TU FAWNING, THE GOLDEN BEARS,
(Holocene, 1001 SE Morrison) See My, What a Busy Week!.
PETER BRODERICK, ETHAN ROSE
(Mississippi Studios, 3939 N Mississippi) With a freshly stamped passport, Peter Broderick returns home to Portland for an evening of sound collages, delicate ambient grace, and all sorts of other aural delights. When not doing his thing with recent Kill Rock Stars signees Horse Feathers, Broderick has been rolling through the mean streets of Denmark, touring with Danish band Efterklang, in addition to prepping his solo album Float, out in early '08 on UK label Type Records. Broderick's gorgeous, textural music sounds just as good here at home as it does in Copenhagen, and tonight's intimate show will be your first chance to get his new 7-inch, plus a mini-album of solo piano work, released by Swedish label Kning Disk. EZRA ACE CARAEFF
LIVE WIRE!: CHRIS WALLA, HOLCOMBE WALLER, JAMES BEATON,
RALPH HUNTLEY & THE MUTTON CHOPS
(Aladdin Theater, 3017 SE Milwaukie) See My, What a Busy Week!.
THE SODA POP KIDS, THE LUXURY SWEETS, THE GREATEST HITS,
(Satyricon, 125 NW 6th) See Music Feature.
THIS MOMENT IN BLACK HISTORY, STARANTULA, WHITE
(Slabtown, 1033 NW 16th) See Music Feature.
SHONEN KNIFE, THE JULIET DAGGER, VERONA
(Berbati's Pan, 10 SW 3rd) See Music Feature.
DAVID BAZAN, J. TILLMAN
(Mississippi Studios, 3939 N Mississippi) David Bazan sings with a tone that is distanced and impassioned, cynical and hopeful, and lost and seeking—all at the same time. While he was the one constant in the shifting lineups of Pedro the Lion, Bazan's solo work has already shown itself as something distinct from both that band, and his work with the keyboard-driven Headphones. His solo debut, the EP Fewer Moving Parts, was reissued by Barsuk earlier this year, and it offers up alternately electronic and acoustic versions of five songs, each boasting its own merits and showcasing a voice not content to rely on one given approach. In the album's accompanying artwork, Bazan carries an axe, which, at his best—as in the sprawling "Cold Beer and Cigarettes"—is a rough approximation of the emotional power he wields. TOBIAS CARROLL
ANCIENT AGE, DRUNK LADIES
(East End, 203 SE Grand) While Ancient Age has yet to record a note, the all-star "attack band"—featuring members of Red Fang, Portals, Swords (Project), Juanita Family—is gearing up for their second appearance. The first time around went swimmingly, as they loaded Ground Kontrol to the gills, forcing the venue to turn people away at the door (don't they have a bouncer with a Nintendo Power Glove to do that for them?). If you manage to squeeze inside the East End for this show, protect your fragile ears since Ancient Age are about as loud as they come. Hey kids, despite what these rock 'n' rollers say, tinnitus is totally not cool. EAC
GIRLS ROCK INSTITUTE SHOWCASE WITH SWAN
(AudioCinema, 226 SE Madison) In case you were unaware, the Girls Rock Institute (GRI) is an after-school program courtesy of the kindhearted folks at the Rock 'n' Roll Camp for Girls. Tonight's show will feature fresh bands that form from within the program, a silent auction (it is a nonprofit, after all), and a live set from the scorching rockers of Swan Island. You're busy, I know, but if you've never seen a showcase of these young bands (or a blaring set from Swan Island, for that matter), you need to be here tonight. These shows are downright inspiring, the perfect cure for the jadedness that comes with living in a city with a bit too much going on at any given time. EAC
COLLECTIVE SOUL, DAVID GRAY, KT TUNSTALL, BRANDI
(Roseland, 8 NW 6th) Roseland hosts this KINK-FM holiday benefit, a pop rock smorgasbord heavy on the pensive folkishness of TV soundtracks. Washington native Brandi Carlile and the rhythm-centered Scot KT Tunstall have both furnished songs for
Grey's Anatomy, with the terribly earnest David Gray handling go-to singer/songwriter duties for just about every other self-aware, hour-long television drama. Headlining holdovers from the '90s alt rock explosion, the ever-anthemic Collective Soul, epitomize the best and worst of the sing-along friendly bill. Still self-releasing their same brand of big alt rock, they can stimulate or bore, but the nostalgia of mid-'90s hits like "Shine," "December," and "The World I Know" are sure to dial up the feeling. JALYLAH BURRELL
TRACTOR OPERATOR, OH DARLING, THE
(Kelly's Olympian, 426 SW Washington) Much like Elizabeth Elmore (of '90s indie-popsters Sarge, or perhaps better known for her guest vocals on the Hold Steady's "Chillout Tent"), Jasmine Ash has the girliest of voices. It's a compliment, of course, as her vocal skills are not limited to what notes she can (and cannot) hit; instead, her voice feels downright sweet all the time, a breathy and innocent delivery that, when backed by the rest of her Oh Darling bandmates, delivers quite the punch. It's an interesting pairing alongside the slouched country drinking ballads of Tractor Operator, the solo project of one Eric Jensen. If Ash is all peppermints and gumdrops, Jensen is the polar opposite, a man who passes on the sweets altogether in favor of a nice, stiff drink to numb his very soul. EAC
DRAMADY, THE BUGS
(Kenton Club, 2025 N Kilpatrick) Congratulations go out to the talent-heavy duo of Amanda Mason Wiles (of Rollerball and Six Foot Sloth fame) and Zac Stanley (of Narwhal vs. Narwhal) who make up Dramady. The duo just released Better Forever, a well-balanced presentation of hook-heavy—yet still challenging—pop music. While pretty much every band (post-'90s) sounds like the Pixies, Dramady literally sounds like Black Francis & Co. Not a bad thing at all, as their inventive lyrics and unique instrumental structure tip their hat to their influences, yet are always individual enough so as to not confuse them with, say, Seattle's Pixies tribute act, No. 13 Baby. EAC
BLUE OCTOBER, THE BLAKES
(Crystal Ballroom, 1332 W Burnside) I won't name names, but a few years back I was at SXSW and stumbled into a free dinner alongside a friend who was an alternative radio tastemaker. The purpose of this ridiculous fancy dinner was for major label radio publicists to woo a few program directors and DJs into giving "spins" to their artists. While their aggressive pitches and complete lack of tact would make even the most accomplished Amway reps blush, it worked, as the band they were peddling that evening was none other than Blue October. Sure enough, a few months later, this limp, soulless, alt-rock monstrosity had a universal hit with "Into the Ocean." It's not the band who is the problem here—as they are little more than a modern Crash Test Dummies, a rock novelty act whose success can be attributed to backroom dealings and expense account dinners—but just the idea that so many people devote their day-to-day to peddling such mediocrity. But at least I got a free meal out of it. Thanks Blue October. You'll have to recoup that dinner, but my risotto really was quite splendid. EAC
THE BLOW, SWAN ISLAND
(Doug Fir, 830 E Burnside) See My, What a Busy Week!.
PIERCED ARROWS, OBLIVION SEEKERS, SLEEPWALKERS
(Twilight Café and Bar, 1420 SE Powell) While many feared that the last shows of Dead Moon marked the end of an era and the finale for one of Portland's greatest contributions to rock history, it didn't take long for Toody and Fred Cole to grow restless and pick up pretty much where they left off with Pierced Arrows. The only difference is drummer Kelly Halliburton, so the fuzzed-out guitar bass combo of the Coles remains in full effect as they trade vocals over twisted squalls of dirty, psyched-out garage rock. Led by Mark Sten—he of omnipresent sunglasses, cowboy boots, and leather vest—and utilizing a rotating cast of pedigreed misfits, the Oblivion Seekers (now in at least their second decade) are a perfect complement on this bill, bringing a sleazed-out, pill-popping intensity to their rockabilly revue. KEVIN FRIEDMAN
DAMIEN JURADO, TENLONS FORT
(Mississippi Studios, 3939 N Mississippi) Whether exploring the darkest elements of human nature or working out a handful of Nick Drake covers, Damien Jurado's voice and style are hard to mistake. Since '97, Jurado has released a slew of solid albums, the most recent of which is last year's And Now That I'm Your Shadow. His songs move from lush to stark, from electrically charged to gently strummed, as he provides windows into lives alternatively unfulfilled and rewarding, both brutal and pastoral. Live, Jurado pushes these songs in new directions, finding new emotional avenues with which he can explore his characters' lives, flaws, and redemption. At his best, he's a gripping presence onstage, inhabiting a dozen narrators and taking full control of your attention throughout. TC
OFFICE, TIGER CITY, VIA AUDIO
(Towne Lounge, 714 SW 20th Pl) Remember when the term "indie rock" actually, you know, meant something? Back when it could be used to describe an actual musical style and wasn't just a generic blanket term popularized by Seth Cohen? Well, New York's Via Audio does. Listening to their latest album, saysomethingsaysomethingsaysomething, it's almost as though it's still '01, with Death Cab and Rilo Kiley (when they were both technically "indie") being the hip bands to namedrop. Their co-ed vocals aren't played out, their airy guitar is quite pleasant, and their harmonies sound alive and refreshing. Sure, it's been done a lot in the past five years, but somehow Via Audio make it all incredibly exciting again, which, in the currently over-saturated market, is nothing short of impressive. ROB SIMONSEN
QUIVAH, COMMENTER-E, DJ M RON,
(Berbati's Pan, 10 SW 3rd) Not content with just a simple CD release party, Quivah aims high as they are set to throw it down in honor of their brand new self-titled double disc. The first disc features the full seven-piece band, bumping conscious hiphop in the raw, without studio gimmicks or an overabundance of samples. Disc number two is for the people, as the band turned their material over to local musicians to have a crack at remixing the goods. Don't hate on them for the ambitious undertaking, especially when you hear the dooming "Funnel Web," punctuated by the mic-sharing interplay of Qutinuum and Silent E, and capped off with a dirty guitar hook and some needle-damaging deep scratches courtesy of DJ Papercuts. EAC
SPOON, THE SHAKY HANDS
(Crystal Ballroom, 1332 W Burnside) How nice to say that two awesome local bands play tonight at the Crystal Ballroom. Can I say "local" now that Spoon's Britt Daniel lives in town, even though the band spent the first 13 years of its existence in Austin and with their current schedule he probably spends approximately one-fifteenth of his time actually in the Portland area? Probably not, but I will anyway. The thing I like about Spoon is that no matter how many Jaguar commercials their music shows up in, their sound remains as gritty and sparse as ever. The newest one, Ga Ga Ga Ga Ga, is one of their rawest yet, with mistakes and in-studio chatter even making the final cut. I love it. (By the way, this show's been sold out since, like, 2003.) JUSTIN W. SANDERS
THE BLASTERS, ALL-AMERICAN PLAYBOYS
(Dante's, 1 SW 3rd) The Blasters somehow managed to fit cohesively into Los Angeles' late-'70s/early-'80s club scene, sharing many a stage (and later, guitarist Dave Alvin) with the seminal West Coast punk band X, among countless others. While never punk, their twanged-out rockabilly and rootsy American rock provide a perfect soundtrack for hard drinking, working, and driving. So in that light, it's not hard to see the connection. Guitarist Dave Alvin has moved on but his brother Phil still mans the mic with his Buddy Holly-meets-the-Big Bopper vocals. Newcomers the All-American Playboys mine the same ground, albeit somewhat late to the table. Their lack of innovation is compensated by high energy and efficient musicianship. They should get the job done until the booze, and the real deal, kicks in. KF
LOU THOMAS BENEFIT: MODERNSTATE, AUTOPILOT IS FOR LOVERS,
(Holocene, 1001 SE Morrison) See My, What a Busy Week!.
AMON AMARTH, HIMSA, SONIC SYNDICATE,
(Hawthorne Theatre, 1507 SE 39th) Amon Amarth comes from the suburbs of Stockholm. Their music is utterly derived from classic Swedish death metal, with crunching metal guitars, double bass drumming, and bloody throated Viking growls. But it is the suburban influence that adds the melody, the image, and the business savvy that make Amon Amarth almost more of a product than a band. It's a quality product—the songs are catchy, well produced, heavy, and triumphant. The album art depicts plenty of rings and runes and hammers and glowing fonts that look like they were freshly forged. What Dragonforce do for power metal and Cradle of Filth do for black metal, Amon Amarth accomplishes in the field of Viking death metal. All hail Odin and the almighty Krona! (Special shout out to Decapitated who were supposed to be on this tour until their bus rolled. Members died. R.I.P.) NATHAN CARSON
QUEENS OF THE STONE AGE, JAGUAR LOVE
(Roseland, 8 NW 6th) Josh Homme seems to have a plan. His rise out of stoner legends Kyuss into the heavy robotic pop rock of Queens of the Stone Age wasn't exactly meteoric. But step by step, member by member, Homme has forged the band into a rock-radio staple, and an all-too-rare example of what can happen when a good songwriter is allowed full exposure by corporate media. From this vantage point he can clearly see bands like Radiohead and Nine Inch Nails getting out of their old contracts, and self-releasing their own massively popular records. So of course Homme wants in on that action. And honestly, whether it's contrived or not, it's a pretty good plan. It's a two-pronged assault. Part one: Make a bunch of good records with great singles. Part two: Publicly slander Interscope Records (which he recently did). If he pulls this off and gets dropped, I will be the first to confer upon Homme the title of "rock 'n' roll genius." NC
HOLCOMBE WALLER & THE HEALERS, CHRIS
(Doug Fir, 830 E Burnside) See Music Feature.
AMP BENEFIT: DIRTY MITTENS, BROTHER JOSEPH, SLAM DUNK,
DAVIS HOOKER, THE KILL JOHN HENRY, SHEETS, BELUGA WHALE, AND
(Satyricon, 125 NW 6th) See My, What a Busy Week!.
(Mission Theater, 1624 NW Glisan) After suffering through The Brown Bunny for the disappointing payoff of laying eyes upon Vincent Gallo's erect cock (and its interaction with Chloë Sevigny's mouth), I swore off Gallo for good. Auctioning himself on eBay, those weird conservative rants, and the fact that it's been a long time since "Prince Vince" or Buffalo 66, demonstrate that with each passing day, Gallo is getting all the more irrelevant. But—and deep down my instincts scream out against it—RRIICCEE seems like it might be worthwhile. The "spontaneous collective" of Gallo and Eric Erlandson (from Hole, and his role as Drew Barrymore's token alt rock arm candy in the '90s) will never record an album, instead it's all improvisational jams limited to no set genres or prerecorded pieces. Genius? Train wreck? Regardless, Gallo better be prepared to whip it out at the end of the show, just in case. EAC