Up & Coming 

THURSDAY 3/24

ELECTRIC FRANKENSTEIN, HELLSIDE STRANGLERS, MUDDY RIVER NIGHTMARE BAND, THE NIGHTMARES, MR. PLOW (Sabala's Mt Tabor, 4811 SE Hawthorne) Hey Electric Frankenstein, I'm laughing at you. You're a clich, a joke. You push the loud-young-snotty rock 'n' roll steez to the point of self-parody. Punk rock as Spinal Tapian absurdity. But you're dead serious, right? Your website boasts that you've "influenced" bands like Jet and The Hives. And you're saying that with pride? You're totally clueless. You're like the rock band version of a Mountain Dew-sponsored extreme sports show hosted by Vin Diesel and you and your fans are the only ones who don't know your shit is totally corny. Thankfully, you're claiming that this'll be your final U.S. tour--we can only hope. ADAM GNADE

HOOD, TALKDEMONIC, NUDGE (Berbati's Pan, 10 SW 3rd) See Music, Pg 24

KINGDOM, MAN MAN, INVISIBLE, RECALL-SEVEN (Dante's, 1 SW 3rd) Philadelphia/New York kooks Man Man teeter precariously on the tightrope between annoyingly goofy and ridiculously sublime. You know that tightrope: It's the one Primus, Frank Zappa, Mr. Bungle, Butthole Surfers, Ween, Need New Body, Gogol Bordello, and many others have traversed with varying degrees of success. Man Man's recent disc, The Man in the Blue Turban with a Face (Ace Fu), sounds like a circus band attempting to play some vaguely Eastern European folk music after total immersion in Tom Waits' back catalog. You know, the kind of stuff you can hear in any bar in America any day of the week. And that tightrope? Man Man use it as a string instrument. DAVE SEGAL See also Music, page 27

MONO, ELUVIUM, SCUFFLE & DUSTCOUGH (Loveland, 320 SE 2nd Ave) See CD Review, page 24

PUFF PUFF GIVE, NEQUAQUAM VACUUM (Dunes, 1905 NE MLK) The band name Puff Puff Give--lifted from the famous line in Friday wherein Chris Tucker directs his pot pupil on the traditions of the ganja pass--is not entirely kitsch. The drone psychedelics of this gem of a band are very much conducive to pot smoking-- and to benevolent sharing. Dark synth loops stacked over soft and genuine falsetto vocals (that avoid oozing emo sentimentality) blend together so well, you forget which is which. And although their music has less discernible song structure than Ariel Pink, Puff Puff Give avoids the lazy meandering of typical avant-art electronica that seems esoteric and indigestible for it's own sake. Like a masculine version of On!Air!Library! if raped of all it's pop elements, be prepared to get lost in this beautiful, cynical, and articulate landscape. JENNA ROADMAN

FRIDAY 3/25

THE BETTER TO SEE YOU WITH, TIC CODE, DJ NATE (Dunes, 1905 NE MLK) Twins Charlie and Billy formed The Better To See You With with bassist/vocalist Mikey as a new way of developing a secret language. As youngsters, they gurgled to each other in their own made up verbiage. Now, much older, their inspiring, invigorating, and awesome power of communication comes off in this great hardcore meets experimental, intense, dance band. Infectiously positive and supportive of each other and their peers, it's hard not to feel like you're someone special when you're freaking out on the dance floor to this new music. AMY VECCHIONE

ERASE ERRATE, THE HOSPITALS, HORNS & CLAWS, WET CONFETTI (Loveland, 320 SE 2nd Ave) See Music, page 24

THE ROBOT ATE ME (Solid State, 911 SE Pine) See Music, Pg 24

DEMOLITION DOLL RODS, NEW WAVE HOOKERS, BUCKWILDZ, DEAD MAN'S HAND (Sabala's Mt Tabor, 4811 SE Hawthorne) See My, What a Busy Week! Pg 23

ED HARCOURT, MARTHA WAINWRIGHT, LUKE TEMPLE (Doug Fir Lounge, 830 E Burnside) Ed Harcourt is a singer/songwriter from the Jakob Dylan plane of existence. It's good, but super safe and so geared towards primetime VH1 soccer mom lust. I could definitely see myself liking his music when I get older, losing my hair, many years from now. But as of my 20's and maybe yours it's not adventurous enough. Opener Martha Wainwright is Rufus' sister. She's a folksinger that actually sounds like Bob Dylan, but will never be called the "new" him because music writers are sexist prigs. "I wish I was born a man/so I could learn how to stand up for myself," she snarls on "Bloody Mother Fucking Asshole" a song which rules intensely. AG

SATURDAY 3/26

LOU BARLOW, CORRINA REPP WITH JOE HAEGE AND ANDY BACON, TOM HEINL (Doug Fir Lounge, 830 E Burnside) Last time ol' Loobie came to town--then with the suspiciously incomplete "Sebadoh" reunion--I went to great lengths to rip our boy a new asshole, and for that I would like to apologize. Sure, dude's always been a little on the wiener side, but goddamn if he hasn't written us some of the best songs that ever smashed their heads on the indierock. Truth is, I identify with Lou--he's always played the sensitive-weenus second fiddle to the stoner cool guy (be it Eric Gaffney or J. Mascis), and no matter how hard he tries, he never really manages to completely exit their shadow. But as they say, the traits that remind us of our own shortcomings are the same that bother us the most in others. That's not your fault, Lou. And I'm sorry. ZAC PENNINGTON

TEGAN AND SARA, THE DITTY BOPS (Aladdin Theater, 3017 SE Milwaukie) I've been accused of being a huge sissy girl, and of walking around with circus music constantly blaring in my head. Both of those things may be true, but they're not the reasons I love the Ditty Bops record. I love it because it's theatrical, old-timey pop with whizbang melodies, crackerjack instrumentation, shades of vaudeville/cabaret (more Nilsson/Monkees than middle period Waits), and all the dainty graphics you could want. BUT, their music also hints at a naughty underbelly, with a vaguely vulgar streak peeking through the artful artifice ("piss is the color of tears") and the super-girly vibe. This show, even though it's an opening set for boring duo Tegan and Sara, should clue the curious into which side of the camp fence this highly promising act falls. SEAN NELSON

TWO TON BOA, VAGABOND OPERA, TELEPHONE (Dante's, 1 SW 3rd) If there's a semi-recent Northwest gem I most regret overlooking, it is undoubtedly Olympia's Two Ton Boa. Their enthralling six song self-titled EP was released on Kill Rock Stars in 1999, followed by nothing save for a leftover track that only saw light of day on the label's Field and Streams comp. The power trio's leader, vocalist/guitarist Sherry Fraser penned perfect pop tunes tainted with grinding noise rhythms a la Jesus Lizard. Her vocals recall an equally damaged Throwing Muse, alternately angelic or swinging hard from a smoky cabaret. The smoldering lyrics tell of addiction and depression. Perhaps Fraser's subsequent disappearance and re-emergence ("recovery" according to the press kit), will illuminate the dark beauty of her vision, and blow the cobwebs out of the attic. Bands this fucking good deserve a second chance. NATHAN CARSON

SUNDAY 3/27

DOUBLE LEOPARDS, MOUTHUS, AXOLOTI, EVOLUTIONARY JASS BAND (Dunes, 1905 NE MLK) Double Leopards are a heavy art-drone quartet from Brooklyn. It's heady, layered, and atmospheric, combining the heavier work of Sunn0))) with the more abstract Black Dice output without ever really jarring the listener. It's eerie, tranquil, and simultaneously unsettling. Fans of Acid Mothers Temple and Sunburned Hand of the Man will want to give these guys a listen, while Wolf Eyes devotees may already own the split. Double Leopards sound best on thick slabs of double vinyl though. And since that was out of print before you even heard of them, pick up their new gatefold CD, which is a miniature reproduction of the album. Total quality and snob approved. In a good way. NC

THE KILLS, THE SIGHTS, THE VOLUMES (Doug Fir Lounge, 830 E Burnside) See "My, What a Busy Week"! Pg. 23

PORN (THE MEN OF), LOPEZ, JOHN RAMBO, HOTBACK DESIATO (Sabala's Mt Tabor, 4811 SE Hawthorne) Porn. Now that I have your attention, kindly cock an ear toward these nasty mofos' crude, rude music, which some professor types classify as metallicus stonerundum. Now a tight trio consisting of guitarist Tim Moss, bassist Billy Anderson (renowned producer of Sleep, Fantomas, Neurosis, and many others), and drummer Dale Crover (Melvins, Nirvana), the men of Porn are cruising through America in support of Wine, Women, and Song… (Small Stone). Porn's new album sounds as if somebody spiked their hash with opium and speed. They've found the perfect rock-hard place between Black Sabbath and Motörhead. Catch Porn in the flesh and your brain will be copiously stained. DAVE SEGAL

PRETTY GIRLS MAKE GRAVES, DIO MALOS (Bossanova, 722 E Burnside) When you see a band name show up in the music listings as often as Pretty Girls Make Graves does, you know they're doing it for the love. And when you see their live show, they'll prove it to you again. The manic guitar, communal vocal offerings, and addictive post-punk sound this band churns out makes for not only a great record, but a balls-out entertaining evening the likes of which you probably haven't seen since the last time they came to town. Remember: you're never too old to become a groupie. KS

THE UPSIDEDOWN, PARKER & LILY, ASOBI SEKSU (Berbati's Pan, 10 SW 3rd) A diligent band that's been around the Portland block, The Upsidedown paid their dues, and are now finally getting pay back: they've been reviewed in Magnet as a "band to watch," and have been receiving considerable acclaim for their debut, Trust Electricity. They play out often and it shows their well-crafted and undeniably catchy psychedelic rock is powerfully perfected. Let's relish the last moments of this band's locality before they are stolen from us. If retro rock isn't your jet set then get there early for Asobi Seksu, a female-fronted fluffy pop group with a hint of a Japanese theme and listener friendly hooks. JR

MONDAY 2/28

ERIK FRIEDLANDER and THE TOPAZ QUARTET, SIR RICHARD BISHOP (Doug Fir Lounge, 830 E Burnside) Avant uber-cellist Erik Friedlander has, over the past decade or so, cemented his reputation as a supremely elastic and sensitive talent. A frequent member of John Zorn's company (as one third of the stunning Masada String Trio and in various other contexts) and leader of various small groups of his own, in recent years he has also lent his arco jelly to everyone from the Mountain Goats to Maxwell to Hole. Friedlander marries the deeply romantic and mournful qualities of the cello with bristling extended technique, and his Topaz quartet, featuring fraternal rhythm section Stomu and Satoshi Takeishi and saxophonist Andy Laster, restructure influences ranging from Indian Classical Music to Earth, Wind & Fire into sleek, bubbling future-jazz shapes. SAM MICKENS

PARTS AND LABOR, YUMA NORA, SECRET PUPPETS (Berbati's Pan, 10 SW 3rd) Stemming from the same Brooklyn rock underground as bands like Japanther, Oneida and Big A Little A, Parts and Labor are among the scene's most prolific--delivering a bundle of diverse releases over the last few years, while keeping up a taxing tour schedule. The three-piece's jabbing rhythms and sputtering electronic drones ride the fence between semi-anthemic hooks and spasmodic noise rock. They occasionally flounder, in a Sonic Youth B-sides album kind of way, but generally make up for it with their infectious energy. Yuma Nora's conceptual oscillator skronk and the Neo-Industrial histrionics of Secret Puppets round out the rest of tonight's bill nicely. JOSH BLANCHARD

TUESDAY 3/29

BEN LEE, HAR MAR SUPERSTAR, ZYKOS (Dante's, 1 SW 3rd) Ben Lee is, in a word, dreamy. And not just because of the big puppy dog eyes, goofy grin, and Australian accent. His earnest solo material is often so simple and unpretentious that after listening to his collection of songs, you feel like he's your new best friend. Warmly sung lyrics meet with gentle drumming, poppy accents, and the occasional tinkering piano, and while it sounds like your basic pop singer solo material, Lee's music is often delivered with a rare genuine warmth. And I'm not just saying that because I wanna make out with him. MEGAN SELING

THE BELLRAYS, VON IVA, ROCK N ROLL SOLDIERS (Doug Fir Lounge, 830 E Burnside) The BellRays have been leaving people gasping for ways to express devotion to their Maximum Rock 'n' Soul for so long now that it seems pointless to reiterate that this band is predictably astonishing. The Rock'n'Roll Soldiers are a bunch of drunken near-teenagers from Eugene whose fuzzy and flamboyant garage rock has recently appeared on the WB's One Tree Hill. When last I checked their website, they had their arms around some bunnies at the Playboy Mansion and looked happier than, well, drunken boys from Eugene with their arms around Playboy Bunnies. Yes, this is still cool. Come early and support your troops. KIP BERMAN

ZAO, THE JULIANA THEORY, OPEN HAND, SINAI BEACH, TAKEOVER (Solid State, 911 SE Pine) Zao sounds like a drunk old man karaoking metal songs (which could be awesome, but here it's terrible). Dude's voice is whiskey/cigarette-ruined and phlegmy while Dude Jr. sings pretty-voiced back-ups about his passion for the Christ. There's some cheesy nu-metal budda-budda-bud bass, lots of admittedly decent guitar, and enough Hot Topic spooky seriousness to make them the best band to ever tour through Traer, Iowa. (Besides Slipknot, which RULED Jay's Bar and Grill! Insert image of me pulling a dramatic wrestling pose.) BUT they are nowhere near as awful as the Juliana Theory, which is like cordless-headgear-mic-era Madonna singing about Jesus while harboring huge career-envy for homeboy that was in Sunny Day Real Estate. AG

WEDNESDAY 3/30

DEATH FROM ABOVE 1979, CONTROLLER, THE PLANET THE (Berbati's Pan, 10 SW 3rd) Dude, there will be two of us. But only one moustache. You'll be the one who sings even though you also play the drums. Death has got to be in the name. How about "Death From Above"? Maybe one of us will vaguely end up dating a celebrity's daughter. You're into early Sabbath right? Perfect. The guys, they won't notice that we're from Canada. We'll have the renting-a-loft-in-Red-Hook look about us, Sebastian. Wherever that is. The people at the label always say they're going to some party there. Oh yeah, and sometimes we'll sound like a 30-year-old metal band! But we'll also try to secretly sound as good as those early Elastica singles. And to really push it, all of this will happen ridiculously fast. People will roll their eyes. But the thing about is that our first record will be good. Like, Sabbath good. Like undeniably good. Seriously, man. Let's rage, Jesse. TREVOR KELLY

REVEREND HORTON HEAT, SUPERSUCKERS, I CAN LICK ANY SOB IN THE HOUSE (Roseland, 8 NW 6th) In the spirit of fading flame jobs and grease-soaked, perilously receding pompadours, the Rockabilly Revival's great white hope continues to chase the dream well after everyone else has already woken up. Then again, I'm not the one whose gonna be padding my comfortably stuffed pockets tonight playing "Bales of Cocaine" for the 700th time, while the good Rev's devoted pack out the Roseland. So I ask you, who's the sucker? ZP

SHONEN KNIFE, GORE GORE GIRLS, STORM & THE BALLS (Dante's, 1 SW 3rd) Sloppy Detroit garagesters the Gore Gore Girls have had more lineup changes since their '97 inception than your daddy baby's diaper. Today's GGG experience holds the same tattered, faux-glam Stooges goof motif as the band's earlier shows, except the quartet has morphed into something decidedly more Supersuckers and less Ronettes. Heavy-banged crooner Amy Gore remains the Girls' figurehead: kitschy and white-booted, she wields a Gretch White Falcon axe like Xena, but in a Troma film. Second guitarist Marlene Hammer supposedly did time in the clink, the unfortunately nicknamed drummer Nikki Styxx likes dog fights, and their thrasher bassist is simply called "The Deuce." What's great about seeing the Gore Gore Girls open for Shonen Knife, is that it's a night of f-u-n: Gore's songs are tough, but playful. JOAN HILLER

THESE ARMS ARE SNAKES, BIG BUSINESS, THE OXES (Solid State, 911 SE Pine) See "My, What a Busy Week"! Pg 23

XIU XIU, IDA, DEAD SCIENCE (Loveland, 320 SE 2nd Ave) See "My, What a Busy Week"! Pg 23

Comments

Subscribe to this thread:

Comments are closed.

From the Archives

Staff Pick Events

Most Commented On

Top Viewed Stories

All contents © Index Newspapers, LLC

115 SW Ash St. Suite 600
Portland, OR 97204

Contact Info | Privacy Policy | Production Guidelines | Terms of Use | Takedown Policy