The Horns of Happiness Towne Lounge, 8/23

THURSDAY 8/17

BARK, HIDE AND HORN, LAURA GIBSON, KELE GOODWIN

(Holocene, 1001 SE Morrison) Oregon native Laura Gibson has a soft and delicate (but confident) voice that really gets me (in a very good way.) It's easy to listen to (I heard her song "Hands in Pockets" play at Doug Fir's restaurant a couple days ago) but it's in no way lightweight. Gibson's recordings have featured members of Norfolk and Western, which is a good reference point, but she most certainly has it over them in terms of catchiness, accessibility, and just plain ol' listenability. Don't miss this great asset to modern Americana. Opener Kele Goodwin is definitely on the same page as Ms. Gibson. Headliners Bark, Hide and Horn are a little more... rambunctious, which should end this well-rounded (free!) night on a nice upbeat note. BRENT RICHARDSON

OHMEGA WATTS, COPY, ALELA DIANE

(Doug Fir, 830 E Burnside) This is kind of an odd bill, no? Like, we gots funky, earthy rapper Ohmega Watts holding down the top slot. There's electro wizard (and by "wizard" I mean "soulful, trippy, laptop magician") Copy in the middle, and Joanna Newsom-esque folkie Alela Diane kickin' shizz off with her bell-clear voice and acoustic awesomeness. So, yeah, it's not the most even-keeled, cohesive night, but it's for reals fun and for reals good entertainment. All in all, for reals. GRANT MORRIS

JASON WEBLEY, ANDRU BEMIS

(Red & Black Café, 2138 SE Division) See also Music, pg. 23.

CROSSTIDE, SHAPES AND SIZES, THE LISTENING

(Dante's, 1 SW 3rd) See My, What a Busy Week!, pg. 19.

HOTOGISU, SMEGMA, GHOSTING, DEAD/BIRD

(Food Hole, 20 NW 3rd) Man, I have been having the hardest time describing Hotogisu's noise assault. I mean, you can only write about so many blindingly loud and caustic bands without, like, totally repeating yourself a zillion times. So, friendly dudes, I was stumped. That is, until I Googled across this online quote, from some super young hipster kid's MySpace page. Everything is "sic" by the way. "Ja, jesu was loud :d! as a matter of fact the act opening for them, hotogisu, was much harder on the ears because not only were they loud, some of the sounds generated were ear splitting (lyu fabulous for me, you know i like noise! but my poor sis was finding it a bit heavy going... hahah)." "Hahah," indeed. PERFECT DESCRIPTION OF THIS BAND. Hats off to whoever is behind the MySpace profile "Post Disco Crash (dkfc)." I sent you an add request! Don't deny me! Lol! GM

LIVE WIRE! W/HEROES AND VILLAINS, MARCHFOURTH MARCHING BAND, HOSKINS AND BREEN, CHRIS COLEMAN, THOMAS LAUDERDALE, TOM SPANBAUER

(Aladdin Theater, 3017 SE Milwaukie) Remember the clown from Happy Gilmore? The creepy, stilt-walking one, who takes a vicious tumble, bashes his head, and bleeds all over the concrete, only to arise from the dead to sing a morbid little jingle? You probably don't, but that's what Portland-based quintet, Heroes and Villains' somber, vaudevillian theatrics bring to mind—a Quaalude-popping, smile-plastered clown singing the tale of his own death. So much so that I can only imagine the cavalcade of decrepit fire-breathers and sword-swallowers sure to accompany the band on stage. Yes, my dreams of juggling clowns and dancing elephants will almost positively be dashed, but the soaring, moody wavers of sometimes-vocalist Maranda Dabel's stirring pipes are well worth the price of admission. NOAH SANDERS

LYNYRD SKYNYRD

(Les Schwab Amphitheater, 344 SW Shevlin-Hixon, Bend) I would never wish death on anyone, but for argument's sake let's just say it's a pity that Lynyrd Skynyrd's 1977 plane crash didn't take out the entire band and all persons involved in their infrastructure, business making, and management. See, sometimes keepin' on keepin' on is not only an insult to the ones that died (like the fucking lead singer, come on guys), but to the fans, and to true rational thought and taste. The Skynyrd that exists today isn't the rowdy, fun-loving bunch of hillbillies that gave us (the overplayed but surreally good) "Free Bird" or "Sweet Home Alabama." They're the cashin'-in, over-the-hill, grave-robbing douchebags that don't know when to quit. So, here goes: quit. Thank you. ADAM GNADE

FRIDAY 8/18

OHIOAN, JEFREY LEIGHTON BROWN, MARK KAYLOR

(Valentine's, 232 SW Ankeny) Local dude Ryne Warner (Ghost to Falco, Thanksgiving) heads up Ohioan, a band/project that merges experimental folk with soaring horn sections, ghostly traditionals, and so much heart. Totally go check these kids out. And pay attention to the lyrics; Warner's got some killer flows. Also tonight Jefrey from Evolutionary Jass Band and experimental music ass-kicker Mark Kaylor play. Big props to Valentine's, who continue to support the art that matters. GM

BIG BUSINESS, RABBITS, RED FANG

(Food Hole, 20 NW 3rd) Jared from Tight Bros. and Coady from Murder City Devils make up Big Business, a band that's half Lightning Bolt minimalist destruction, half Sabbath stoned-as-hell death assault. Songs like "Focus Pocus" off of last year's Head for the Shallow are pure evil rock bombast. It's bong-huffing, BMX-jumping, blacklight-lit stuff straight out of... y'know what? I was going to say something like "straight out of 1976," but fuck that. Music like this is timeless. BR

COMETS ON FIRE, 16 BITCH PILE-UP, ETERNAL TAPESTRY

(Holocene, 1001 SE Morrison) See also Music, pg. 21.

NICK JAINA, MATT SHEEHY, HORSEFEATHERS

(Mississippi Studios, 3939 N Mississippi) It's going to be a night of sensitive, sincere emotion. A real heartstring-puller, if you know what I mean. Nick Jaina, Binary Dolls' multi-talented lead singer, will break away from his New York-esque experimentation, to grace the crowd with a smattering of his eclectically folky, singer/songwriter stylings. NS

DON CABALLERO, ZOMBI, THE GET HUSTLE

(Doug Fir, 830 E Burnside) Generally, when a band goes through members like Larry King goes through wives, quality pretty much goes out the window. Such is not the case with Don Caballero, who despite boasting only one original member (tempestuous drummer, Damon Che) still manages to be as intricate and bombastic as when they ruled the math-rock roost of the mid '90s. Also hailing from Don Cab's homestead of Pittsburgh are Zombi, a duo with an awesome array of synthesizers that would make Rick Wakeman blush. If you have a Tangerine Dream record or a Dario Argento DVD in your collection, these guys are your new favorite band. JOSH BLANCHARD See also My, What a Busy Week!, pg. 19.

GHOSTING W/VALET, PUMICE, PRIVACY, METAL, TIM BILLER

(The Artistery, 4315 SE Division) See Music, pg. 23.

SATURDAY 8/19

A SILVER MT. ZION, CARLA BOZULICH

(Doug Fir, 830 E Burnside) A Silver Mt. Zion was formed by Godspeed! You Black Emperor members Efrim Menuck, Thierry Amar, and Sophie Trudeau as a practice band to help Menuck learn to score music. Somewhere during this process ASMZ became the catchall for Menuck's material that didn't fit into the Godspeed! model. The results are eerie, quavering post-rock compositions that side as much with chamber music as they do Godspeed!'s haunting soundscapes. The Montreal-based band's new album is the gorgeous Horses in the Sky. BR

HOLY GHOST REVIVAL, BILLION DOLLAR BRAIN, WHIPS AND THE WHALES, MR. DIVISADERO

(Food Hole, 20 NW 3rd) A few months ago I heard scattered, hush-hush rumors that Holy Ghost Revival were "on a break." In band talk, this generally means that everyone in the band hates each other and there are no plans to make music together ever again. Thankfully, despite the validity of those rumors, we're seeing that the word "break" really doesn't mean the end, as the Holy Ghost Revival will attest to tonight at the Food Hole. MEGAN SELING

THOR, ZOLAR X, STOVOKOR

(Dante's, 1 SW 3rd) Jon Mikl Thor is an enduring icon of glam rock/metal, and one of the true originators of rock theater. Thor's enviable career thundered off the ground with his appearance on the Merv Griffin Show in 1973 and he has maintained a steady pace ever since, selling hundreds of thousands of records. Over the last three decades, Thor has explored the tongue-in-cheek styles of Sweet/Mott the Hoople/Bowie, hard-hitting metal moves of the '80s, and flirted briefly with nookie metal in the late '90s. Starting out in Vancouver, BC, Thor first waved seismic in the bodybuilding world, becoming Mr. Canada and Mr. USA, always using heavy music as an intensive training tool. He compounded his powerful physique with powerful rock, and thus began this amazing cult legend's long reign in the hazy area between superstardom and the dark underground. Blowing up hot-water bottles, bending steel, and having cinder blocks broken over his chest are all in a night's work. Thor has successfully managed to reinvent himself once again. The legions of fans are still there and new generations are finding out for themselves that Thor is just as cool now as he ever was in 1978, 1985, or 2006. The editorial blokes from Classic Rock Magazine voted Thor one of the greatest 100 frontmen of all time. Most critically: No Thor = No Manowar. JJ DIXON

THE MOJITOS, BEN FOWLER QUINTET

(Mississippi Pizza Pub, 3552 N Mississippi) Apparently, mojitos are not a "new" drink. As one of my friends tactfully noted, "They were big a while ago, and everybody was annoyed with them, and then they went away, and now, for some reason, you've discovered them, and you won't shut the fuck up about them." That "some reason" that introduced me to mojitos was one man: James "Sonny" Crockett (Colin Ferrell), in the big screen adaptation of Miami Vice. When asked what he likes to drink, Ferrell/Crockett bewilderingly replies, "I'm a fiend for mojitos." What a great line. Anyway, after myself and Mercury Music Editor Adam Gnade went and saw Miami Vice (for the second time), we tried some mojitos (for the first time). They are delicious. We ordered mojito after mojito after mojito, and we got drunk. I will hereby drink nothing else. One might even say I'm a fiend for them. In fact, the only thing that would make mojitos any more radical is if they lost the lameass name and were instead called "Crocketts." This revolution should take place here, now, tonight, at Mississippi Pizza, where a band called the Mojitos shall hereby and henceforth be called "the Crocketts." Go. Shout that at them. Cheer them on, but do it using their new name. Granted, I've never heard the Crocketts play before; they could be horrible. But nevertheless, mojitos are delicious. I'm a fiend for them. ERIK HENRIKSEN

SUNDAY 8/20

GHOSTING, PUMICE, BONUS, GMS, GROUPER

(Holocene, 1001 SE Morrison) The prolific recorded output of New Zealand's Pumice harks back to days long past (I believe they were called the '90s) when lo-fi enthusiasts like Simon Joyner and Loren Connors would sweat out a cassette release of raw, acoustic ramblings every week. Pumice's sole member, Stefan Neville, picks out creaky folk numbers that more often than not plummet into cavernous dins of accordions and tape hiss. JB

MONDAY 8/21

BOWLING FOR SOUP, FENIX TX, FLASHLIGHT BROWN, ARMY OF FRESHMAN

(Hawthorne Theatre, 1507 SE 39th) Seeing as how the Mercury's never left a dead horse unbeaten, I've been patiently awaiting my batphone call since I saw the first ad for Bowling for Soup's triumphant return to our fair city. Last Friday, it came. Quote: "I'm sure you're probably over it by now, but are you interested in writing about Bowling for Soup?" Oh contraire, oh contraire. For the uninitiated: A long-ass time ago, I wrote a very brief blurb—very much like this one, in fact—in which I stated that Bowling for Soup were the worst band in the history of pop music. The next day, at the band's request, hundreds of illiterate teenagers sent me hate mail. Then they put my quote on a T-shirt. Then I vainly threatened legal action if the entire Mercury staff didn't receive said T-shirt. Then one of the guys from BFS emailed me (PERSONALLY!!!! OMG!!!!) to assure me that we would get our T-shirts. We never got our T-shirts. Long story short: Could somebody please pick one up for me at the show tonight? ZAC PENNINGTON

JAPANTHER, THIS BIKE IS A PIPE BOMB, SHOW ME THE PINK

(Wonder Ballroom, 128 NE Russell) See My, What a Busy Week!, pg. 19.

RUDE BOY

(Clinton Street Theater, 2522 SE Clinton) Rude Boy (UK, 1980) isn't necessarily a documentary of the Clash, but it is something akin to it. Instead of a traditional documentary structure, the filmmakers take a fictional "fan" character and set his story along with actual footage of then-current events, Clash shows, and political rallies. Today's Joe Strummer's birthday. Bake him a cake and FAX it to rock 'n' roll heaven. He likes lemon icing. Go the extra mile. AG

ADVISORY, GUAU GUAU, THE HEADLINERS

(Towne Lounge, 714 SW 20th Pl) What does "Guau Guau" mean? I haven't the foggiest, but man do they stomp some sweet garage rock ASS! It's classic, heavy, raw stuff. Since they're a two-piece and play nice and raggedy, White Stripes comparisons might get tossed around, but don't go there. Okay, you can go there. Just don't admit it. Especially in a public forum like a weekly paper. Folks might not think you're "cool." Oh no! Not that! GM

PORTALS, GRASS CITY, DJ NATE C

(Tube, 18 NW 3rd) Since Lynyrd Skynyrd's in town this week, it makes it all the more painful to see bands like Grass City play the same sort of sweetly stoned, guitar-heavy boogie and do it so much better to nowhere near the audience. Here's Skynyrd, 30 years after the plane crash that took the real version of the band out, still dry humping Ronnie Van Zant's legacy, and coming off like rehashed idiots, while the smart, talented, hard-working Grass City fucking smoke them to little notice. But tonight they get noticed. Tonight we leave our houses and go support the good stuff. We shine a big fucking light on the true music makers and show them we care. We do care, right? We do. This I know. AG

TUESDAY 8/22

WOLF PARADE, FROG EYES, WHALE BONES

(Crystal Ballroom, 1332 W Burnside) See Music, pg. 21.

WEDNESDAY 8/23

THE HORNS OF HAPPINESS

(Towne Lounge, 714 SW 20th Pl) Bloomington, Indiana's the Horns of Happiness (Aaron F. Deer, Shelley Harrison, and Elaina Morgan) rip out raucous psychedelic pop with groaning fuzz guitar, weirdly fragmented haiku-sounding vocals, and all kindsa warbling, gauzy-ass keyboards. Releasing music on Secretly Canadian, I'd say they're somethin' like a less stormy Neutral Milk Hotel. Like smoking pot and standing all wobbly in the middle of the club while your brain throbs with the music? Me too, yo! This band is your pet and you're the hot teacher. They're bringing you so many apples today! They want an A. Give them an A! An A+! GM

SWEATER CLUB, THE #1 DADS, DYERS ROCKET, THE CHAPSTICK EQUIPT, THERMAL VISKACITY, CAPTAIN CADAVER

(Rock n Roll Pizza, 11140 SE Powell) Oh man, I hates me some ska. Hates it. Hates it with enough red-blooded passion to choke and kill every whale on Earth. (I also hate whales; fuck those fat, singing hippies.) But occasionally, and lord have mercy do I mean occasionally, some worthless, asinine ska band will drop the most rapturous horn line, the most catchy, poptastical brass burp. That's where Sweater Club comes in, a band that takes ska's horn fuckery, adds some generally vanilla indierock, and turns it into something special. The horn lines are prevalent in the mix, tight as hell, and lead Sweater Club's EMOtional rock into glorious places. This band is sublime. But not Sublime. Fuck those fat, singing hippies. GM