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This Week's Music Previews

WAXAHATCHEE Sat 11/30 Holocene

WAXAHATCHEE Sat 11/30 Holocene

WEDNESDAY 11/27

NORFOLK AND WESTERN, 1939 ENSEMBLE, DARREN HANLON
(Doug Fir, 830 E Burnside) See My, What a Busy Week!

JON HOPKINS, CLARK, NATHAN FAKE
(Rotture, 315 SE 3rd) In a year that has been filled with amazing electronic music releases, saying that Jon Hopkins' fifth full-length Immunity stands head and shoulders above the rest is the highest compliment I can give. Nominated for this year's Mercury Prize in the UK, the album is a full hour of techno mastery, cut through with humanizing warmth thanks to Hopkins' reliance on ballooning, dusk-colored synth tones and the use of fine vocal turns from Scottish folk singer King Creosote and young jazz artist Emma Smith. Hopkins is joined by another of 2013's electronic delights, fellow UK electronic producer Clark, whose recent LP Feast/Beast is a wonder of supple basslines, clatter-happy beats, and experimental leanings. ROBERT HAM

THURSDAY 11/28

JIVE TURKEY DANCE PARTY
(The Spare Room, 4830 NE 42nd) See My, What a Busy Week!

FRIDAY 11/29

BLITZEN TRAPPER, ALIALUJAH CHOIR
(Doug Fir, 830 E Burnside) Read our article on Blitzen Trapper.

PEARL JAM, MUDHONEY
(Moda Center, 1 Center Ct) Read our Debate Club on Pearl Jam.

CAT POWER, NICO TURNER
(Hawthorne Theatre, 1507 SE César E. Chávez) See My, What a Busy Week!

LORD DYING, ANCIIENTS, NETHER REGIONS, SIOUX
(Analog Café, 720 SE Hawthorne) Friday night at the Analog Cafe, before local heroes Lord Dying bludgeon your skull with some stoney sludge, take flight over the verdant Cascadian landscape with Anciients. The Vancouver, BC, quartet's combo of heavy prog and soaring pop-metal is both impressive and accessible; their debut album Heart of Oak is a dizzying display of technical chops—zigzag rhythms, skyscraping guitar solos, harmonies galore—and powerful, primal riffs and growls. It's like listening to Mastodon find its footing on their debut album, Remission, and you know what happened next with them. If this all sounds appealing, don't skip this show, because it would surprise exactly no one if Anciients headline much bigger rooms in a year or two. BEN SALMON

TYPHOON, WILD ONES, LAKE
(Crystal Ballroom, 1332 W Burnside) No two ways about it: The release of this year's White Lighter was in every way a triumph for Portland conglomerate Typhoon. Frontman Kyle Morton's obsessions with mortality are given sweeping, gorgeous arrangements that explode with vibrant horns, delicate acoustic guitars, loud gang vocals, and ambitious orchestration. It's the kind of record so affecting as to place itself immediately among the best Portland releases of the year. After a couple of reportedly breathtaking MusicfestNW performances a few months ago in the cozy confines of the Old Church, Typhoon docks into the cavernous Crystal Ballroom headlining a raucous evening of all-Northwest collectives. RYAN J. PRADO

MOON MIRROR, VIRGIN BLOOD
(The Lovecraft, 421 SE Grand) Cosplay will be in full effect for both audience and performers at tonight's Lovecraft gathering. Moon Mirror has manifested her ephemeral, anime-caricature social media presence into a stage persona that's part Sailor Moon, part Enya—a one-woman siren of the cosmos. Her latest album on the Aural Sects label, Transference, is a fantastical domain of upbeat synth-pop, with dynamic arpeggios and drum machines beating bewitching dance grooves. The darkly emotive Virgin Blood's heavy synth drones backdrop loftily romantic vocals that are eerily evocative of the late Trish Keenan from Broadcast. Expect a wide range of emojis for this free showcase of Portland's new-age beatific songcraft. WYATT SCHAFFNER

THE CAVE SINGERS, POLLENS
(Mississippi Studios, 3939 N Mississippi) Borrowing from African trance and choral music, Pollens take six voices and stack, blend, layer, split, and roll them into sneaky arrangements. Those delicate layers are accompanied by sparse instrumentation that plucks inspiration from the Near East, while also dabbling in prog-rock, folk, and jazz. Somehow, none of it sounds piecemeal or out of place. They open for fellow Seattleites the Cave Singers, whose latest, Naomi, finds the rockers-turned-folkies moving a little further away from the front-porch stomp of previous records and into lusher, more dynamic sounds. The Cave Singers also welcomed Fleet Foxes bassist Morgan Henderson into the fold, who recorded Pollens' debut EP back in 2011. MATTHEW W. SULLIVAN

THE DICKIES, THE MEAN JEANS, THE DECLINERS, RUFF HAUSEN
(Tonic Lounge, 3100 NE Sandy) The Dickies have been blasting brain-dead party punk since the very beginning. Popping off as LA's cross-eyed answer to the Ramones, the gleeful idiots put out stacks of records, every song a cheeky single, and in their wake inspired a generation of scruffy punks like Screeching Weasel, Green Day, and NOFX. Around the turn of the millennium, the Dickies mostly curtailed new releases, and shows are becoming more sporadic. Since forming in that fateful year of 1977 they've had 19 different members, four of whom have died, some while partying. Still, the remaining Dickies know there's one thing punks never do: stop partying. It's a lesson that local macaronis the Mean Jeans have taken straight to the dome. It's wild, really, the legacy of this lineup. The kids will be rocking this shit when granddad and his buds show up after slamming 50 beers, axes in hand, ready to shred. ANDREW R TONRY

SATURDAY 11/30

VILLAGE PEOPLE, ANCIENT HEAT
(Crystal Ballroom, 1332 W Burnside) See My, What a Busy Week!

BLITZEN TRAPPER, THE WOOLEN MEN (EARLY SHOW);
BLITZEN TRAPPER, THE PARSON RED HEADS (LATE SHOW)

(Doug Fir, 830 E Burnside) Read our article on Blitzen Trapper.

WAXAHATCHEE, SWEARIN' (EARLY SHOW)
(Holocene, 1001 SE Morrison) NYC-based band Swearin' have evolved into a three-headed hydra on their newly released LP, Surfing Strange. Sure, Allison Crutchfield (twin sister of Katie Crutchfield, whose band Waxahatchee also plays tonight) continues to write some of the best heart-on-sleeve rock songs going, but that's only the tip of the iceberg here. Swearin' guitarist Kyle Gilbride and bassist Keith Spencer both take turns at the lead on Surfing Strange, and it's this songwriting depth that sets Swearin' apart from their peers. Gilbride, specifically, continues to display his Midas touch within the realm of '90s-sounding indie-rock. Earlier this year he lent a guitar solo to the excellent Radiator Hospital track "Your Boyfriend" that was straight up Mascis-esque, and his latest Swearin' contributions take it to another level. When the tight-knit ensemble combines forces, expect to witness some of the most honest and heartfelt music being played today. CHIPP TERWILLIGER Also see My, What a Busy Week!

SOFT METALS, NATHAN DETROIT, NATURAL MAGIC (LATE SHOW)
(Holocene, 1001 SE Morrison) If you like classic, traditional synth pop, Portland's Soft Metals—vocalist/keyboardist Patricia Hall and synthesist/programmer/drum-machine operator Ian Hicks—should hit your sweet spot right in the bull's eye. Hall coos with dulcet placidity over midtempo beats and swirling, expansive synths that make you want to get in romantic entanglements in European cities whose names you mispronounce. Their latest album, the sleekly beautiful Lenses, whisks you away to a glamorous rendezvous or five. DAVE SEGAL

MENOMENA, BRAINSTORM, GALLONS
(Wonder Ballroom, 128 NE Russell) Stretching back to the days of I Am the Fun Blame Monster, Menomena—originally the trio of Justin Harris, Danny Seim, and Brent Knopf—quickly rose through the ranks to become one of Portland's most intriguing and well-regarded bands. They've steadily earned their keep maintaining that spot ever since. Following Knopf's departure, 2012's Moms was alternately playful and elegiac, continuing to offer inventive and original variations on indie-rock sounds—no easy feat. Now Harris and Seim are augmented by Matt Dabrowiak and Dave Depper, and this particular quartet plays their first Portland show ever (barring this summer's 8-Track Relay event that you almost certainly didn't go to). It may also be their last, at least for a while; Menomena currently has no other dates scheduled, and will either be taking time off or, hopefully, starting to tinker on new material. NED LANNAMANN

BUBBLIN': OM UNIT, TIGERFRESH, BEN TACTIC, LINCOLNUP, PHILIP GRASS
(The Rose, 111 SW Ash) Effortlessly blending jungle, drum and bass, dub, and hiphop to create a distinct sound, UK-based Om Unit (Jim Coles) has been beckoning electronic music enthusiasts to the vortex of where these genres meet for several years, garnering high praise along the way. Coles constructs a fascinating form of bass-heavy, science-fiction-infused sound, squeezing an astonishing amount of intricacy into the sonic space of his compositions while still allowing each one to breathe with a zen-like quality. His latest release, Threads, weaves vocal samples into breaks with a smoky intensity equally befitting a dance floor or headphone commute. CHRISTINA BROUSSARD

NOBLE FIRS, HUSTLE AND DRONE, PONY VILLAGE
(Firkin Tavern, 1937 SE 11th) Saturday nights at Southeast dive Firkin Tavern have quietly become a go-to haunt for free tunes from bands of all stripes and sonic territories. This weekend's bill is no slouch itself, boasting a gratis triple threat that'd draw heads anywhere else in town. Noble Firs are releasing their debut LP, Rockoon, a brisk snapshot of elemental pop weirdness with lots of harmonies and layered guitar interplay. Hints of the sort of technically proficient terrain that Minus the Bear might tackle permeate songs like "Boy in a Man Suit," and show fairly daring abandon that eludes concise descriptors. Hustle and Drone's psych-electro sermons and Pony Village's tightly wound indie-pop round out an eclectic evening at the frickin' Firkin. RJP

MARISA ANDERSON, PLANKTON WAT, ECSTATIC COSMIC UNION
(Little Axe Records, 5012 NE 28th) The resurgence of John Fahey/American Primitive-style solo guitarists over the last few years has provided fans of the folk/blues idiom with a surfeit of new music to revel in. We are lucky to have two of the best instrumentalists of this ilk living in our fair city, and they both play tonight at Little Axe Records. Marisa Anderson has just returned from a tour in support of her brilliant 2013 LP Mercury, which finds her trading in both reverb-heavy strutting and chilling acoustic-guitar reserve. A similar mood runs through the work of Plankton Wat, the musical moniker of former Eternal Tapestry member Dewey Mahood. His most recent LP, Drifter's Temple, wends in his long interest in psychedelia and the occasional excursion into much noisier territory. RH

TONY FURTADO, RUTH MOODY BAND, DIRTY MARTINI
(Mississippi Studios, 3939 N Mississippi) As far as Portland's bluegrass/folk scene is concerned, few can beat out Tony Furtado in career longevity and skills. Furtado won banjo competitions as a child, and it shows in his detailed finger-picking. He sings, plays guitar, and is considered a "multi-genre artist," but is clearly a bluegrass banjo aficionado. Since the start of his career in 1992, Furtado has toured extensively, released 15 albums, and played with Alison Krauss and other folk musicians you probably haven't heard of unless you watch Oregon Art Beat and wear fleece. Though this style of music could easily fit into a granola commercial, there's no denying his clear dedication and talent. ROSE FINN

IAMSU!, SAGE THE GEMINI, CHAMPAGNE JAMES, MIKEY VEGAZ, FLIBOE MOE
(Roseland, 8 NW 6th) It's been a big year for both Iamsu! and Sage the Gemini. The two young Bay Area rappers are on the verge. Together they scored a hit with "Gas Pedal," a blunt-smoking, skeletal, slithering strip club anthem. Gemini netted another with the similarly bumping, minimal, more melodic but equally salacious "Red Nose." Iamsu!, meanwhile, released a mixtape of his own and a second in collaboration with Problem, another up-and-coming West Coast G on a hot streak. For both Iamsu! and Sage, major label debuts and more national success apparently loom in 2014—just so long as they can keep the pedal down. Should they need advice, inspiration, or a lesson on work ethic, they need not look far, as the godfather of hyphy, E-40, is just around the block. ART

SUNDAY 12/1

FRED AND TOODY, JENNY DON'T AND THE SPURS
(LaurelThirst Public House, 2958 NE Glisan) See My, What a Busy Week!

THERE IS NO MOUNTAIN
(Al's Den, 303 SW 12th) After a few years co-piloting the Portland-based, banjo-powered roots-pop band the Ascetic Junkies, married couple Matt Harmon and Kali Giaritta pared down to a duo in 2012, started DIY touring like crazy, and changed their name to There Is No Mountain. Somewhere in there, they also found time to record the band's self-titled debut, a seamless amalgam of psychedelic folk, effervescent indie pop, global (particularly African) sounds, and harmonies bound 'til death do they part. With much of their 2013 spent on stages and surfing couches across the country, Harmon and Giaritta are sticking close to home for a bit—at least long enough to play a weeklong residency at Al's Den. BS

THE NEIGHBOURHOOD, GHOST LOFT
(Crystal Ballroom, 1332 W Burnside) Despite the superfluous "u," the Neighbourhood aren't a cheeky British rock band, but rather a cute, cuddly, and nondescript group of American white guys. Their music is nondescript as well... unless, maybe, you're a 13-year-old kid from the suburbs. I crawled out of my hole long enough to check out the LA band's hit "Sweater Weather," before retreating and fighting the urge to stock up on guns and canned peaches. Perhaps there's more to their debut, I Love You, than that Maroon 5-meets-Linkin Bizkit-y single. But I doubt it. Even if you are a 13-year-old kid from the suburbs, you don't have to resort to this. MARK LORE

BLACK JOE LEWIS AND THE HONEYBEARS, RADKEY
(Wonder Ballroom, 128 NE Russell) Black Joe Lewis' larynx must be hewn from the same material used to make an airplane's black box, because how else could he possibly howl like he does? I guess we won't know until he crashes, which is not likely to occur anytime soon. In fact, he only seems to be gaining speed with his and the Honeybears' latest album, Electric Slave. If 2011's Scandalous swayed to its own soul-induced funk, Electric Slave leans hard into full-out rock 'n' roll. Driving, fuzzed-out guitars, frantic low-ends, and a positively wailing saxophone lift Lewis' voice on their storm surge—and sometimes, when he reaches a song's crest and can see everything clearly, all he can yell is "Fuck this shit!" (as heard in "The Hipster"). A relatable sentiment, indeed. RAQUEL NASSER

MONDAY 12/2

YOUTHBITCH, PISS TEST
(Lola's Room, 1332 W Burnside) See My, What a Busy Week!

THERE IS NO MOUNTAIN
(Al's Den, 303 SW 12th) See Sunday's listing.

BRENDAN CANNING, HOLLY MIRANDA, GONDOLA
(Mississippi Studios, 3939 N Mississippi) A visit from Broken Social Scene doesn't look like it's coming anytime soon, so how about a set by one of the band's figureheads? Brendan Canning just released his second solo record, You Gots 2 Chill, and this time the Social Scener eschews much of his band's genre-jumping and grand orchestrations in favor of understated, laid-back bedroom-pop. The tracks are built on melodic, finger-picked guitar lines that would never exist in such an unadorned state with BSS, but Canning makes the most of the barebones songs, borrowing a fair bit from guitarist John Fahey, even acknowledging as much with album opener "Post Fahey." MWS

TUESDAY 12/3

KATHLEEN KEOGH BENEFIT
(Holocene, 1001 SE Morrison) See My, What a Busy Week!

THERE IS NO MOUNTAIN
(Al's Den, 303 SW 12th) See Sunday's listing.

DRAKE, MIGUEL, FUTURE
(Moda Center, 1 Center Ct) Read our article on Drake, Miguel, and Future.

PORTUGAL. THE MAN, SONS OF HUNS, HUSTLE AND DRONE
(Doug Fir, 830 E Burnside) Portugal. The Man has been touring nonstop to support their album-a-year habit; after six, you'd think they'd seek respite in something familiar. Instead, the Portland-based, Alaskan-bred band harnessed all their ambitions and set out for new territory with their seventh record, Evil Friends. To aid in this journey, frontman John Gourley enlisted producer Bryan Burton—that's Mr. Danger Mouse to you—and with his help, they cultivated a impassioned, genre-bending beast that seems to morph between each track. Evil Friends also displays a maturing band's ability to rein in their completely contagious (but sometimes unwieldy) adrenaline-fueled rock. Whether ebbing from solemn acoustic plucking to bombastic baselines to charged, apathetic punk, the album is somehow streamlined in the senses and altogether registers as pure fun. Tonight's the third in Red Bull's series of three-dollar shows at the Doug Fir, although you'll need to RSVP at redbullsoundselect.com to get in the door. RN

ADVENTURE CLUB, DALLAS K, HUNTER SIEGEL
(Roseland, 8 NW 6th) If you have a penchant for Québécois EDM duos with dubsteppy beats, you're going to wet your knickers over Adventure Club. After getting tired of playing pop punk in high school, Christian Srigley and Leighton James decided to pursue the world of EDM. The two now play major electronic music festivals all over the world. Their signature style generally includes female vocals, videogame-style sounds, and the classic dubstep drop beats. As with a lot of EDM, they don't really do albums, and that's just as well—Adventure Club is probably best experienced live, while dancing trippy-dippy style, with some sort of intoxicant involved. RF

SUICIDAL TENDENCIES, TERROR, TRASH TALK, INSPECTOR CLUZO
(Wonder Ballroom, 128 NE Russell) Mike Muir is the lone pissed-off remnant of Suicidal Tendencies. Waaaaay back in 1981 they were a hardcore punk band, and Muir's sharp-tongued, introspective lyrics were funny, sardonic, and, of course, angry. After the release of their classic 1983 self-titled debut, the lineup shifted and Suicidal Tendencies began incorporating elements of thrash and speed metal. But unlike most of the furrowed-brow set, Muir & Co. kept their sense of humor, albeit a dark one. Three decades later and Muir and his crew are still at it, still pissed, still releasing records. It may sound dated to some, but everything is cyclical, as they say. And the very fact that these street punks have hardly budged over the course of three decades speaks volumes—at high volume. ML

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