gentle and purposeful guitar playing molded the sultry and pensive contours of that band's best songs. Chumming with the likes of Neko Case and bumming around the Seattle area, the band has been busy perfecting the manic depressive nuances of the Northwest. An improvement on each musician's previous band, they are sweet when they want to be and infectiously fun when they need to be. With the release of their first album only a few weeks ago, this tour is their honeymoon. And, so far, it seems like they can do nothing wrong. PHIL DOT BUSSE

DJ ZIGZAG CD RELEASE: PLATINUM SHIT BALLS
(Berbati's) Okay, say it with me now; "Platinum Shit Balls." Just roll this little phrase over in your mind a few times, and savor how simultaneously hilarious and bizarre a name it is for an album title. Then, just think about the kind of musician who would think of this title. Yep, he's real, folks. DJ Zigzag, and he's just as juvenile and entertaining as you might imagine. His music, however, is good; he spins "New World African Music," which can be anything, but focuses on reggae and dancehall, with samples from jazz and soul. If nothing else, I promise you won't be bored. KATIA DUNN

MOTHER MAY I, BETTY ALREADY, THE HAZMATS, THE GLEANERS, FOGGY NOTION, DIAMOND TUCK
(Lola's) Betty Already has been MIA for a while now, which is sad, because they're super fun to see--but really, it's happy because they're back. Frontwoman Kittie struts around the stage like a total rocker, wearing lavish outfits and hyper-color wigs and demanding attention with her powerful voice. Mother May I is also a band to see, with pre-teen members that are as big as their bass guitars and a singer who is dying to be the next Whitney Houston. KS


SUNDAY 6/30

BLACKBIRD ONE-YEAR ANNIVERSARY STARRING MADE FOR TV MOVIE, TURN ME LOOSE
(Blackbird) There is a rumor about the Blackbird that it is populated by a bunch of snooty hipsters, presumably started by people who have never been there. I am here to tell you that it's safe--you don't have to feel uncomfortable going there, because in actuality, the Blackbird is populated by dorks; the people who goes there is dorks, the people who works there is dorks, and the bands that plays there? Total dorks. In fact, I would be hard-pressed to remember a time I went to the Blackbird when I wasn't in a conversation with fellow socially awkward people dropping nerd-knowledge about what members of Wolf Eyes are in Violent Ramp, or exactly what year Wire started sucking, or whether Le Tigre's "Hot Topic" is the greatest feminist wake-up call of our generation. The club is Dork City. At any rate, help the "Black Hole" ("because once you get there, it's impossible to escape") celebrate its one-year anniversary with the super bands Made for TV Movie and Turn Me Loose. JS


MONDAY 7/1

THE CURTAINS
(Red & Black) See Saturday Listing.


TUESDAY 7/2

RECLINERLAND CD RELEASE PARTY, SUPER XX MAN, COLIN MELOY, JEFF LONDON
(Blackbird) Reclinerland is one of those glamorous artists who's always transitioning from New York to Portland, and writing me emails like, "I'm just about to leave Brooklyn, I'll call you when I get into Portland." [WTF? He writes that line to me, too! -arts ed.] Personally, I think his innovative, soft acoustic/solo act is much more appropriate for Portland than Brooklyn; if you can count on one thing about Portland music taste, it's a love for anything tortured. Recliner is certainly tortured. Hear selections from his new CD tonight. KATIA DUNN

PRETTY GIRLS MAKE GRAVES, THE BLOOD BROTHERS, FIT & THE TANTRUMS
(Meow Meow) There is this type of therapy called "Primal Scream," in which you're just supposed to let loose and wail to somehow release stress/get in touch with what makes you so fucked up. (I know this because Christina Ricci's dad is one of these therapists and I read about it, not because I practice it, OKAY?) The Blood Brothers, a group of punk youths who have more pent-up energy than a gaggle of pubescent male soccer players, probably have no hang-ups or emotional baggage at all, due to the amount of frenzied screaming they employ. Many love their tight, crazy, fast-forward hardcore, and many hate it (there is a definite posture involved, as stage presence goes), but you cannot deny the Blood Brothers are amazing to watch, if only for sheer output of energy and tension. JS

THE WAXWINGS, THE MINDERS, THE MAYFLIES, UHF
(Berbati's) Though they hail from Detroit, the Waxwings play music so sunny, you can almost smell the vintage citrus crispness of Sea & Ski tan lotion. (Doesn't the mere mention of that lovely olfactory memory bring a shiver to your is-you-or-is-you-ain't-my-summer frustrated heart?) Guitars and tambourines jangle, a Farfisa hoots away, and just try not to stop and smell the harmonies on Shadows of the Waxwings, out just now on Bobsled Records. This is the show to see for any old reason, any old reason at all. Think you'll hate it and I promise you won't. Think you'll love it and yes, goddammit, you surely will. KATHLEEN WILSON


WEDNESDAY 7/3

MOMUS, PHIILIP, THE GONGS, RROLAND, SUPER MADRIGAL BROTHERS
(Blackbird) For some time, New York-via-Scotland act, Momus (a.k.a. Nick Currie), has taken up residence in the stranger byways of electronic music, notably on the wonderfully creepy Philosophy of Momus. Recently he's started a new label, American Patchwork, featuring artists working in a similar electro-folky vein. Particularly remarkable are the Gongs, a quartet whose music is made through amplified, polytonal gongs and an array of instruments assembled from driftwood and electronic components. The result is to folk what dub is to reggae: folk with its insides emptied out, leaving behind only a tenuous, electronic shell. It's like a soundtrack for post-urban locales, suggestive of nothing so much as strip malls, vacant lots, and old hubcaps abandoned on a beach. COLIN BOOY

THE JIMMIES, DIRTBIKE ANNIE, THE EXPLODING HEARTS
(Satyricon) The Exploding Hearts have that early pop rock 'n'roll sound down so well, you could swear it was 1980 all over again. Their songs are filled with the same catchy harmonies and guitars that made bands such as the Plimsouls, Pointed Sticks, and the Romantics so memorable. Those of you who crave this sound will want to see this band at least once. New York's Dirt Bike Annie will also be giving the kids a big injection of the sugar coated pop punk. JJ


GOING TO SEATTLE?

Thurs 6/27: Fuckin Champs, Juanitas (Graceland); Olympia Experimental Music Festival (Olympia)

Fri 6/28: Aceyalone, Bus Driver, DJ Drez (I-Spy)

For more info, visit

www.thestranger.com

New Releases July 2: Aspects of Physics, Danielson Famile, Dryft, Flip-Tops, Jaheim, Morella's Forest, Proem