THURSDAY 1/13

CHARMPARTICLES, CHRIS TSEFALAS, THINK AIRBAG
(Doug Fir Lounge, 830 E Burnside) Portland's two-manned Think Airbag have a spacey-pop sound that is cute and desirable beyond comprehension. Not gayish hip cute like the Snuggle-Ups, but homegrown and wholesome cute like teddy bears in astronaut outfits. They offer no overtly fresh or abstract sounds, but master electro-pop with a sharp sense for melody, order, and layering--ultra organic indie instrumentation over beeps and twinkly synth sounds. Most synth-pop should be approached with apprehension to protect one's constitution from painfully mawkish lyrics, but Sean Bartley's Morning Jacket styled vocals offer space-themed imagery that is delicately chosen, sparse, and comforting. Sometimes it's refreshing to write the rest of a song in your head before hearing it, and then it echoes back just as you imagined it. If you have not heard their old stuff, than you will be double wammied tonight with their new release, Oldest Known Planet Identified. JENNA ROADMAN



COLLIDE, WRITTEN IN ASHES, SUBMARINE FLEETS
(Sabala's Mt Tabor, 4811 SE Hawthorne) "Goth babes are so hot right now!" So coos Jane magazine about Medusa-haired siren kaRIN, who joins demonic Paul Shaffer doppelganger Static in the "orgasm-inducing" electro-industrial duo Collide. Until recently, Collide has confined all this pale beauty and climax-catalyzing compositional skill to records; Collide released five albums in 11 years without playing a single show. But on the stiletto heels of its well-received live debut at last Halloween's Dracula's Ball in Philadelphia, Collide decided to play a few more gigs before returning to the coffin-like comfort of the studio. For a group with little practice, Collide puts on a sensational show, complete with entrancing video clips, a four-piece backing band and a darkly elegant "White Rabbit" cover. ANDREW MILLER



GAVIN FROOME
(Saucebox, 214 SW Broadway) Vancouver producer Gavin Froome's 2001 disc Post + Beam (Nordic Trax) oozed frictionless house music with wan sprinklings of "soul" and beats like the door knocks of tentative gentlemen callers. You can eat off these productions; innocuous is the operative word. Froome's certainly good at what he does, but his stuff really is the dance-world equivalent of "lite jazz." While many big-ballin' DJs love the cat, I think St. Germain does this schtick much better. Froome's new disc, Underground Heroes, homages his house-music influences, and shows much more vigor and diversity than his other albums. DAVE SEGAL



TONY FURTADO, SCOTT LAW BAND
(Berbati's Pan, 10 SW 3rd) Tony "No Relation to Nelly" Furtado has just a few weeks to prepare for an unforgiving opening slot. Starting February 1, he'll be warming East Coast crowds for Gregg Allman and his all-star octet. The one-time Portland resident has been concentrating on surprisingly standard singer/songwriter material recently--2004's These Chains was his first vocal-centric release--but this set promises a return to his earlier eclectic genre-jumping form. Musically, Furtado's a ramblin' man--his live shows range from bluegrass banjo to scorching slide-guitar blues to mellowed-out acoustic folk, with his soft-spoken singing voice making increasingly common cameos. AM



HUSTLER WHITE, THE FORMLESS
(Dunes, 1909 NE MLK) See Music, Pg 19



MERCURY LUST LAB FEATURING GOODTIME GIL & THE CHAMPAGNE COWBOYS, PILLOWFIGHT
(Dante's, 1 SW 3rd) See My, What a Busy Week! Pg 15



MIRAH, THE BLOW, TRICROTIC, RIGAMORTIS
(Nocturnal, 1800 E Burnside) See Music, Pg 17; My, What Busy Week! Pg 15



TELEGRAPH BENEFIT FEATURING ADELAIDE, THE PORTLAND VAMPIRES, MATT MARBLE, JOHN WEINLAND, CADENCE
(Holocene, 1001 SE Morrison) The new nonprofit Telegraph (www.telegrapharts.org ) will, when all said is done, be a much-needed artists networking resource, offering an extensive online database wherein artists of all different backgrounds and mediums can seek each other out. They also have a great programming lineup planned, chock full of film, dance, visual art, and other events specifically designed to bring different types of art together and see what happens. So support the humanities in your community by coming to Telegraph's first official fundraiser; or, if you don't give a flying fuck, come to hear some great (and cheap: $3) music courtesy of, amongst many acts, the hauntingly beautiful film/music compositions of Adelaide, the sweet acoustic crooning of John Weinland, and the gently powerful rock ditties of up-and-comers Cadence, who I guarantee will sex your face right off. JUSTIN WESCOAT SANDERS



FRIDAY 1/14

THE CLOROX GIRLS, THE SHEMPS, THE CATHOLIC BOYS, THE DISKORDS, THE INNOCENTS, THE WEEKENDERS
(Meow Meow, 320 SE 2nd Ave) From The Weekenders' website and Myspace profile alone, I'm in love with them. Barely old enough to get into bars, they wear their rambunctious youth and reluctance to practice their instruments with pride. They are an all female group that blatantly rehashes an off-key version of Nasty Facts fronted by Belinda Carlisle, and they don't give a shit what you think. All they want to do is rock-n-roll along 66 drying their polished toenails out the car window while drinking Sparks. JENNA ROADMAN



CLUMSY LOVERS, CROSS-EYED ROSIE
(Berbati's Pan, 10 SW 3rd) Many bluegrass bands play with violent velocity. The banjo and guitar players in these groups shred strings with manic urgency, fingers flying as if they had five minutes to scratch their way through a stack of lottery tickets that contained a jackpot winner. However, this rural thrash usually lacks a certain cathartic crash. Without pummeling percussion, these twang tornadoes swirl up a lot of dust but lack the brute force needed to drive hay blades through tree trunks. The Clumsy Lovers' Gord Robert, a former drum teacher, gives the group the gravity to cover U2 and AC/DC with resonant rhythmic bombast. Fiddle player Andrea Lewis and mandolin master Jason Homey both taught picking for a living before becoming Lovers, and the versatile Vancouver-based quintet's instrumental excellence speaks well for their instructional qualifications. AM



FISHBONE, DR. THEOPOLIS, NEW BLOOD REVIVAL, 6 MILLION DOLLAR BAND
(Sabala's Mt Tabor, 4811 SE Hawthorne) Contrary to what you may have come to understand, Fishbone is an overwhelmingly brilliant band. Their hyper-intense melange of LA punk and black American music's lunatic/outsider skein (See Parliament, Sun Ra, et al.) remained an utterly vital formula through their heroically successful ventures into glittering ska, brutal funk, and fantasy metal. Although Fishbone are now permanently traveling the same total-pro circuits as everyone from Motorhead to Morris Day, it would be truly foolish to dismiss them as ska-revival lightweights or forget their fanatic genius. SAM MICKENS



HOTT PINK, BOOKMOBILE, GENERAL STUDIES
(Holocene, 1001 SE Morrison) We are at a point in musical history where it is pretty undeniable that software is the new generation of musical instrument. Bookmobile are among the Northwest's most virtuosic laptop-wielders; a band that truly feels like a band and not like the drafting table product of a nanotechnology major. Their music contains all of the granular microsound-digging and skittering post-dance music references of the finest around, but also retains an undulating, loose feel that would put most post rock bands to shame. SM



LIBRETTO, THE SAND PEOPLE, SIDEWAZ SPEECH, DJ KEZ
(Ash Street, 225 SW Ash) The Sandpeople's CD Points of View is selling off the shelves on cdbaby.com, and when you listen to their songs, you can see why. Their emcees play off each other intelligently over a mix of minimal electronic drums, scratching, and samples and create tracks that smell of talent rather than over-production. Check out the show, and their new 19-song disc--once it comes back in stock, that is. KS



MANIC D AND FOGATRON, SANTOTZIN, CLOCKWORK, VILLAGELLIOT, DJ PAPERCUTS
(Tonic Lounge, 3100 NE Sandy Blvd) This may be getting redundant, but praises must yet again be sung about Portland's beloved duo Manic D and Fogatron--this time because, as is usually the case when our staff gets too oxy-ed out to function, we totally listed their last show on the wrong day, and perhaps at the wrong venue. To the fans, I say: sorry. ZP



COLIN MELOY, JOE HAEGE
(Doug Fir Lounge, 830 E Burnside) See Music, Pg 17



RUNAWAY BOYS, POWER OF COUNTY
(Devil's Point, 5305 SE Foster) No worries, despite what the name may suggest, the Runaway Boys are not trying to be the next Stray Cats, which is good 'cuz I've not heard a single soul decry the lack of pouty, poufy rockabilly pretty boy fashion plates in town. No, the Runaway Boys lean more towards a country rock rasp, taking a similar tack to their local neighbors in I Can Lick any SOB in the House, so look out. MS



SATURDAY 1/15

BELLA FAYES, JASMINE ASH
(White Eagle, 836 N Russell) As much as I would like to save face in the matter, I have to admit that, at first passing listen, the Bella Fayes' recent Far From the Discos passively entertained--alright with the sort of fridge-buzzing power pop that has folded over upon itself so many times that it's sort of difficult to distinguish its exact genealogy. The sort of thing that could, say, comfortably play in the background on an episode of Everwood. Not altogether a bad thing, to be sure--but something that should be taken in small doses… one mp3 at a time, perhaps. Ciphering through a full 10 tracks, the sheer gloss of it all tends to wear a touch. Now that I think about it, maybe the Bella Fayes are the perfect band for the iPod shuffle revolution. Then again, maybe not. ZP



KULTUR SHOCK
(Dante's, 1 SW 3rd) Seattle's Kultur Shock are what you might aptly describe as "World" music--in that it's nebulously "worldly," distinctly European, and a bit hard to specifically pinpoint. You might also aptly describe Kultur Shock as "multi-culti," considering the sprawling national ties of the band's make-up. And while any or all of these descriptors may lead one to yawns of bored indifference, please take note that we have neither described Kultur Shock as "hippy" music nor "jam band"--as the KS take their gypsy-fied cues more from the safety-pinned tenants of punk than from the tie-died and Deadheaded. The difference may sound subtle, but trust me: there is a difference. ZP



VIVA VOCE, AQUEDUCT, MODERNSTATE
(Doug Fir Lounge, 830 E Burnside) See My, What a Busy Week! Pg 15



THE WPP, SIBERIA, NO SECRETS BETWEEN SAILORS, THE ASSAILANT, THE POWER AND THE GLORY
(Davey Jones' Locker, 82nd & Hawthorne) With the Meow Meow gone tits up [See It's Who You Know, Pg 25], it may be time to start investing you adolescent energies into one of Portland's remaining all ages venues--and what better a club to focus on than hardcore stalwart Davey Jones' Locker? I'm askin'! If, like yours truly, you've yet to check out the club's new digs at 82nd and Hawthorne, what better a night than in the company of the sloppy, shrieking mess that is Vancouver B.C.'s WPP? I'm askin'! ZP



SUNDAY 1/16

NINA HAGEN, STORM AND THE BALLS
(Dante's, 1 SW 3rd) See My, What a Busy Week! Pg 15



DARCI CASH, BRIGHTWOOD, CERULIAN BLUE, the angry oats, MISSING JIMMY
(Meow Meow, 320 SE 2nd Ave) Cerulean Blue is a Portland band with not one, but three different websites (at Myspace, PureVolume, and the official band site) and a slew of radio friendly heart-tuggers with lyrics like "They say that love is blind 'cuz you are the only one that I see" and a lead vocalist who sounds like Billy Corgan before he learned to sing. Hmm, what else do we have here… ? Darci Cash should be fun, with equally heavy, but better written earnest pop ditties and a hot female keyboardist who sings sometimes. The Angry Orts promisingly describe their style as a "complete mess. We play what we like, which includes Ska, Punk, straight forward Rock, Reggae, and Americana (with more styles sure to come)." Blechy. Brightwood has a name that Beavis and Butthead would find really funny. JWS



MONDAY 1/17

2X4 ON THE FLOOR
(Doug Fir Lounge, 830 E Burnside) See My, What a Busy Week! Pg 15



TUESDAY 1/18 Now that's what I call boneriffic!



WEDNESDAY 1/19

RICK BAIN, THE HIGH VIOLETS, RELAY
(Berbati's 10 SW 3rd) Rick Bain's first rec, Crooked Autumn Sun, totally blew. It was sludgy, shat out psychedelia without a lick of the mysterious shimmer and fizzle that good psyche needs. Wasn't all his fault, though; Crooked was rush-recorded in something like 3.5 minutes so Bain could take his group Genius Position on the road with the Dandy Warhols. Five years later, Bain's back but gone is the lame-o Genius Position name and most of the forced acid-damage. His new album, Virtual Heavy Pet, is more paisley'd '60s pop than anything--sunny, stoned, loose-limbed. If you dug him back in the day when he 4-tracked his own version of Pet Sounds, your ol' buddy hath returned! It's like Return of the King with better drugs! ADAM GNADE



OXCART, SOPHE LUX, JASON ELTON
(Meow Meow, 320 SE 2nd Ave) All my favorite feminist pop stars have been letting me down lately. From Liz Phair's spectacular career suicide to Cat Power's contrived onstage meltdowns to PJ Harvey's tributes to greasy Vincent Gallo, none of the ladies seem to be able to keep it together. So you can imagine my joy when I discovered Sophe Lux. Lead singer Wendy Haynes (yes, she's Todd's sister) fronts a talented band that plays lush, brainy, girl positive pop. Dark, but never veering into emo territory, Haynes' lyrics are both intelligent and heartfelt. Oxcart describes themselves as a mix of atmospheric trance-rock and jazz, dance-inducing funk, and hard-edged rock. My advice to them: pick one genre and stick with it. Hybridization is great for cars; not so great for bands. CORTNEY HARDING



STORM AND THE BALLS CD RELEASE PARTY
(Dante's, 1 SW 3rd) In another contribution to the pile of high reward/low effort endeavors of Storm & The Balls, the popular loungifying cover band has released their second record, Vasectomy (album title: yawn). Not only do they not write their own songs (gleaning their success almost entirely from the inarguably formidable and deserving voice and charisma of the beautiful Amazonian frontwoman Storm), but they couldn't even think up enough new songs to cover to fill the album! That's right, it's a remix album! Sooo… the songs have gone from their original form, through the Stormification process, and then set to boring atmospheric beats. This must be the sonic equivalent of over-processed cheese. For the sake of experimentation, fine--but for the record it's lazy. Even though every shirt tucker-inner with a hard on and low sperm count will buy it anyway, ensuring its financial success. MS