Up & Coming 

THE GREENHORNES, Fri Dec 10, Berbati's Pan

THE GREENHORNES, Fri Dec 10, Berbati's Pan

THURSDAY 12/9

CLASSICAL REVOLUTION PDX, COPY, MATT CARLSON, DANIEL MENCHE, THOMAS THORSON, DJ E*ROCK

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

NEW JACK SWING NIGHT: DJ HUMAN HIGHLIGHT FILM, DJ COOL IT NOW

(Langano Lounge, 1435 SE Hawthorne) See My, What a Busy Week!

PETER HOOK AND FRIENDS PERFORM UNKNOWN PLEASURES

(Doug Fir, 830 E Burnside) Read our article on Peter Hook.

BROKEN BELLS, MIMICKING BIRDS

(Crystal Ballroom, 1332 W Burnside) Broken Bells is what I imagine the Shins would have ended up sounding like had James Mercer not completely dismantled the band a couple years back. Instead, he decided to make it work with Gnarls Barkley's jack-of-all-trades Danger Mouse, who leaves his mark all over the group's debut while still allowing space for Mercer's indie rock leanings to come through. Essentially, listeners got exactly what they expected from the two collaborators, which at times sounds like Wincing the Night Away meets Gorillaz. If you already have your ticket for the group's sold-out Portland show, you're stoked. If not, you'll just have to wait; who knows, the next time Mercer performs here it may be with his previous band. MARK LORE

KENSETH THIBIDEAU, TRAWLER BYCATCH, SECRET CODES

(The Woods, 6637 SE Milwaukie) The vision quest that Trawler Bycatch went on before creating their newest effort Schlep'm must have been an intense one. The record sounds like the band went looking for musical inspiration by streaking through the woods, eating handfuls of peyote, and howling at the moon to present them with their guardian animals. From front to back, Schlep'm maintains a constant flow of primal, unhinged prog-tastic acid-rock psychedelia. Each track has a presence and personality all its own. The record begins with the erratic "Thissletia," a song that turns from a creepy, swelling groan to a funky, spaced-out bootyshaker, then quickly drops you right back into the haunting abyss. With the tracks "Blinded by Fun" and "Heaving through the Seasons," the band cuts loose, displaying rocking riffs and riotous vocals. Throughout all of Schlep'm's freakouts and technicolor madness, Trawler Bycatch employs a quirky sense of silliness, which helps keep the record grounded just enough. ARIS WALES

ANDREW JACKSON JIHAD, ROYAL MONSTERS

(The Artistery, 4315 SE Division) Funny lyrics about Con Air and the awkwardness of personal songwriting ("at least we're saying something/And I hope that no one's listening/ Because this is kind of embarrassing/And everyone who hears this thinks we're joking") can only go so far. But Andrew Jackson Jihad backs up the They Might Be Giants-style white-boy faux-lofty musing with actual songwriting skills—rocked-up folk songs with horns and a wall of guitars—and a sense that they won't kill a song's essence for a cheap joke. It's rare that you encounter a jokey, quirky band that feels like a collection of people you think would actually be smart and literate in "real life." AJJ is just doing what comes naturally, and they sound good doing it. PAUL CONSTANT

NUX VOMICA, DARK BLACK, SQUALORA, DEAD BY DAWN

(The Know, 2026 NE Alberta) Portland by-way-of Baltimore metal outfit Nux Vomica continue to receive attention for blurring genres—from crust punk to black metal—at the same time baffling even their most dedicated followers. It works to great effect, too—so much so that the band has been referred to as "the Yes of crust." Before you attempt to wrap your head around that description, consider "Corpses with Egos," a 12-minute epic whose brute force is almost lost to the song's calculated arrangements and a few creepy, well-placed samples from the movie Jesus Camp. There's no doubt heshers have a lot to love in Nux Vomica. But smarty-pants post-punkers might enjoy watching this unit operate just as much. ML

FRIDAY 12/10

BIG FREEDIA, BEYONDADOUBT, ONUINU

(Holocene, 1001 SE Morrison) When I was young and in college, I never dreamed of getting breast implants, like other girls. No sir! I wanted ASS implants. See, I went to school in Detroit, and back then ghettotech ruled all the best dance parties. I would only DREAM of dancing the way girls at those parties could. I haven't really thought of it much since moving to the Northwest—not until I saw Big "Queen Diva" Freedia at MusicfestNW this year. Holy shit! A friend from New Orleans had been sending me YouTube videos, but I had no idea that this entire movement—New Orleans Bounce—was happening. Some people think it's new, but Freedia, along with Katey Red and Freedia's "daughter," Sissy Nobby, have been ruling NOLA's dance parties since the late '80s. Similar to ghettotech, bounce is a high-energy, booty-centric call of the wild(est). Better than ghettotech, bounce is gay-friendly. (But stop calling it "sissy bounce"—sayeth Freedia in a recent Fader interview, "It's just 'bounce music' in New Orleans, you may have a gay rapper, but you have straight rappers too.") Gay or straight, it's time t'shake those hips like BATTLESHIPS! KELLY O Also see My, What a Busy Week!

WILL WEST AND THE FRIENDLY STRANGERS, GROOVY WALLPAPER

(Secret Society Ballroom, 116 NE Russell) Tonight's show sees Will West and the Friendly Strangers sending Take This Moment... out into the world, a new full-length boasting West's trademark acoustic songwriting. Originally from North Carolina, the Portland resident has miles of American road under his belt—including some of the blander, strip-mall aspects, like the Jack Johnson shuffle of "Falling," from the new record. But there's also fine stuff like the delicate "In a Dream," which contains an old-time country gospel feel. And there's the hollow-log swamp of "Banjo Groove" and the lilting bluegrass and call-and-response of "Everytime." The Friendly Strangers are a formidable ensemble, boasting fiddles and banjos and mandolins, all guided by West's casual ringleading. NED LANNAMANN

THEE OH SEES, BARE WIRES, CYCLOTRON, ORCA TEAM

(East End, 203 SE Grand) Thee Oh Sees are undeniably one of the best American bands going now, and they always bring the infernal heat live. What I wrote about them the last time they came through still applies: "Leader John Dwyer elevates the band above most in the genre with songwriting chops that somehow find limber, lubricious ways to invert garage rock's creaky tropes." Oakland's Bare Wires are not quite as challenging or as exhilarating as their billmates, but they apply an endearing neo-glam glaze to garage rock's well-worn machinations. DAVE SEGAL

STORNOWAY, GREYLAG

(Doug Fir, 830 E Burnside) Stornoway feel like a Portland craft fair. They're little pastel woolen mittens and found art and things for your bike with animals painted on. They're earthy and positive and cute—twee, really. And totally Britpop. The Oxford foursome are named after a small town in Scotland—a place I've always considered somewhat Oregonesque in its green, wet, depressed seasonal way. Stornoway's breathy, heartfelt, and folky bubblegum treads the usual travails of love and loss, as does all good Britpop. But they also wander off the beaten pathway into more green and fertile fields. "The Battery Human," a plucky banjo footstomper about life away from the grid, could be a potential theme song for Pickathon's barn shows. And on cold winter nights like these, a burst of golden pop and a crisp view of rich, fertile rolling hills becomes that much more welcome and warming. ANDREW R TONRY

THE GREENHORNES, HACIENDA

(Berbati's Pan, 10 SW 3rd) In the '60s, garage bands weren't just thrashing out razor-sharp proto-punk and dumbbell trash rock; a lot of the white American bands that popped up in the wake of the British Invasion did what their English counterparts were doing, performing covers of the soul and R&B hits coming out of Detroit and Memphis. That's what separates Cincinnati's Greenhornes from the rest of the modern-day garage rock revival—their songs could, with drastically different arrangements and a little bit of imagination, very well be Motown hits. This infusion of soul, into what is otherwise a genre saturated with paisley-psych retrofitting and white-punk posturing, puts the Greenhornes at the forefront of the garage scene, with an airtight repertoire. They've been on hiatus for the last five years—you might recognize bassist Jack Lawrence and drummer Patrick Keeler as one-half of the Raconteurs, but they've made a welcome reunion with guitarist/vocalist Craig Fox (who's a better songwriter than Jack White, if you must know the truth) and put out Four Stars, a strong new batch of songs on White's Third Man label. NL

DJ ROB SWIFT, ANIMAL FARM, DJ WICKED, DJ WELS, EXCELLENT GENTLEMEN

(Up Front Bar and Grill, 833 SW Naito) Rob Swift is a dazzling NYC turntablist whose peak moment of fame occurred between the end of the '90s and the beginning of the '00s, as the most visible member of a turntable quartet called the X-Ecutioners. Agreed, that name is horrible, and may have been behind the crew's decline and dissolution. Its earlier name was the X-Men. Marvel Comics, however, put an end to that. And after the name change, the crew was never the same. (It's worth thinking about all this in the light of They Live!'s unfortunate change to Mash Hall.) Anyway, anyone who has watched Rob Swift knows the man is massive on the wheels of steel. CHARLES MUDEDE

SATURDAY 12/11

THE GROUCH, DJ FRESH, BROTHER ALI, SNUGGLES, ELIGH, LOS RAKAS

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

TAME IMPALA, STARDEATH AND WHITE DWARVES

(Doug Fir, 830 E Burnside) Read our article on Tame Impala.

ANDREW JACKSON JIHAD, ROYAL MONSTERS, IOA, LEE COREY OSWALD

(The Artistery, 4315 SE Division) See Friday's live music listing.

SYSTEM AND STATION, OXCART, POLICE TEETH

(The Knife Shop at Kelly's Olympian, 426 SW Washington) One of Portland's unheralded treasures, System and Station have been going strong since 1998 and show no signs of letting up. Their newest album A Series of Screws (the fifth full-length in an impressively prolific discography) might be the most rewarding listen they've crafted yet, 10 concise rock songs that contain spiraling subtleties and inventive songwriting. With the long, bearded shadow of Northwest indie rock becoming more and more diffused as bands like Built to Spill and Modest Mouse enter the twilight of their most vital years, it's satisfying to hear System and Station carrying the banner in their own unique fashion. Tonight is a free show—but you're asked to bring a toy for needy children; it's also a benefit for Transition Projects, and it's being filmed for a DVD release at some point in the future. NL

LOW, CHARLIE PARR

(Mississippi Studios, 3939 N Mississippi) In anything other than small doses overly jolly holiday music treacle—Phil Spector notwithstanding—can wear out its welcome, especially when put up against the more forlorn, chilly end of the holiday music spectrum. So it makes sense to learn that Low recorded a Christmas album in 1999 (it's called simply Christmas); this year it's been re-released on vinyl. I haven't heard it, but I can't think of a better band to trudge through a selection of holiday songs than the Duluth, Minnesota, husband-and-wife duo, who've always had a tinge of wintry moroseness in their quiet, slow-burning rock. The last Low album came out in 2007, but guitarist Alan Sparhawk has gotten the Led out with his two recent Retribution Gospel Choir albums. Still, it's always good news to hear that a new Low record (provisionally titled C'mon) is on the way for next year. On this brief holiday tour of the western US, Low is playing new tunes from C'mon as well as seasonal fare from Christmas, plus a portion of tunes from all their other records as well. NL

SUNDAY 12/12

THE PEOPLE'S YOGA BENEFIT: THE AKRON EXTENDED FAMILY YOGIC FLYERS, LOVERS, OHIOAN

(Someday Lounge, 125 NW 5th) See My, What a Busy Week!

THE DANDY WARHOLS, BLUE GIANT

(Crystal Ballroom">Crystal Ballroom, 1332 W Burnside) See read our article on the Dandy Warhols.

BADLY DRAWN BOY, JUSTIN JONES

(Doug Fir, 830 E Burnside) I admit that I've lost track of Badly Drawn Boy. The alter ego of Englishman Damon Gough, BDB put out an attention-grabbing debut in the form of The Hour of Bewilderbeast (great!), a stopgap soundtrack for About a Boy (good!), a loopy, ambitious followup, Have You Fed the Fish? (okay, I guess!)—aaaand that's where I clocked out. Apparently, there have actually been four Badly Drawn Boy albums since then, including this year's It's What I'm Thinking Pt.1—Photographing Snowflakes, and a quick listen reveals that I haven't missed much. He's still wearing that fucking knitted cap, and his records are still bogged down in overwrought production. Still, there's a pop-tunesmith sensibility still kicking around underneath all those overdubs, and Gough's plainspoken vocals are still as personable as ever. One just wishes he could strip things back and let his songs breathe a little more—that he could be a little more Brian Eno and a little less Brian Wilson. NL

FABOLOUS, ILLAJ, ISSA, DJ JUGGERNAUT

(Oregon Convention Center, 777 NE MLK) People, I am not making this shit up—Fabolous is playing the Oregon Convention Center. Seriously. Right down the hall from the Ski and Snowboard MegaSale, one of the world's biggest emcees is headlining the Holiday Gift show, because when you think Christmas, you think the dude who once got a bullet in his leg outside of Diddy's restaurant. While he probably won't unwrap a set of holiday classics, the man behind Ghetto Fabolous is still riding high from his Carlito's Way-obsessed LP, Loso's Way. It's exactly like Hova's American Gangster, but about that one movie where Sean Penn sports a sweet Jewfro. EZRA ACE CARAEFF

MONDAY 12/13

THE LUMINEERS, JOHN HEART JACKIE, NEVELE NEVELE

(Mississippi Studios, 3939 N Mississippi) For some reason, I assumed that "lumineer" was a forgotten, old-timey word for a dude who holds a lantern or something. But a firing-up of the old search engine reveals that lumineers are actually some kind of porcelain denture! I don't think this matters to the Denver folk-strummers in the Lumineers, whose energetic songs match all kinds of smiles, from ragged, gap-toothed grins to perfect glistening rows of pearly whites. The Lumineers have all the ammo they need: terrific songs, and a fantastic singer in the form of Wesley Keith—but the other Lumineers absolutely pull their weight, with gently rollicking folk-flecked arrangements that put every note in the right place. There's longing and joy in equal doses in the Lumineers' tunes, and their raucous live show doesn't ever trample their delicate melodies. This is a band you're going to hear plenty from in the future. NL

TUESDAY 12/14

ALELA DIANE, DENVER, ALINA HARDIN

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

WEDNESDAY 12/15

THE BROTHERS YOUNG, NEAL MORGAN, THE OCEAN FLOOR

(Mississippi Studios, 3939 N Mississippi) Lane Barrington's project the Ocean Floor has doubled in size, to a four-member band that now includes clarinetist Holland Andrews and upright bassist William Weinert. All four Ocean Floorers (the quartet is rounded out by Shannon Steele) harmonize on the group's new material, much of which should appear on their upcoming full-length record, which Barrington says is "really nothing like any of the stuff we've done before." The former Hosannas/Ape Cave/Church drummer—who departed that name-changing band earlier this year—adds, "the Ocean Floor was really on the backburner with Hosannas being so busy for the past couple years but now that it has my full attention, I couldn't be more pleased with the way things are going." With an upcoming tour of New Zealand and the new full-length on the way, we're excited to hear what's next from the Ocean Floor. NL

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