THURSDAY 1/9

PEP LOVE & DJ DOMINO, ORGANICS, THUNDERHUT, THE REBELZ, SICK MEDIKS
(Fez, 316 SW 11th)
From Oakland's Hieroglyphics crew, Pep Love collaborated with DJ Domino on his first solo record, last year's introspective and mildly psychedelic Ascension. While Pep has a really easy, mellow, well-enunciated West Coast flow on which the album was able to ride, the production was pretty tight, too, with beats that sounded cut 'cause they were isolated in the mix, and kinda mystical samples (I think maybe the keyb setting was on "Twinkle Echo" or "Crystal Fantasy" for more than one track). The magical melodies amplified Pep's message, which was all about rising above (hence "ascension"), being positive, having high self-esteem, and being your own best self--plus a little name-dropping of the "afterlife" here and there. But don't expect him to like, break Eucharist or anything--Pep "gets it on like Huey P. Newton." Thunderhut, a super-young crew also from the Bay Area, has extremely sick rhyming styles that both betray their ages and transcend them. JULIANNE SHEPHERD

THE PLOT TO BLOW UP THE EIFFEL TOWER
(1036 N. Shaver)
It's not saying a whole lot to be a punk band from San Diego, but to be a San Diego punk band straight outta 1994 means a whole lot to music fans worldwide. For a wonderful, yet brief time, San Diego had the sexiest bands on the planet--full of style, sass, and seething aggressive music that alienated them from the permanent sunshine of that tourist-friendly Naval town they called home. While The Plot to Blow Up the Eiffel Tower do borrow from that time period, this San Diego quartet make things far more interesting by infusing jazz rhythms and the occasional horn blast. Throw in the fact that their live show is a brilliant chaotic mess of flailing limbs and instruments, and you have one of best bands around, period. EZRA ACE CARAEFF

YOUNG PEOPLE, THE FORMLESS, GET HUSTLE
(Disjecta, 116 NE Russell)
Young People makes a wonderful bouquet of earnest, clear-as-the-sea vocals, basement-minimal drumming, and clanky, driven guitars. Artistic in their melding of gorgeous, gospel-hymn melodies with a highly becoming, rusty-bathtub atmosphere of sound, my love for the Los Angeles trio (which features Janet Pants Dans Theeatre's Katie Eastburn, Pink & Brown/Tarentel/ Lumen's Jeff Rosenberg, and Jarrett Silberman, formerly of Uphill Gardeners and--yes--Get Hustle) burns with the voltage of a high-wattage incandescent lightbulb. After months of constant touring, they're on another mini-jaunt, this one to record their second record warm them up for their next tour accompanying the infinitely popular and yet still mind-blowing New York band Liars. Young People's first record, the self-titled one on 5 Rue Christine, is a gem, and their new songs glisten with even prettier, sparser sentiment. JS

THE SUPERBEES, LAZY COWGIRLS, HAZMATS, OBLIVION SEEKERS
(Ash Street, 225 SW Ash)
Loud, brash, and oozing that Detroit garage "soul-uality," L.A.'s SuperBees are kind of a California counterpart to the rock 'n' rollin' Midnight Thunder Express. Frontman Dave James yowls like Wile E. Coyote getting flamed by the roadrunner, but his lyrical attitude is much more the man who'll leave you flat on your ass before you even had the chance to get his number. JENNIFER MAERZ

CREEPER LAGOON, AUDIO LEARNING CENTER, MINETHIRTYSEVEN
(Blackbird, 3728 NE Sandy)
On Creeper Lagoon's new EP, Remember the Future, the band is in a decidedly thoughtful mood, loading each track with gliding vocals and strings ranging from acoustic guitar to Dobro to cello. "So Little to Give" is the most angelic song; its vocals are wrapped in an eerie, deep-retro sound, while the backing harmonies descend from fullness to little more than a sigh. Other tracks on the EP layer looped beats under delicate acoustic or fuzzed-out electric guitar, making the whole package sound quite unlike anything Creeper Lagoon has done before--which would make sense, since Sharky Laguana is the only member left from their last release. KATHLEEN WILSON

DJ DMP (Madame Butterfly, 425 SW Stark) DJ DMP returns to everybody's favorite place to kick back, enjoy food, and drink and hear what the most cutting-edge DJs in Portland have to play. DMP is no different, as he spins a collection of old and new, from funk to hiphop. Not only will the music be great, but the bartender is known for getting the sauce flowing. Just an hour at the bar and your mood will shift from downtrodden to euphoria! Imagine if you're feeling fine when you get there. Since there's no cover you can save your change for the neighborhood panhandlers and have a night of music, booze, and charity. What more could you ask for? ERIC BOWLER

FRIDAY 1/10

THE CHASE, DOUBT THE STARS ARE FIRE, MARISSA
(Red & Black, 2138 SE Division)
For now, the punky cello, burning, skeletal bass, and drums of The Chase will have to survive without the lilting vocals of their singer, who moved away. However, with their proliferation of scrappy beats and angry, melodic cello, this evolution is probably good for them; while lyrics such as "You don't need tanks in the street/When you control the media they line up at your feet" were rousing, her timbre and vibrato had the tendency to land them somewhere in between the house band for Fiddler on the Roof and the Transfused. Now, as an instrumental three-piece, the ladies will have the opportunity to explore whatever sound they wish. They are talented and have great ideas--especially the dark, dramatic staccato of the cellist--so it'll be great to see how they turn their promising foundation into a full-blown instrumental project, or if they'll get a new singer. Get a sneak peek tonight! JS

RALF YOUTZ
(Delta Café, 4607 SE Woodstock)
Ralf Youtz, of famous Northwest bands Built to Spill, The Feelings, and Halo Benders, does some singer/songwriter style songs, covering the Clash, old reggae tunes, obscure pop gems, and old Feelings songs (I guess that's not really considered covering) while singing in a voice much like that of his old bandmate and brother-in-law, Doug Martsch... for like one-hundreth of the cost (free). KATIE SHIMER

IMPALED, ENGORGED
(Tonic Lounge, 3100 NE Sandy)
Just last weekend, I went to see Tribute, the movie about some fine people who are in tribute bands, and I was thinking of what kind of tribute band I would form. Now that's a serious question, one that is very hard to answer. Would it be a Thin Lizzy tribute or Mortiis tribute or maybe even a Seal tribute band? Damn, all those would be great. But really, I think I would be in an Impaled tribute band. Who wouldn't want to be in a band that loves to pour blood on one another and play incredibly fast for metalheads across the world? Now that's my idea of fun. But then again, I do believe I would make a great Phil Lynott of Thin Lizzy. I will just need to get an afro wig and get a little darker in complexion. CHRIS REED

DJ JOSHUA AKA IZ, JESS
(1201,1201 SW 12th)
Since the 1201 mutated away from its tastefully tacky, crimson-illuminated decor (for which I, for one, was bereft), it seems to be searching to find its own voice as a Club (with a capital C). Bringing out someone like SF's Joshua is exactly what works in that size room: he's not on the Ohm level of hype and cheesy, 3D flyer graphics, but surely deserves more than to be stuck in a cafe setting. In keeping with his part in the Chicago-house flavored production duo Iz & Diz, Joshua brings a pumpin' house sound that works the dancefloor properly (don't expect trancey fluff) without being too industrial or falsetto. ELLIOTT ADAMS

31KNOTS, CHECK ENGINE, THE JOGGERS
(Blackbird, 3728 NE Sandy)
Check Engine, better known as Sweep The Leg Johnny Part Deux, is a tighter, slightly more diversified version of its former saxophone-tottling self. STLJ irked out a quirky corner of indiedom for themselves in the mid-'90s via relentless tours alongsite stalwarts Braid, Compound Red, and Rainer Maria, all of whom were then in their heyday (with the exception of RM, who continues to flourish.) Those familiar with Sweep's distinctive but unchanging modus operandi won't find much, if any, evolution within Check Engine, but what the hey? These guys have amused themselves reconfiguring complex time sigs within a jazz-punk equation for close to a decade, and if they can still tour successfully, more power to 'em. While the musicianship here isn't in question, the dead horse might be wondering why it's still being beaten. JOAN HILLER

Q-BURNS ABSTRACT MESSAGE(Berbati's, 231 SW Ankeny) Q-Burns Abstract Message is one of the most sought after DJs/producers/musicians in the country. His new album, Invisible Airline, utilizes the beautiful vocals of Lisa Shaw, as well as a live band that mixes in seamlessly with electronic beats. The result is a departure from Q-Burns' traditional electronic dance music towards a style that is at once folky and techno. JWS

STYLES OF BEYOND, QUIVAH, MADGESDIQ, DJ CHEAPSHOT, IDENTICAL STRANGERS, DJ SPARK, DJ SNEAKERS
(Fez)
In addition to Styles of Beyond, who will hopefully be performing stuff from their forthcoming record, Identical Strangers consists of DJ Wicked versus DJ The Evil One... you can see where they get their moniker. Yet another great hiphop show at the chiffon-swathed Fez. JS See MWBW pg 13

OLD TIME MUSIC FESTIVAL
(Norse Hall)
Lovers of fiddles, banjos, and square dancing: prepare yourselves for one of Portland's biggest Old Time Music gatherings. The fourth annual Old Time Music Festival features Portland staples like the Stairwell Sisters, the Lee Stripling Band, and of course the ever-present Foghorn Stringband. The two-day fest includes a big ol' concert Friday evening, music and dance workshops throughout the day on Saturday, and a square dancing ho-down Saturday night! Diddly doo! JWS

SATURDAY 1/11

DEGENERATE ART ENSEMBLE, SUPER UNITY, NEQUAQUAM VACUUM
(Blackbird)
Degenerate Art Ensemble's website describes their style as "experimental jazz/acoustic punk/performance art." That combination of uber-artsy terminology should be enough to get you reaching for the wallet, but if it isn't, know this: DAE isn't just self-consciously arty; they're also a lot of fun. They slink around, they dance, they blat on horns, and they interact with the audience. JWS

GOTHIC SKATE STARRING DJS RETROGRADE, RETROVIRUS, CURATRIX
See MWBW pg 13

KLEVELAND, CAPTAIN ROCK, APOCALYPSTIKS
(Doc's)
Kleveland is all glammy bravado. Their lead lady vocalist manages to spew tough sex appeal, thankfully without sounding like a prostitute. And even though one of their songs opens exactly like "Walking on Sunshine" by Katrina and the Waves, I'm inclined not to care that much. They're talented musicians, and tonight they'll be all mixed in with some talented pole dancing. KS

'80S NOIR STARRING DJ KEANE
(Tiger Bar, 317 NW Broadway)
DJ Keane still spins abstract hiphop and other tasty morsels with Deena at Tiger Bar every Monday night. This night, however, is particularly special, because he's excavating the "dark, unusual '80s cuts," including old school hiphop, "'lost' black '80s jams," and my favorite, "the funky space cadet electrofunk." If you ever wanted to dig deep in the mind of a DJ, here's your chance to get some funky ass history. Plus, it's free. JS

CAMARO HAIR, CHARMPARTICLES
(Ohm, 31 NW 1st)
Not to single anyone out, but when do we reach our quota for shaggy hair and sensitive pop hooks? Honestly, we're running out of descriptive phrases around here. Having said that, Camaro Hair does a fine job of writing sweet, vulnerable songs that are immediately catchy and inoffensive. They should investigate ugliness and odiousness. Seriously, is it because of the rain? Are we so fragile? One fun thing is the occasional launch into Meatloafy sections. Otherwise, this is what you call mass-media friendly. It could be Lisa Loeb with one testicle and half her weight on a distortion pedal. The Charmparticles are certainly easy on the ears as well, but their songwriting efforts show through in their polished performances. Their music is mellow and spacey, which probably isn't going to jar anyone's sensibilities, but is well thought-out and creatively crafted, instead of sounding like they're pandering to VH1. MArjorie skinner

BRONWYN, THE MINOR THIRDS
(Disjecta)
You can say one thing about the Minor Thirds, and it's that they're all camp. Using a drum machine, acoustic guitar, and joke-singy male vocals, they create interesting, spur-of-the-moment music, which sounds like talented kids fucking around in the basement. They have a strange mix, though, with some songs relying on acoustic guitar and singing and others being a frantic collection of drum machine beats and samples. Honestly, from their live show, I really don't know what to expect. KS

SUNDAY 1/12

HENRY ROLLINS
(Aladdin)
This tour is all spoken-word stuff, so expect to hear the gym rat's acerbic take on society, delivered with the cynical candor of a standup comedian. For those who prefer Rollins' writing in the musical form, his publishing house, 2.13.61, recently released Unwelcomed Songs: Collected Lyrics 1980-1992. JENNIFER MAERZ

MONDAY 1/13

OTHER MEN MY AGE, BRONWYN
(Blackbird)
The Other Men My Age, who still, still, STILL have one of the best band names in town, rock their fancy-ass, Louisville '98-meets-Midwest-post-punk '01 guitar-work and vocally channel what appears to be depression/dissatisfaction. If you are depressed and dissatisfied, or really just want to hear some good, slightly screamy, minor-key guitar dudes nattily punch out your ears with precision and fire, get in on this shit. JS

TUESDAY 1/14

ROGERS SISTERS, GREEN CIRCLES, POINT LINE PLANE, DJS TINKEY & MADRIGAL
(Blackbird)
See Music pg 14, MWBW pg 13

CRAZYTOWN
(B Complex)
According to photos on their website, Crazytown frontman Shifty Shellshock wears a t-shirt that sports the words "I Choked Linda Lovelace" on it. Not to trust the T-shirt slogan of someone named Shifty Shellshock, but one must wonder what he is implying here. Is Shellshock's penis so fucking huge that it caused Lovelace (now deceased, which makes this all the more creepy) to choke upon when inserted into her mouth? Or does the shirt serve as some sort of warning to others who desire to place his genitals in his/her mouth(s)? Is it some sort of Genital Elephantitis that curses Shellshock's every move, thus making the shirt a desperate cry for help? Remember, Lovelace's famous quote from Deep Throat is "The man I marry has to have a nine-inch cock," which would imply that Shellshock's penis (presumably erect, but the shirt does not specify) is over a foot long. Fascinating! CARMELO MARTINEZ

WEDNESDAY 1/15

ROLLERBALL, NUDGE, NERVEWHEEL
(Blackbird)
With local label Road Cone (Jackie-O Motherfucker, Loren MazzaCane Connors) figuratively shutting its doors, Rollerball finds itself homeless. But it's hard to believe they'll be orphaned for long, because they're one of the most compelling, oddest, and completely demonic (in the olde way, not the metal way), musical acts in Portland. Blending a great rhythm section, transcendent harmonies, piano melodies, the occasional skronk of a sax, and the secret ingredient that is Shane DeLeon, Rollerball makes music that no one else could, even if they had the wherewithal to try. Nervewheel is the never-before-seen-in-Portland, new "punk prog" proj of Seattle guitar virtuoso Bill Horist, who has fingers like Silly Putty, and is the MacGyver of guitar-making. JS See Music pg 14

PAPA ROACH, BLINDSIDE, MEMENTO
(Roseland, NW 6 th & Davis)
The only thing more embarrassing than the taste of Pepsi Blue, is the fact that Sacramento nu-metalers Papa Roach were in a commercial for that dreadful product. First off, when it comes to low-budget soda and nu-metal, Papa Roach is years behind Insane Clown Posse and their allegiance to the Midwest budget pop, Faygo. Secondly, what the fuck where they thinking? I know, when you play a form of music that cites Fred Durst as an innovator, it's hard to tie in any sort of credibility, but hawking blue soda doesn't seem like the right path to take if you want to be taken seriously. But then again, being taken seriously doesn't seem to be on the Papa Roach day planner, so they can spend their sentence of being doomed to "Where Are They Now" obscurity by counting all that soda money and enjoying that delicious "Berry-Cola Fusion ™" of Pepsi Blue. CM

DJ WICKED, COOL NUTZ & DJ CHILL, SLEEP, MADGESDIQ, SIRENS ECHO
(Tonic)
Local hiphop icons join DJ Wicked to add a live element to his regularly scheduled programming. This edition features a cast of established and upcoming acts that are building the foundation of the Portland hiphop scene. Cool Nutz and DJ Chill team up to bring an edgy combination of MC and DJ. Rapid-fire MC Sleep of Oldominion fame figures to entertain at a breakneck pace. Sirens Echo, which combines the verbal acrobatics of Syndel from Oldominion with the singing talents of Toni Hill of Hungry Mob, is sure to be a crowd favorite, while rising home team hero, Madgesdiq, keeps it moving with a combination of in your face socio-political messages with laidback, lighter fare. All of this adds up to a dope night, but it's just another in the long-running legacy Wicked has created around town. EB