It is with great sadness I must write that independent record store Music Millennium's branch on NW 23rd may soon have to shut its doors for good. Without some flexibility from their landlord in the way of temporarily reduced rent while the store updates its business model, this locally owned gem would likely not live to see 2008. The closure would bizarrely leave one of Portland's posher districts without a brick-and-mortar record store. Owner Terry Currier convincingly makes the case that Music Millennium NW, in the area since 1977, preserves the neighborhood's pre-gentrification eclectic character, and brings a good deal of foot traffic and prestige to the area, and thus deserves some concessions. Negotiations are ongoing and the closure is not yet set in stone, so pick up your pens, people of Portland, and convey your concern to the store's landlord care of Music Millennium, 3158 E Burnside, Portland, OR 97214.
Speaking of relocation, the people behind PDX Pop Now! (of which I am admittedly one) are proud to announce that this year's installment of its free, all-ages festival of local music will take place August 3-5 at interdisciplinary exhibition space Disjecta. As in the past, this fourth annual festival will feature approximately 40 Portland-based musical acts reflecting a wide variety of styles. The lineup is curated by taking public feedback into account, so sidle up to your keyboard and request your favorite hometown bands, emcees, chanteuses, and such at pdxpopnow.com/requests, or via physical ballot boxes found at any local record store.
Meanwhile, the inner-Southeast building where the festival was last held, previously the venues Meow Meow and Loveland, is undergoing the latest in its seemingly ceaseless series of transformations. Adding to the current tenant list, which includes the bar and show space Rotture upstairs, a new music venue called Branx, catering to electronic music and techno, opened in the building's downstairs last weekend.
In other venue news, the equally shape-shifting, music-friendly space on the east end of Hawthorne that was once the Mt. Tabor Theatre and then became Sabala's, is again under new ownership as Mt. Tabor Legacy. The venue is up and running, and while it will continue to put on the punk and metal shows that are the space's mainstay, the sonic fare of the Legacy will also consist of blues, reggae, and rock.
The last of these real estate-related updates is for now speculative, but very exciting nonetheless. Food Hole, the down-to-earth, all-ages music oasis that shut down in its Northwest digs several months ago, may be reopening in a more hospitable SE location sometime soon under the curatorial guidance of noise master Gabe Saloman of experimental duo Yellow Swans.