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This Week's Music Previews

BLACK PRAIRIE Fri 5/2 Aladdin Theater

BLACK PRAIRIE Fri 5/2 Aladdin Theater

WEDNESDAY 4/30

WHITE FANG, MEAN JEANS, CHARTS
(Doug Fir, 830 E Burnside) See My, What a Busy Week!, and read our article on White Fang.

TINY MOVING PARTS, FRAMEWORKS, GATES, LEE COREY OSWALD
(Slabtown, 1033 NW 16th) See All-Ages Action!

THEE SILVER MT. ZION MEMORIAL ORCHESTRA, JHEREK BISCHOFF
(Mississippi Studios, 3939 N Mississippi) Thee Silver Mt. Zion's most recent album, Fuck Off Get Free We Pour Light on Everything, is a dagger aimed at the heart of the military-industrial complex and all the gnarled branches connected to its root. But as the title suggests, the Montreal-based collective's aim is to immerse its targets in positive energy, something akin to the Fugs and others trying to levitate the Pentagon in 1967 in opposition to the growing Vietnam conflict. Don't mistake that positivity for passivity, though. Fuck Off Get Free is downright vicious, a teeming mass of overdriven guitar and bass chords, hypnotic violin playing, and some potentially ground-shaking group singing. ROBERT HAM

MANCHESTER ORCHESTRA, BALANCE AND COMPOSURE, KEVIN DEVINE
(Roseland, 8 NW 6th) Andy Hull's metamorphosis from pudgy preacher's son to barrel-chested rock 'n' roll frontman has mirrored the very evolution of his band. Manchester Orchestra was once the sort of quaint group to emerge from the emo wreckage and title their 2007 debut record I'm Like a Virgin Losing a Child, but the Atlanta quintet have taken elephantine strides in the right direction in the years since, and now find themselves a bona-fide, arena-sized rock act. Their latest, Cope, unapologetically hammers this point home with lumbering guitar riffs and Hull's snarling delivery, which has confidently improved as of late. Cope's mammoth guitar heroics might be the recording's initial draw, but it's Hull that commandeers this vessel, with his keen ability to turn a phrase ("We all believed in ghosts until you walked into the wall") and transform into a rock 'n' roll deity before our very eyes. It's a sight to behold. EZRA ACE CARAEFF

PETER BUCK, SUPER-EARTH
(Secret Society, 116 NE Russell) Former R.E.M. guitarist Peter Buck is quietly living among us in Portland (he bounces between a few other cities as well). And he's quietly put out a couple of vinyl solo albums on local label Mississippi Records, too. You gotta love the fact that the same guy who played guitar in one of the biggest alternative bands in the world is still making music for the joy of it. Then again, it shouldn't be too surprising coming from a guy whose band did things on their own terms for three decades. This is the second of two shows at the Secret Society, with Super-Earth—Buck's new collaboration with Sleater-Kinney's Corin Tucker—opening. It's five bucks. You'd be crazy not to go. MARK LORE

THURSDAY 5/1

WARPAINT, JAMES SUPERCAVE
(Wonder Ballroom, 128 NE Russell) See My, What a Busy Week!

WE ARE SCIENTISTS, PAWS
(Doug Fir, 830 E Burnside) Read our article on PAWS.

JOHN RODERICK, SEAN NELSON
(Mississippi Studios, 3939 N Mississippi) It's been a long while since we've heard much of anything new from the Long Winters. The Seattle band led by John Roderick hasn't released a proper full-length since 2006, and the on-again, off-again status of a follow-up has left many wondering if the world will ever see another. Not that Roderick has been reclusive in Chinese Democracy limbo. The band still plays semi-regularly, and the interim has seen him morph into a kind of indie-pop distinguished man of letters, with the help of a weekly podcast and a notably entertaining Twitter feed (not to mention a snappy cardigan or two). The live show is still his forte, though—these days as much for the quick-witted commentary as for the back catalog of still great-sounding songs that continue to hold up, as anyone who packed into the Star Theater last December for a 10th anniversary run-through of When I Pretend to Fall can attest. Added bonus: Sean Nelson's part of the bill, too, and the musical and comic harmony between the pair never fails to deliver. JEREMY PETERSEN

MODEST MOUSE, SURVIVAL KNIFE
(Crystal Ballroom, 1332 W Burnside) Modest Mouse at the Crystal Ballroom is becoming one of the longer-running and more dependable musical traditions in Portland. Something about it just works; obviously the band is comfortable there, and the room offers some intimacy for a group that regularly plays much bigger venues. I remember seeing them there back in January of 2000. They were a bit different then, sure—a four-piece with no number-one records and only a single drummer (the rolling, inimitable Jeremiah Green). That leaner lineup allowed tempos room to ebb and flow and launch exuberant improvisations. Even in recent years, though, with their more arena-ready ensemble, Modest Mouse's sets engage longtime fans, constantly shuffling the deep deck of their catalog. Speaking of which, the band's last album came out way back in 2007. They've been hard at work on the follow-up. So the question is: In their hometown, will they share some of the new stuff? ANDREW R TONRY

FRIDAY 5/2

EAR CANDY: BOAT, THE COMETTES
(Mississippi Studios, 3939 N Mississippi) See My, What a Busy Week!

MODEST MOUSE, SURVIVAL KNIFE
(Crystal Ballroom, 1332 W Burnside) See Thursday's listing.

BLACK PRAIRIE, TIBURONES
(Aladdin Theater, 3017 SE Milwaukie) When Black Prairie began in 2007, they were the all-instrumental counterpart to the Decemberists, but the band's steady evolution and emerging autonomy is exciting to see unfold. While the band's debut, Feast of the Hunter's Moon, was largely a bluegrass affair, Black Prairie's lushly orchestrated Americana-pop on their fantastic new LP, Fortune, makes for an immediately likeable listen, with vocalist Annalisa Tornfelt's crisp voice slicing through hay-bale ditties like the feel-good "Kiss of Fate." The band's malleability is delivered through diverse instrumentation (dobro, accordion, mandolin, and more), and the band has the ability to shapeshift into driving rock 'n' roll hybrids relatively comfortably, as heard on the big boom of "Let It Out." Simply put, this could be Black Prairie's big breakout. RYAN J. PRADO

SATURDAY 5/3

PORTLAND CITY FAIR AND EXPOSITION: TYPHOON, BIG HAUNT, THE MORALS
(Mississippi Studios, 3939 N Mississippi) See My, What a Busy Week!

VIC BONDI, MILLIONS OF DEAD COPS, FLIGHT 19
(Laughing Horse Books, 12 NE 10th) See All-Ages Action!

PARADISE, THE UPSIDEDOWN, THE SUICIDE NOTES
(Doug Fir, 830 E Burnside) The garage-rockers of Paradise have studied their Nuggets anthologies carefully. The local group's buzzing, Farfisa-driven, amphetamine pop is firmly in the vein of the Chocolate Watchband and the 13th Floor Elevators, and they've even included a cover of Status Quo's classic "Pictures of Matchstick Men" on their second album, Soldiers of the Modern Age, for good measure. Tonight's the release party for Soldiers, a worthy platter of high-energy party punk beamed straight from an alternate-dimension 1960s. There's scarcely a weak track here, and tunes like "Just a Dream" boast ambitious songwriting within a familiar template that Paradise have managed to make sound fully vital and current. Amazingly, the album was recorded in a scant two days, so just think what they can do to your brain in the space of a 45-minute set. NED LANNAMANN

ULCERATE, RITUAL NECROMANCY, HEATHEN SHRINE, BASTARD FEAST
(Tonic Lounge, 3100 NE Sandy) Metal bands have received lots of attention in recent years for incorporating decidedly non-metal styles into their sound, often in favor of melody and at the expense of heaviness. This is not the model under which Ulcerate operates. The New Zealand death-metal band has been around since the turn of the century, but started rising in profile with the release of 2009's Everything Is Fire and 2011's The Destroyers of All, which moved Ulcerate away from shrieks and wails toward a more guttural sound. Then came last year's epic Vermis, an hour-long slab of monolithic tech-death marked by baleful blast beats, clangorous guitars, Paul Kelland's suffocating growl, and a relentless sense of dark, inexorable dread. Vermis feels like being forced into a body bag, zipped up, and tossed down a zig-zagging garbage chute. If that's your thing, it's glorious. BEN SALMON

BEARCUBBIN', MOON HONEY, ANIMAL EYES
(Bunk Bar, 1028 SE Water) Esteemed rock critic/virulent douche Robert Christgau once wrote that "virtuosos shouldn't show off—it's bad manners and bad art." He may as well have been referring to math rock, the most hopelessly masturbatory sub-genre in existence. Instrumental band Bearcubbin's latest full-length, Girls with Fun Haircuts (their first with bassist Patrick Dougherty, formerly of Soft Skills, whose contributions are nothing short of immense), is among the few exceptions to this rather unfortunate rule. Bearcubbin's previous efforts intimated varying degrees of potential, but not until now have they successfully been able to synthesize bona fide songwriting chops ("Master Cylinder," in particular, is catchy as fuck) and unavoidable fun with the genre's signature geometric, self-gratifying technicality—something very few of their peers even dare attempt. MORGAN TROPER

NILE, SEASON OF SUFFERING, WORLD OF LIES, GOATHEAD, NECRYPTIC
(Hawthorne Theatre, 1507 SE César E. Chávez) For two decades, Nile have churned out pummeling, densely packed death metal that's equal parts brutal and nerdy. With tightly wound technical riffs, none of it intended for the casual metal tourist, this is willfully difficult stuff. And there's the lyrical content, an obsession with ancient Egypt and Mesopotamian mythology that's provided fodder for seven full-lengths and spawned unwieldy titles like Amongst the Catacombs of Nephren-Ka and "Chapter of Obeisance Before Giving Breath to the Inert One in the Presence of the Crescent Shaped Horns." The South Carolina crew is still touring behind the heaving mass that is 2012's At the Gate of Sethu. MATTHEW W. SULLIVAN

FU MANCHU, ELECTRIC CITIZEN, SATYRESS
(Dante's, 350 W Burnside) All hail Fu Manchu! These dudes have been playing their somewhat sleazy but always heavy brand of catchy desert rock for 27 years now, influencing a generation of dirtbag stoners to tune low and play slow. It's nearly impossible not to have a great time at a Fu Manchu gig—that is, unless you're out of weed. And if that's the case, pretty sure someone in the crowd has you covered. KEVIN DIERS

C AVERAGE, LORD DYING, VANGUARD, ZIRAKZIGIL
(Rotture, 315 SE 3rd) With all the online chatter surrounding '90s-era rock band reunions, one such recombining that might get lost in Veruca Salt's wake is the return of Olympia-based metal duo C Average. Well, I call it a reunion, but it's not as if the band ever made an official statement of dissolution. Rather, guitarist Jon Merithew and drummer Brad Baisley just put it on the shelf for long stretches, stumbling back together every once in a while to peel a new coat of paint off the walls of the world. Their sludgy, smoldering sound is welcome back any time. RH

PDX PUNK FAMILY CIRCUS: BLACK AND WHITE, ROUGH KIDS, & MORE
(The Know, 2026 NE Alberta; Blackwater Records, 223 NE Russell; Club 21, 2035 NE Glisan) Forget the MusicfestNW announcement—here's a fest for the ages. The first-ever PDX Punk Family Circus gets its name from its supercool Moshburn-drawn flyer, which diagrams a path that begins at Northeast punk/metal sanctuary the Know for its first-ever matinee show (take that, stupid Alberta curfew), down to Blackwater Records for an early evening all-ages set, then over for a free final round at Club 21 that'll go until the wee hours. Japanese punk preservationists Black and White headline both the Know and Club 21 sets, with their steamrolling, bootstomping punk. LA's Rough Kids are also along for the ride, turning around sugar-laden melodies at breakneck paces. This will be a day (and night) to remember; better keep your Sunday morning plans to a minimum. NL

SUNDAY 5/4

RACHEL TAYLOR BROWN, LEIGH MARBLE
(Mississippi Studios, 3939 N Mississippi) Read our article on Rachel Taylor Brown.

GAYTHEIST
(Music Millennium, 3158 E Burnside) See All-Ages Action!

THE PAINS OF BEING PURE AT HEART, FEAR OF MEN, ABLEBODY
(Holocene, 1001 SE Morrison) "Alta," the first track on Fear of Men's Loom, is only 50 seconds long, but it plainly sets the tone for the English band's debut album: "We were born to name the beauty in this," Jess Weiss quietly sings, "in the hopelessness of always wishing for something else." From there, Fear of Men ramps up into a slightly more upbeat place, where dreamy twee, buoyant indie-pop, and low-key shoegaze mingle seamlessly, giving Weiss a glossy landscape in which to explore the cravings and the crumbles of human relationships. By the final track, "Atla," she's finally ready to move on. "If you never leave me I'll never understand you/'cause I'll never know what I could've been without you," she sings. Loom is the most delightful bummer of the year so far. BS Also see My, What a Busy Week!

RADIOACTIVITY, SUSPICIOUS BEASTS, THE ESTRANGED
(The Know, 2026 NE Alberta) Portland's the Estranged have been quietly honing their dark and moody take on post-punk for years, and the trio's new self-titled full-length is a perfect gateway if you've been sleeping on the band until now. It's an atmospheric and barbed collection of nine songs that's sonically expansive and dialed-in with a consistency from beginning to end. Meanwhile, Radioactivity is a brand-new garage-punk outfit of all-stars from the booming Denton, Texas, community. Fronted by the Marked Men's Jeff Burke and flanked by Bad Sports drummer Gregory Rutherford, guitarist Daniel Ford, and fellow Marked Man Mark Ryan on bass, the group delivers the overflowing pop-punk energy you'd expect from a group with that résumé. Their self-titled debut from last October picks up right where the Marked Men left off, and with a follow-up already on the way, Radioactivity should establish themselves as a power-pop force in no time. CHIPP TERWILLIGER

STEEL PANTHER, FUTURE VILLAINS
(Crystal Ballroom, 1332 W Burnside) It's important to have a sense of humor about yourself and the things you hold dear. However, if you plan on making a farce of something that people love, it should be done tastefully. For example, Spinal Tap is a timeless, brilliant ribbing of the music and culture of heavy metal. On the other hand, you have Los Angeles' Steel Panther, who need to learn a thing or two about subtlety. Take the lyrics from "Gloryhole," the third single from their most recent full-length, All You Can Eat: "I don't wanna know who's sucking my cock tonight/gonna blow my load at the glory hole." Metal and rock 'n' roll are rife with sex and drug references, but employing a simple literary device like the double entendre can go a long way. Musically, Steel Panther is quite skillful. Their emulation of '80s glam and hard rock is spot-on, but their stupid, sexist, homophobic lyrics certainly don't give this dog a bone. ARIS WALES

SENSORY: JAPPERWOCK, JONAS RAKE, ELECTROSECT, RUDEMENT
(Analog Café, 720 SE Hawthorne) Sensory puts together yet another great lineup of talented electronic musicians, this month featuring Electrosect (Patrick Haenelt) of Seattle. He's been honing his electro-inspired, cavernous dub for many years and his unique amalgam of styles is an intriguing treat for the heads. Haenelt has also been a long-time promoter of dance music events in Seattle and is one of the original members of Decibel Festival's event production team. He's had his hand in the Pacific Northwest's electronic music scene in one way or another for over a decade, capturing its essence and reflecting it through his own unique sound. CHRISTINA BROUSSARD

TODD SNIDER
(Doug Fir, 830 E Burnside) Portland is Todd Snider's original backyard. As a sharp satirist and stoner-lite Americana songwriter, his gritty, funny tunes have taken many forms; his between-song monologues are ripe for the page. In Snider's new book, I Never Met a Story I Didn't Like: Mostly True Tall Tales, his trials and tribulations are laid bare in memoir. He'll be thumbing through the book, reading passages, taking questions from the audience, and playing song requests. Snider's voice in his songs is already that of an anguished humorist; his new book is selling like hotcakes, which means he's probably equally as effective with the pen. RJP

NAILS, IRON LUNG, BONE SICKNESS, SKINFATHER
(Star Theater, 13 NW 6th) With two albums totaling 32 minutes across 10 tracks apiece, Nails aren't much for excess. The hardcore/grindcore wrecking crew didn't mess with the template on album number two, last year's Abandon All Life, which is full of savage beatdowns and chugging metallic hardcore condensed into high concentrations of ugliness. They're joined on this West Coast swing by Iron Lung, a duo with an equal affinity for lean, vitriolic hardcore, and they offer plenty of similarly noisy stuff on their own label, Iron Lung Recordings. Olympia-based crust punks Bone Sickness and the Swedish death metal-loving Skinfather round out the bill. MWS

MONDAY 5/5

CINCO DE MAYO: ORQUESTRA PACIFICO TROPICAL, MINDEN, EDNA VASQUEZ, MICHAEL BRUCE
(Holocene, 1001 SE Morrison) See My, What a Busy Week!

WELCOME TO DILLAVILLE: BIZARRE RIDE LIVE, SLUM VILLAGE, SERGE SEVERE, ELTON CRAY
(Hawthorne Theatre, 1507 SE César E. Chávez) Read our article on Welcome to Dillaville.

MONO, HELEN MONEY
(Doug Fir, 830 E Burnside) Tonight, Japanese instrumental rock group Mono brings its experimental and cinematic sounds to the basement of the Doug Fir. The band has been developing its emotive blend of classical composition and thundering noise since 1999. Along the way, they've built a reputation through the intense live atmosphere they create when they take the stage. While Mono has utilized string sections and expansive orchestras in recent outings, the band is more than capable of conjuring moving and dynamic moments as a quartet. Expect them to use this tour as an opportunity to unleash some new material in intimate settings. Be sure to arrive early to catch cellist and past Mono collaborator Alison Chesley, who performs under the stage name Helen Money. Chesley uses looping pedals and bridges a gap between classical and metal influences as she becomes an experimental force all her own in the live setting. CT

TUESDAY 5/6

RUSSIAN CIRCLES, WITCH MOUNTAIN, GAYTHEIST
(Mississippi Studios, 3939 N Mississippi) See My, What a Busy Week!

TEEN, KING FRIDAY
(Bunk Bar, 1028 SE Water) Teen—the Brooklyn quartet of namesake Teeny Lieberson (formerly of Here We Go Magic), her sisters Lizzie and Katherine, and new bassist Boshra AlSaadi—has a sound that currently falls somewhere along the lines of fellow East Coasters Joan as Policewoman and Luscious Jackson. They're not necessarily brand new to this, with two full-lengths and two EPs to their credit—yet their latest, The Way and Color, feels like a beginning of sorts. Gone is most of the haze and guitar swirl of their past work, replaced with a cleaner, more polished sound said to be inspired by the likes of Erykah Badu and D'Angelo. It's the kind of mainstream pop re-appropriation that isn't unheard of these days (see White Hinterland's new record), but it works well for Teen, most notably on cuts like "Rose for U" and "Tied Up Tied Down." JP

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