EIDOLONS Wed 7/30 Mississippi Studios

WEDNESDAY 7/30

DAVID KILGOUR AND THE HEAVY EIGHTS, THE SHIFTING SANDS
(Bunk Bar, 1028 SE Water) Read our article on David Kilgour and the Heavy Eights.

IN SCHOOL, DEFECT DEFECT, THE STOPS, MALADJUSTED
(Laughing Horse Books, 12 NE 10th) See All-Ages Action!

WOLFMOTHER, ELECTRIC CITIZEN, SONS OF HUNS
(Roseland, 8 NW 6th) Part of what allowed Wolfmother's 2005 self-titled debut to catch fire was that rock music was in a pretty shabby state at the time—that and the fact that it really is a wicked-solid rock record. Since rock has righted itself, main man Andrew Stockdale has had a tough go of it. After album number two bit the dust, he dismantled the band for five years before returning earlier this year with the self-released New Crown. It righteously rocks, but it's so far failed to meet many ears, which is weird considering how many bands out there are finding success aping the same stuff Wolfmother apes. In a weird way, nine years feels like a longer time ago than the era Stockdale pulls from. I bet he'd agree. MARK LORE

EIDOLONS, ANIMAL EYES, TALKATIVE
(Mississippi Studios, 3939 N Mississippi) The shift from tension to resolution characterizes virtually every piece of music you've ever listened to, but Portland band Eidolons are more upfront about that shift than most guitar-wielding indie-rock bands. The group releases two EPs tonight in place of the expected full-length, and the band spikes some very pleasing sounds with large swaths of dissonance, subverting your ears' expectations with surprising twists and turns. The result is a record—excuse me, pair of records that sound more interesting and involving each time you listen. In fact, one could argue that Eidolons' method of splitting their 13 new tunes over two releases is an extension of the tension-vs.-release thesis. The Big Yellow Shirt collects the wirier, rockier songs, echoing Pavement, Television, and the Fall, while Hard Hang in a Deep Country is twangier and looser, ornamented with syrup-sweet pedal steel guitar. But Eidolons is no two-trick pony; these EPs evidence an aptitude for uncovering new songwriting territory as well as a sound that's unlike any other band in town. NED LANNAMANN

CUT HANDS, SWEET TOOTH, LADYWOLF
(East End, 203 SE Grand) As the main provocateur behind Whitehouse, William Bennett has wielded enormous influence over noise music. Every cassette-peddling power electronics project owes a debt to his taboo-embracing catalog, but these days he's releasing records as Cut Hands and trading piercing feedback and shrill wailing for what he calls "Afro noise." The first Cut Hands releases maintained some of the more aggressive sounds of Whitehouse, infusing them with Afrobeat rhythms, but as the project has evolved, the edges have smoothed. After spending 30 years churning out extreme noise, this is probably the weirdest thing Bennett could be making—music that's warm and inviting. MATTHEW W. SULLIVAN

LUCINDA WILLIAMS, GERALD COLLIER
(Oregon Zoo, 4001 SW Canyon) On September 30, the great American songwriter Lucinda Williams will release her 11th album, Down Where the Spirit Meets the Bone, and it is highly likely that fans at tonight's zoo show will be treated to a few highlights from this forthcoming release. It's also likely that Williams will ravish the crowd with the songs with which she's been ravishing crowds for the past 25 years. The Lucinda Williams Songbook is loaded with many of the best-songs-ever, including but not limited to the best-song-ever about processing a loved one's suicide ("Sweet Old World"), the best-song-ever about needing physical distance from someone you can't live without ("Side of the Road"), the best-song-ever about missing someone while touching yourself ("Right in Time"), and the best-ever use of the past tense in a pop song ("Metal Firecracker"). DAVID SCHMADER

MINIATURE TIGERS, THE GRISWOLDS, FINISH TICKET, YOUNG RISING SONS
(Holocene, 1001 SE Morrison) The first time I saw and heard Brooklyn's Miniature Tigers, I wasn't sure if it was a joke or a real thing. The joke was on me. Publications and blogs have been singing the band's praises for their catchy and quirky synth-pop tunes. I will give them that: Miniature Tigers' latest LP, Cruel Runnings, is catchy and quirky, but it's catchy to the point where you have to wonder if these four baby-faced lads aren't better suited to write commercial jingles. They'd sell the shit out of some acne cream. ML

THURSDAY 7/31

NERD NIGHT OUT: SARAH DONNER, THE DOUBLECLICKS
(Brody Theater, 16 NW Broadway) See My, What a Busy Week!, and All-Ages Action!

SUNDOWN AT ECOTRUST: ALELA DIANE, LOST LANDER
(Jean Vollum Natural Capital Center, 721 NW 9th) See My, What a Busy Week!

TYCHO, CHRISTOPHER WILLITS
(Crystal Ballroom, 1332 W Burnside) Scott Hansen is a photographer and designer in addition to being a musician, so it's no surprise that his primary sonic vehicle, Tycho, has always been presented in a tidy, thoughtful aesthetic package. Never has that been more true than on Tycho's 2014 album Awake, a seamless slice of pop-ambient perfection that lives somewhere between the tireless motorik pace of post-rock powerhouse Maserati and the expansive, glitchy haze of electro-pop wizards like Washed Out and Ulrich Schnauss. Awake is a portal into another world where an evening spent watching the sunset and then staring at the stars comes with its own built-in soundtrack. It is beautiful and melancholy. But mostly beautiful. BEN SALMON

FRIDAY 8/1

PICKATHON
(Pendarvis Farm, 16581 SE Hagen) Read our feature on Pickathon.

QUEER MUSIC FESTIVAL: GAYTHEIST, NIGHT CADET, 7HIRDWAV3, JOHN COONS, PURRBOT
(Crush, 1400 SE Morrison) See My, What a Busy Week!

FREE SALAMANDER EXHIBIT, DEAD RIDER, DRAGGING AN OX THROUGH WATER
(Mississippi Studios, 3939 N Mississippi) Any musical project that springs out of the U.S. Maple orbit must be taken seriously. Case in point: Dead Rider. Former U.S. Maple guitarist Todd Rittmann leads this Chicago group of misfits, which also includes keyboardist Thymme Jones (Cheer-Accident, Brise-Glace), trumpeter/keyboardist Andrea Fraught, and drummer Matt Espy. Their latest album on Drag City, Chills on Glass, thankfully bears some of those Captain Beefheart-meets-This Heat traits that abounded on U.S. Maple records (see especially "Sex Grip Enemy"), but Dead Rider swim in slightly more conventional, songwriterly waters. Still, these tracks flail at you from strange angles, bearing frayed, barbed-wire guitar and keyboard textures and vocals oozing suave desperation, so expect a night of puzzling, equilibrium-ruining avant-rock. DAVE SEGAL

T-PAIN
(Roseland, 8 NW 6th) Finding good music amid the over-produced world of shorties and forties can sometimes feel challenging and pointless, but T-Pain brings the soul and musicality that so many others sorely lack. Named from the Florida struggles ("Tallahassee Pain") of his childhood, Faheem Rasheed Najm was not your average African American Muslim boy. By the age of 10, he'd turned his bedroom into a lo-fi recording studio. He's since gone on to be the poster boy for Auto-Tune—for better or worse. Though some of T-Pain's more recent material has been more "meh" than "aww yeah," Najm still writes actual songs about real aspects of his life, from suicide and AIDS to falling in love with strippers. His new album, Stoicville: The Phoenix, is due later in the year, and the advance single "Up Down (Do This All Day)" was produced by DJ Mustard. ROSE FINN

SATURDAY 8/2

PICKATHON
(Pendarvis Farm, 16581 SE Hagen) Read our feature on Pickathon.

GIRL FEST NW: BED, BLOSSOM, MELISSA LEVI, THIRD WAVE, DAUGHTERS OF THE DEAD SEA
(Lola's Room, 1332 W Burnside) See My, What a Busy Week!

GLASS CLOUD, SCALE THE SUMMIT, ERRA, MONUMENTS, REFLECTIONS, ORDER OF APOLLO
(Hawthorne Theatre, 1507 SE César E. Chávez) Read our article on Scale the Summit.

YONATAN GAT, THE WE SHARED MILK, DON'T, SELECTOR DUB NARCOTIC
(Mississippi Studios, 3939 N Mississippi) You might be familiar with guitarist Yonatan Gat from his time spent in Monotonix, the rambunctious garage-rock band out of Tel Aviv, Israel, that became legendary while playing over a thousand shows from 2005 to 2011. A Monotonix live set saw the band surround themselves with the crowd and take part in a wide range of gravity-defying acrobatics. With plenty of stage dives, rafter scaling, and a crowd-surfing drum kit, the band delivered fierce and engaging performances on a nightly basis. In his post-Monotonix life, Gat had some well-deserved R&R in Portugal, where he carved out the more experimental leanings of his solo debut, Iberian Passage. On the album, Gat displays his mastery of laying down hefty garage-punk licks, while also managing to incorporate bits of Os Mutantes-inspired Tropicália flair and Middle Eastern-styled rhythms within his intense and hallucinatory shredding. CHIPP TERWILLIGER

BIG BLACK CLOUD, TOWERS, TOIM, A VOLCANO
(High Water Mark, 6800 NE MLK) The Mercury doesn't currently offer an award for best album title of the year, but I think we need to change that, as local noise-rockers Big Black Cloud have a new cassette called Lessons in Fuck You 2. Right? Award-winning stuff right there. The trio of Nick Capello, Soo Koelbli, and Travis Wainwright have made a punishing but very fun record of violent smash-rock and horrific outer-space encounters, further evidence of what happens when DIY punk is fearlessly taken to its powerful extremes. With two brilliant albums under their belt—Dark Age and Black Friday—and now the new tape, Big Black Cloud are quite simply one of the best bands in town, heavy or otherwise. Turn up Lessons in Fuck You 2 as loud as you can and tell me it doesn't feel good. NL

GRAVES AT SEA, PRIMITIVE MAN, BASTARD FEAST, HEXIS
(Tonic Lounge, 3100 NE Sandy) Primitive Man is ugly and ruthless. The Denver trio's debut LP, Scorn (which Relapse reissued last year), is a slab of impenetrable heaviness—just absolutely merciless. Few doom bands get anywhere close to infusing their riffs with that kind of hatefulness, and you're gonna want a nice long bath after listening to it. Primitive Man is playing with a couple local heavyweights with new releases. The band formerly known as Elitist gas just released their first album since changing their name to Bastard Feast, and Osculum Infame will scratch your death metal itch. Meanwhile, Graves at Sea have a new split with Sourvein that's all riffs, no filler. MWS

KEVIN GATES, CHEVY WOODS, TH3RD, D3, STEVO THE WEIRDO
(Peter's Room at the Roseland, 8 NW 6th) In a world that celebrates singsong rappers Drake and Future, it's a mystery why Kevin Gates hasn't had a similar breakthrough. The Baton Rouge emcee is a better rapper and singer than the latter, and more credible in the streets than the former. Most importantly, he's riding an incredible hot streak as far as mixtapes go; his last three—particularly 2013's The Luca Brasi Story and this year's By Any Means—have been exquisitely detailed amalgams of trap-rap beats, refreshing mel-odicism, and Gates' emotionally forthright lyrics about fear, insecurity, heartbreak, and violence, delivered via a pliable, creaky Southern mumble that's one of the most compelling voices in rap right now. On the hook of "Wish I Had It," the first track on By Any Means, Gates croaks: "Out my window, I see everything I dream about and wish I had it." He's close. And he deserves it. BS

BLANK PAGES, THE ESTRANGED
(The Lovecraft, 421 SE Grand) The first Google hit for "Blank Pages band" leads to the website for an overproduced Christian pop-rock band, complete with a landing page that feels it's reasonable to auto-play music at a deafening volume. As such, it could be easy to get discouraged in your attempt to discover the music of the Berlin-based garage-rock quartet of the same name. Dig just a little deeper into those results, though, and you'll arrive at the Bandcamp page for the German punk-rock label Hardware Records, host to Blank Pages' excellent self-titled debut. The release offers 10 tracks of urgent punk rock that is completely drenched in a hyper pop sensibility that rivals the likes of the Marked Men or Sonic Avenues. Atmospheric post-punk outfit the Estranged joins Blank Pages tonight. The Portland band made an impassioned appearance at PDX Pop Now! the other week, and they released one of the year's better albums on Dirtnap back in May. CT

MICHAEL McDONALD, TOTO
(Spirit Mountain Casino, 27100 SW Salmon River Hwy, Grand Ronde) I'm not saying this show will be good, but admit it. You're curious. NL

SUNDAY 8/3

PICKATHON
(Pendarvis Farm, 16581 SE Hagen) Read our feature on Pickathon.

THE FLAMING LIPS, RADIATION CITY
(Tom McCall Waterfront Park, SW Naito & Columbia) See My, What a Busy Week!

CLAP YOUR HANDS SAY YEAH
(Mississippi Studios, 3939 N Mississippi) See My, What a Busy Week!

XIU XIU, CIRCUIT DES YEUX, MARISA ANDERSON
(Doug Fir, 830 E Burnside) This has been a busy year for goth-art/indie-pop rockers Xiu Xiu. Since December, they've released four disparate albums that include a haunting free-jazz take on the music of Nina Simone, an album of American and Caribbean spirituals of the 19th and early 20th centuries recorded at Sigur Ros' studio in Iceland, a Record Store Day-only hand-packaged best of and rarities collection, and an album based on a violent Japanese erotic film from 1979. It's hard to predict what tonight will hold, but Xiu Xiu's live shows are historically even more surprising, dark, and angry than their albums. So whether it's a show led by a creepily tender version of "Wild Is the Wind" or a set of minimalist industrial drum machine songs about double suicide, it is likely to be, either way, the most intense show you'll see all year. JOSHUA JAMES AMBERSON

MONDAY 8/4

ECHO AND THE BUNNYMEN
(Crystal Ballroom, 1332 W Burnside) It's been said that Echo and the Bunnymen could have been the biggest band in the world. Part of the wave of British post-punk acts that emerged in the late '70s and early '80s, the band led by the dour baritone of Ian McCulloch (with a personality to match) has, for whatever reason, never achieved the echelon of contemporaries like U2, the Smiths, and the Cure. It wasn't for lack of confidence—McCulloch famously labeled 1984's Ocean Rain the "greatest album ever made," which stands to reason, given that it was made by the "most important band to ever put an album out." Hyperbole aside, there's no questioning the central role in pop culture played by select Bunnymen cuts: "Bring on the Dancing Horses" in Pretty in Pink; the unlikely take of the Doors' "People Are Strange" in The Lost Boys; and Donnie Darko's use of the ever-majestic "The Killing Moon" several years later. Touring with a new album (their 12th), Echo and the Bunnymen come to town more than 35 years into their existence for something that's not a nostalgia tour, which maybe gives them the last laugh. JEREMY PETERSEN Also see My, What a Busy Week!, and All-Ages Action!

HAMILTON LEITHAUSER, AVID DANCER
(Doug Fir, 830 E Burnside) Hamilton Leithauser's finest performance will forever be contained those four-and-a-half larynx-shredding minutes of "The Rat," from the Walkmen's 2004 statement-of-purpose Bows + Arrows. Now that the Walkmen have disintegrated, essentially, Leithauser has forgone the bile to embrace the swankier, suit-and-tie side of his musical personality with his solo debut, Black Hours. The album opens with a snoozy lounge stumble called "5 AM," which is followed by the pizzacato traipse of "The Silent Orchestra" and the strum-and-handclap sing-along "Alexandra." It's a diverse if not entirely coherent record, and individual moments do stand out on their own, even if the whole feels like a grab bag. "11 O'Clock Friday Night" could be the highlight, a simple but straightforward pre-func pumper centered on a chorus of "You and me and everybody else." NL

TUESDAY 8/5

RX BANDITS, THE DEAR HUNTER, FROM INDIAN LAKES
(Hawthorne Theatre, 1507 SE César E. Chávez) See All-Ages Action!

HE WHOSE OX IS GORED, MUSCLE AND MARROW, CHASMA
(East End, 203 SE Grand) Of all the groups that have formed in response to the post-metal work of Neurosis and Isis, He Whose Ox Is Gored is one of the few that takes the template laid by its influences and improves upon it. It has something to do with the Seattle quartet's smart use of synthesizers, letting the sonic possibilities of the instrument add to the atmosphere and energy of their work, while also providing small shafts of sunlight to cut through the otherwise inky murk of their slow-burning compositions. Mostly, HWOIG are just better songwriters that most. The two tracks that make up their current 10-inch record, Nightshade, are as engaging as they are intense, like having someone wrap a warm blanket over your shoulders before jumping with you off a cliff. ROBERT HAM

AUTONOMICS, PSYCHOMAGIC, MUFASSA
(Bunk Bar, 1028 SE Water) Portland band Autonomics recorded the entirety of their new EP, Keep Tulsa Ugly, in Tulsa, Oklahoma, while on a day-and-a-half break from tour. The urgency puts the band in the best possible light, as the three-piece knocks out five quick garage-rock torpedoes in under 13 minutes. "Super Fuzz" is a gumdrop pop song painted over in tape saturation and messy distortion, resulting in a sloppy-joe track that'll have you licking your fingers. And "I Love You, Oprah Winfrey" is a razor-tight, speedy bop that would probably confuse Ms. Winfrey, but you'll enjoy. I don't know how Tulsa feels about Keep Tulsa Ugly, but from here in the Northwest, it sounds damn good. NL