Up & Coming 

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THURSDAY 4/16

HOLCOMBE WALLER , GABRIEL KAHANE

(Mississippi Studios, 3939 N Mississippi) See My, What a Busy Week!

BLADEN COUNTY SHOWCASE: AUTOPILOT IS FOR LOVERS, J. NICHOLAS ALLARD, ALAN SINGLEY, EZRA CAREY

(Holocene, 1001 SE Morrison) Part of tonight's Bladen County Records showcase—a semi-regular affair of bands on the Portland label—the music of Autopilot Is for Lovers spins around the dizzy musicianship of Adrienne Hatkin. Each song on Autopilot's brand-new To the Wolves album has Hatkin either pumping a carousel accordion, plucking a spindly banjo, or arc welding with an electric guitar. Her quavering voice unifies each of these disparate elements, like the dim echo of an Acadian harvest-time waltz on album opener "Whale Belly," or the zombie child sing-along of "Pine Box Town," or the bluegrass death flutter of "The Last Good Time." Hatkin isn't interested in music that gently whispers affirmations while tenderly massaging your sore bones. Instead, she slowly drips the vital blood-essence out of her songs and pumps them full of formaldehyde. Spooky, to be sure—but these songs are going to stick around for a damn long time. NED LANNAMANN

WEINLAND

(Kennedy School, 5736 NE 33rd) There were countless high points to last week's Weinland CD release party—since, really, it was more of a party than your typical release concert—but their stark and painfully intimate performance of "The Letters II" had to be one of this band's finest moments to date. Thanks to McMenamins' Great Northwest Music Tour, you can hear both that song and its prequel ("The Letters") in one sitting. Hell, you can hear every single song that has ever spilled from Adam Shearer's pen, as the band will perform their entire catalog—Demersville, La Lamentor, and the brand-new Breaks in the Sun—in its entirety and for free. Then, after the show, the band will personally join you in the Kennedy School soaking pool. Remember, no horseplay. EZRA ACE CARAEFF

FRIDAY 4/17

SOFT TAGS, PINEHURST KIDS, GREENLADIES

(Slabtown, 1033 NW 16th) Soft Tags don't really sound typical of music that bears the tag "lo-fi"—in other words, they don't sound a lot like Guided by Voices or Sebadoh—but their four-track home recordings have a similarly cast-off air, an of-the-moment quality that's devoid of pretension. Their debut full-length, Blue House, arrived in February after countless EPs that showcased the band's murky pop gems, and the album maps the uniquely strange sonic landscape that their primitive recording rig emits. Live, Soft Tags hurtle forward with the thrust of overdriven guitars, pounding drums, and Richard Shirk's sharply nasal vocals. If that's not enough, some of our very favorite people are also on the bill: Pinehurst Kids are the evergreen power pop of Joe Davis—who daylights as the Mercury's head of production—and Greenladies, whose ranks include former Mercury News Editor Scott Moore, open the proceedings with bouncy, leftfield pop-rock. NL

VETIVER, RICHARD SWIFT, MBILLY

(Doug Fir, 830 E Burnside) In a wide shot, it's hard not to view Andy Cabic—Vetiver's creative nucleus—as the timid apprentice of late-'60s hippie-delia. In roughly the same amount of time that the Grateful Dead moved from a notorious freak-out band to a countrified soft-rock combo, Vetiver have taken a similar course, culminating in this year's breezy yet focused Tight Knit. But close up, Cabic's devotion to all things rootsy and patchouli-scented has produced an evolution of sorts. New tracks like "Another Reason to Go" add touches of other genres—in this case, funk—from beyond the horizons of the original jam bands. If ever it was "all about the music, man," then it's here... and now. ANDREW STOUT

EXQUISITE RAP DUO, CHICHARONES, DJ ZONE, KL EDWARDS

(Dante's, 1 SW 3rd) By reputation (and also by the aura that I project which is visible to those possessing a higher consciousness) I am known to hate comedy rap. I can't say that the Exquisite Rap Duo changes my opinion of that bastard genre at all, but I will say that Anthony McNamer's vanity project has some pretty cool friends. Their particular brand of hiphop jokery is not completely awful, and with Chicharones and Pale Soul on tonight's bill it's going to be a good show. It might be hard to reconcile Pale Soul's dark, yet incredible, tracks with the lighter tones painted by ERD, but judging by the "I'm So Techno" skit on Sleep's Christopher album, we know he has a sense of humor as well. GRAHAM BAREY

SATURDAY 4/18

MT. ST. HELENS VIETNAM BAND, THE WAR ON DRUGS, PATTERNS

(Doug Fir, 830 E Burnside) See Music.

BICYCLE DAY'S EVE: ROMULO DEL CASTILLO, LET'S GO OUTSIDE, REVY

(2410 N Mississippi) See Music.

RECORD STORE DAY: THE SHAKY HANDS (2 PM), LOCH LOMOND (3 PM)

(Jackpot Records, 203 SW 9th) See Music.

RECORD STORE DAY: PAULA SINCLAIR, MARY FLOWER, LLOYD JONES

(Music Millennium, 3158 E Burnside) See Music.

RECORD STORE DAY INTO NIGHT: DJ SAM ADAMS & MORE

(The Cleaners at the Ace Hotel, 403 SW 10th) See Music.

JAMES LOW BAND, WHITE HINTERLAND, KAITLYN NI DONOVAN

(Mississippi Studios, 3939 N Mississippi) The newly reborn Mississippi Studios is again taking its rightful place as the intimate, artist-friendly home of Portland songwriters of all stripes. James Low is a rocker and folker in the classic mold: His latest EP, The Blackguard's Waltz, is rutted around Low's guitar and vocals, with hints of fatigue and regret seasoning fine songs built with clear, sturdy lines. Meanwhile, there isn't a straight line in any of Casey Dienel's music, and her songs under the White Hinterland moniker are laden with curlicues, nooks, crannies, and an expanding sense of surrealism that Dienel pilots with compassion and a genuine flair for artistry. The music of White Hinterland is legitimately original and unfailingly rewarding. Kaitlyn ni Donovan is the vocalist for shoegazers the High Violets, and her solo work is ambient with diaphanous wisps of Celtic coldwater folk. NL

QUEENSRŸCHE

(Roseland, 8 NW 6th) Seattle's finest progressive metal band Queensrÿche still has four-fifths of its original lineup nearly two decades after Empire anticipated the commercial death of Hollywood glam. Expect to hear the Floydian power ballad "Silent Lucidity" during tonight's extended Empire suite (Rage for Order and American Soldier suites are also planned), but missing will be guitarist Chris DeGarmo, who composed the hit. His absence is noticeable on American Soldier, a new concept album that juxtaposes military interview blurbs with unremarkable stomp rock. Frontman Geoff Tate has kept his multi-octave voice in good shape, hitting rich strides on "If I Were King" and "Hundred Mile Stare," but without the compositional flair of DeGarmo, he's a leader without the support of his army. MIKE MEYER

SUNDAY 4/19

MATES OF STATE, BLACK KIDS, JUDGEMENT DAY

(Wonder Ballroom, 128 NE Russell) See Music.

QUIET COUNTRIES , (((IN MONO))), AHNLI, ANY MEANS TO MANY

(Holocene, 1001 SE Morrison) Hindered by a hand injury, Leb Borgerson of Quiet Countries set out to make his latest recording a guitar-less affair. The Karate Williams Diaries is a recording that balances Endtroducing's artistic vision—dusty samples, restrained beats, grand instrumental arrangements—with a free-for-all of soft digital pop (think Album Leaf) and some hiphop thrown in as well. It's those moments in particular—courtesy of guest emcee A.E.D.—that highlight the recording, offering a perfect combination of tempered instrumentals with hiphop swagger. The only downside? Not enough A.E.D. If these two collaborate on an entire record together, look out. EAC

THIEVERY CORPORATION, SUTRO

(Roseland, 8 NW 6th) A quick breakdown of Washington, DC, duo Thievery Corporation's music into its three fundamental parts: The band's spirituality is drawn from the Rasta tradition in reggae/dub, their urbanism from black American hiphop, and their cosmopolitanism (which is not the same as urbanism) from continental European chic or cool. These basic parts form a musical machine that processes Nigerian Afrobeat (the duo's most recent album, Radio Retaliation, featured Fela Kuti's son Femi Kuti), Brazilian bossa nova (which is prominent on their third album, The Richest Man in Babylon), and Indian raga/classical (which is featured on their second and most successful album, The Mirror Conspiracy). From this multicultural sound rises Thievery Corporation's politics, which, because of its global scope, is a politics of what the philosophers Hardt and Negri call "the multitude." CHARLES MUDEDE

VERMILLION LIES, RUN ON SENTENCE , JUAN PROPHET ORGANIZATION

(Someday Lounge, 125 NW 5th) While on tour with Amanda Palmer of the Dresden Dolls last fall, the "Sisters Vermillion" (as this real-life sibling cabaret act is called by fans) found themselves sharing a bill with the Builders and the Butchers. By all reports the groups got along famously, which is no surprise considering both bring Greil Marcus' idea of "old, weird America" to life in raucous personae and performance. For all the ground they share with such neo-gypsy-revival tent acts as Jason Webley and Gogol Bordello, Vermillion Lies have staked a claim on originality through circus-act theatrics and meticulous tinkering with unique "found" instruments, including a barbecue grill and a broken toy piano. Tonight's show is a late addition to a tour that will bring them all the way to Russia and back. MARANDA BISH

MONDAY 4/20

THIEVERY CORPORATION, SUTRO

(Roseland, 8 NW 6th) See Sunday's listing above.

NOAH AND THE WHALE, FERRABY LIONHEART, ANNI ROSSI

(Doug Fir, 830 E Burnside) Noah and the Whale's music is as guileless as their name. It's as though they're saying, "Yes, we know we sound like we should be on the soundtrack to a Noah Baumbach movie. But you like Noah Baumbach movies, remember?" And their excellent debut, 2008's Peaceful, the World Lays Me Down, should remind any listener whose heart hasn't completely hardened of the restorative effects of earnest vocals and sunny indie pop hooks. You like those things, too! Vocalist Charlie Fink sings like Jeff Mangum on better drugs, and Peaceful is threaded with just enough melancholy that the album's bouncy optimism seems hopeful rather than naïve. ALISON HALLETT Also see My, What a Busy Week!

GROUPER, BONUS, PETE SWANSON, DJ SCOTT SIMMONS

(Valentine's, 232 SW Ankeny) Despite the acclaim last year's Dragging a Dead Deer up a Hill received both locally and around the world—and in light of the fact that this one-woman band is about to warm crowds around the country opening for Animal Collective—Grouper's Liz Harris is keeping it real by continuing to play free shows in intimate spaces. The opportunities to soak up the sparse, sprawling reverberations of her music in such a setting may be numbered after her return from tour with AC, but at least for now, Grouper is able to carry on in the Portland music community spirit, with fellow ambient-experimental musician (and friend) Peter Swanson (formerly of Yellow Swans) joining her. MB

TUESDAY 4/21

MASTODON, KYLESA, INTRONAUT

(Hawthorne Theatre, 1507 SE 39th) You know the deal: Mastodon are a baroque, stabbing Atlanta band that broke into the metal mainstream with Leviathan, their concept-album homage to Moby Dick. Their songs have since been featured on Rock Band 2 and Guitar Hero III: Legends of Rock. Their latest album, Crack the Skye, is also conceptual—about astral travel and Rasputin—and meanders through different time signatures and moods with long, crystalline intros ("The Czar"), whirligig riffs, and blasting, stop-and-go chords. Is that a banjo kicking off the second track? Mastodon are a metal band for all seasons. BRENDAN KILEY

FLASPAR, MATTRESS , TANNING

(Valentine's, 232 SW Ankeny) The whooshing sound of Flaspar is like traveling through a 3D computer-generated landscape, with the hills of the horizon taking the form of crinkly lines of ascending and receding resolution, and the sky above appearing as a void of monitor-screen black. But Flaspar aren't 8-bit synth fetishists; raw drums and crashing cymbals perpetuate their dance beats, and cool new wave guitar colors the palette in both day-glo and earth tones. Best of all are Rebecca Carlisle-Healy's vocals, which are either robotically chilly or nearly misting with human heat—or some strange replicon mixture of both. Flaspar is a synth-punk band for rockists, or a garage band for bitsynthers; it's the best of both worlds. NL

MR. LIF, GRIEVES, CHICHARONES, WILLIE EVANS, STATIK

(Holocene, 1001 SE Morrison) Boston's intellectual rapper Mr. Lif has two hiphop albums with Definitive Jux (I Phantom and Mo' Mega), and a new one, I Heard it Today, which comes out April 21. Mr. Lif has the distinction of being the first and probably only hiphop artist to deal with TARP (Troubled Assets Relief Program), and therefore continues hiphop's role of being the CNN for black folks. He raps/reports: "Obama wouldn't stop 'em [the banks]/Neither would McCain/Let me explain/I got lost playing your game/They pumped a couple slugs in my frame/Y'all taxpayer slayers/Turn the other cheek deregulators/Trust betrayers/Reagan, Nixon, and Petraeus poorly portray us/Program us just to sway us/Promise us favors/Then use 'em just to dominate us/Oh, now you're printing $700 billion just to save the children?/Y'all muthafuckaz 'bout to make a killin'." Sadly, many blacks will not hear this important report/rap because the hiphop channel they're watching is not CNN, but QVC. CM

WEDNESDAY 4/22

BLOC PARTY, MENOMENA

(Roseland, 8 NW 6th) A watched pot never boils, and no matter how intently I stare at my iTunes playlist, a new Menomena record will not appear any quicker. In fact, word on the street—since, really, there is no band more "street" than Menomena—is that the follow-up to Friend and Foe might not come out until next year. What the fuck, Menomena? This isn't about you, it's about me. You can't just hand me a perfect record—I dare you to find a single thing wrong with Friend and Foe, it's without a doubt one of the finest recordings I have ever had the pleasure of enjoying—and not instantly follow it up with something even greater, more ambitious, and absolutely without flaw. Fuck patience being a virtue, I want new Menomena, and I want it now. EAC

ROSS BEACH, THE HELLPETS, KAITLYN NI DONOVAN, LEVI CECIL, ALI IPPOLITO, ADRIENNE HATKIN, T.S. BROOKS, PATRICK KEARNS

(Backspace, 115 NW 5th) Ross Beach has a hell of a resumé. He's frontman for Ross and the Hellpets and a co-founder of PDX Pop Now!, and he collaborated with a number of musicians from the Elephant 6 collective—even Neutral Milk Hotel—back in the day. Now he's putting out an album under the moniker Ross Island Bridge, taking its name from the familiar Portland river-span. The album, Volume 1: The Process Is Now the Work, is Beach's laptop electronica with the guest voices of Portland's best and brightest, including Nick Jaina, Grey Anne, and Jon Ragel of Boy Eats Drum Machine. Several of the album's collaborators will be on hand to celebrate its release, and the likes of Blue Skies for Black Hearts' Pat Kearns and Leviethan's Levi Cecil will elevate the sometimes chintzy sound of Beach's watery backdrops for an evening that'll pair some of the Portland music scene's best singer/songwriters with one of its most prominent figureheads. NL

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