The Get Up Kids w/the Hotelier, Josh Berwanger Band; Hawthorne Theatre, 1507 SE César E. Chávez
On their 1997 debut Four Minute Mile, emo lodestars the Get Up Kids seemed like the sort of band that couldn't grow up even if they tried. Songs like "Don't Hate Me" and "Stay Gold, Ponyboy" exuded a callow trepidation unique to being a shitty, hopelessly romantic adolescent—an essence that the Kids were somehow able to preserve well into adulthood. It's pretty amazing, then, how mature the follow-up album, Something to Write Home About, sounded a mere two years later. The unbridled passion of its predecessor cooled on the introspective, dull ache of "Action and Action" and "Valentine," and third record On a Wire saw the band take an even mellower turn. Matt Pryor's songwriting has always been consistently stellar, though, and 2011's There Are Rules was impressive, especially when it evoked the group's earlier leanings. Nobody wants to get old, but growing up gracefully is probably the next best thing.
"Weird Al" Yankovic; Oregon Zoo, 4001 SW Canyon
I'm tempted to say that "Weird Al" Yankovic has had one of the greatest runs in musical history, a slightly funny assertion considering his entire career revolves around shtick (which I'm assuming I don't have to describe). It's totally true, though—last year's Mandatory Fun felt as acute and relevant as his best material. At the very least, Yankovic is contemporary pop music's deftest satirist whose parodies are typically more enduring than their source material (see "White and Nerdy" vs. "Ridin'.") At most, Weird Al is a wholesome gateway into a much broader musical world. I mean, shit, he's how I discovered the Kinks and Puff Daddy.