Dance Gavin Dance w/Secrets, Alive Like Me, Defeat the Low, Vigil Wolves; Branx, 320 SE 2nd
The argument that Dance Gavin Dance was ever really a "punk" band is problematic—the group became a player long after emo and all of its variants were completely co-opted by the mainstream. So I'll make this argument instead: DGD's 2007 debut Downtown Battle Mountain is, at the very least, one of the most interesting mainstream-o records from that period. Say what you will about its laughably timeworn aesthetic, it managed to synthesize an undeniably proggy proclivity with the visceral immediacy of classic emo without seeming disparate or insincere. Still, I'm hard-pressed to forgive the band's more recent outings. Portland band Defeat the Low also plays the release show for A Nervous Smile, a grunge- and emo-indebted record on locally based Rise Records—which stands to reason, as Rise head honcho Craig Ericson is Defeat the Low's guitarist.
Wireheads w/Sloppy Kisses, Dark/Light; Red & Black Café, 400 SE 12th
Adelaide's Wireheads play druggy, off-kilter, and occasionally frightening anti-pop. Their latest LP, last year's The Late Great Wireheads, cartwheels across an unusually tenuous line that separates catchy from unlistenable.
Rozwell Kid w/The World Is a Beautiful Place and I Am No Longer Afraid to Die, the Hotelier, Posture and the Grizzly, Snow Roller; Parkway North at PSU's Smith Memorial Student Union, 1825 SW Broadway
West Virginia punk-rock-for-sissies outfit Rozwell Kid never really clicked with me until I listened to their latest LP, Too Shabby, an endearingly messy power-pop grand slam that evokes a hypothetical post-Pinkerton Weezer with Matt Sharp at the creative helm. With some of the most indelible hooks I've heard on any record this year (aside from Taylor Swift's 1989, of course), incendiary guitarmonies, and pandering, half-ironic Tumblrisms—like opening line "Simpsons season three and a thing of hummus, this is all I need"—what's not to love? (Assuming you aren't too cool, or old, for fun.) Also see our article on the Hotelier.