TAPE DECK MOUNTAIN
Mississippi Studios, 1/21

THURSDAY 1/20

POH-HOP: KRIZZ KALIKO, JFK, KENNY MACK, SAPIENT, MANIAC LOK, & MORE

(Backspace, 115 NW 5th) See My, What a Busy Week!

JARAD MILES IN BIRDCLOUD, BARRY BRUSSEAU, JOHN VECCHIARELLI

(The Woods, 6637 SE Milwaukie) Tonight marks the occasion of local singer/songwriter Jarad Miles' two new releases: an EP of older material called One Million Years, and a full-length entitled Rocketship documenting his move to Portland in 2008. Rocketship in particular is a wonderful, weird record, in which standard singer/songwriter tropes are submerged in a bath of spindly parlor piano, County Derry brass, Fantasia strings, and angelic old-Hollywood choirs, all led by Miles' Isaac Brock-like bleating and braying. "He Once Was a Friend of Mine" is a gaspingly good funeral song, with earnestly strident glee-club backing vocals and a crescendoing arrangement; the title track's lyrics describe the wind shaking a tree's leaves, while its delicate instrumentation sounds like exactly that, even before it introduces an overdub of howling wind, which, astonishingly, doesn't sound pandering or gimmicky. His band, Jarad Miles in Birdcloud, is joined on the bill by another local singer/songwriter, Barry Brusseau, who also has a brand-new record readied for tonight's show. NED LANNAMANN

FRIDAY 1/21

JARED MEES AND THE GROWN CHILDREN, AND AND AND, CHARTS

(Slabtown, 1033 NW 16th) See My, What a Busy Week!

POH-HOP: FREEWAY, JAKE ONE, TANYA MORGAN, ILLMACULATE, ONRY OZZBORN, & MORE

(Backspace, 115 NW 5th) Read about Freeway and Jake One.

THE HANDSOME FAMILY, SEAN ROWE

(Doug Fir, 830 E Burnside) Read about the Handsome Family.

ATLANTIC/PACIFIC, HARLOWE AND THE GREAT NORTH WOODS

(The Woods, 6637 SE Milwaukie) Read aboutAtlantic/Pacific.

GLASS CANDY, CHROMATICS, DESIRE, RUDE DUDES

(Rotture, 315 SE 3rd) Fact: Attendees at a Glass Candy/Chromatics show are on average 30 percent more attractive than at any other show. But don't blame the glittery, joined-at-Johnny-Jewel's-hip bands for being beautiful—they work hard, too. Both are fronted by magnetic females: Glass Candy's Ida No commands the stage with ferocity, ripping her own stockings and dripping sweat to make sure not a single person leaves their Italo-disco universe feeling robbed. And while Chromatics' Ruth Radelet is a doll-like and chilly presence onstage as she runs through their eerie, slow-jam set, rest assured that when the balloons come down at a Glass Candy/Chromatics affair, everyone is invited. Marjorie Skinner

METAL SHAKESPEARE COMPANY, BADLANDS, WIZARD RIFLE

(Ash Street Saloon, 225 SW Ash) All things must come to an end, as is the case with the Metal Shakespeare Company, Portland's finest—and only—metal act that pays tribute to the majestic prose of the Bard of Avon. The witty fools of MSC split time between dingy metal shows and classing it up at Shakespeare festivals all over the map, all the while donning tights as restrictive as sausage casings, leaving little to the imagination. Proving that Old English truly does belong in heavy metal, and not just as a typeface, the Metal Shakespeare Company will be missed. Don't skip your final chance to say goodbye—or, God be with ye—to the band. EZRA ACE CARAEFF

ELIZABETH COOK, TIM CARROLL

(Edgefield, 2126 SW Halsey, Troutdale) In the vast traditionalist swamp of good old-fashioned country music, Elizabeth Cook never stops distinguishing herself. Her 2007 LP Balls earned its title with the hit "Sometimes It Takes Balls to Be a Woman" and a gorgeous cover of the Velvet Underground's "Sunday Morning," and Cook's 2010 LP Welder leaves Balls in the dust. The music of Welder runs the gamut, from the twangy stomp of "El Camino" to the stripped-down acoustics of "Follow You Like Smoke" and beyond, but the lyrics are of a piece—simply witty, deeply telling, packed with the kind of pristine details that make you think songwriters should be eligible for Pulitzers. And, oh yeah: Five days a week she hosts "Elizabeth Cook's Apron Strings," a Sirius XM radio show featuring four hours of music, recipes, and household cleaning tips. As part of her McMenamins Great Northwest Music Tour, Cook plays Edgefield's Blackberry Hall tonight and the Kennedy School gym on Thursday, January 27. DAVID SCHMADER

COPY, HEAD LIKE A KITE, TAPE DECK MOUNTAIN
(Mississippi Studios, 3939 N Mississippi) Tape Deck Mountain resides somewhere between the lush, utopian garden and the shambolic dystopian wasteland of your imagination. Actually, this duo hails from San Diego, and, no, I don't have the slightest idea what their name means. I do know that these chaps like to make a racket, albeit a gentler racket that lies just beneath a layer of shoegaze haze. Vocals are secondary, showing up sporadically through distorted lenses. Fortunately, Tape Deck Mountain knows about dynamics. Instead of being intent on lulling you to sleep, they sneak in a wall of guitar noise just as your eyelids start to grow heavy. And as you'll hear on the band's latest Secret Serf EP, they can also work in a hook or two. Tape Deck Mountain might just be the band of your dreams, and your nightmares as well. MARK LORE

SATURDAY 1/22

ON THE STAIRS, TEAM EVIL, IVAN AND ALYOSHA, PETOSKEY

(Doug Fir, 830 E Burnside) Read about On The Stairs.

PICKATHON BENEFEST: CORIN TUCKER BAND, OLD LIGHT, ZOO ANIMAL

(Mississippi Studios, 3939 N Mississippi) Did you know that Buckman Elementary is the only public arts-focused elementary school in Portland? That means less limbo, more interpretive dance and marimba classes, and with such high standards of artistic nourishment comes a tab that the state of Oregon does not pick up. So naturally, the great minds behind Pickathon—the damned-near utopian summer music festival on Pendarvis Farm—caught wind of the school's annual fundraising efforts and created Benefest, a four-part benefit festival to take place over the course of the next month in selected venues around town. For the first installation, locals the Corin Tucker Band and Old Light—once described by John Dwyer (Thee Oh Sees) as "Crosby, Stills and Nash, if they didn't suck"—will take the stage at Mississippi Studios. And while $25 might seem a hefty price tag, saving a child's young, impressionable ears from Chubby Checker's "Limbo Rock" is absolutely priceless. RAQUEL NASSER Also see My, What a Busy Week!

CLIMBER, HELLO MORNING, LITTLE BEIRUT

(Alberta Rose Theatre, 3000 NE Alberta) The men of Hello Morning are such a seasoned group of local musicians that I find it interesting that their name evokes the new start of a breaking dawn. But hey, it works. Hello Morning seems to have created something fresh among the rich histories of its four members, each of whom has previously put in time with established local acts such as Boy Eats Drum Machine and Jonah. The combined powers of Kevin Breuner, Peter Swanson, Henry Curl, and Ben Sims results in an extremely tight, exciting sound, varying from anthemic love songs like "Come Home" (currently available for free download on their Facebook page) to heart-racing stadium rock numbers like "Coldbreakers" (as recently heard in a Seattle Seahawks ad). Their latest recording, A Fiction, will be out later this year. MARANDA BISH

CAFETERIA DANCE FEVER, GUANTANAMO BAYWATCH

(Record Room, 8 NE Killingsworth) Rumors of Cafeteria Dance Fever's demise are grossly exaggerated. While the Portland punk-party-pus-pop band announced they were playing their final show in October 2009, they haven't let a simple thing like a breakup keep them down. In fact, they've got a new 7-inch single—the five-song, attention-span-less "Where's My Bleach?" which includes their poppiest song to date, the fuzz-drippy "Satanic Hyena"—and they're marking the occasion with a release show at Portland's finest record-store-cum-bar, the Record Room. Following countless basement shows, a slew of vinyl releases, two European tours, and one supposed breakup, it seems like there's little left to stand in Cafeteria Dance Fever's path, including taste: Their wicked catalog of one-minute punk blasts (all released on Hovercraft, the label of CFD's Mark and Tim Janchar) has developed its own gravity, becoming weirdly respectable in its own way—which, I'm sure, is the last thing Cafeteria Dance Fever was expecting. NL

POH-HOP: OLDOMINION, MOKA ONLY, LIVING PROOF, RAISE THE BRIDGES, GRYNCH, SERGE SEVERE, HIVES INQUIRY SQUAD, LUCK-ONE

(Someday Lounge, 125 NW 5th) Oldominion is a colossal crew made up of more than 20 emcees, artists, and producers from the Pacific Northwest. With a group that size, you never know what to expect; even if only half the collective shows up to perform, it's fun to marvel at how they'll all fit on the same stage. Despite Oldominion's intimidating size they shatter the hiphop cliché of two or three guys on the mic while the rest just wave towels and do hype-man duty the entirety of the set. Each artist has a role, and while some might be more diminished than others, everyone has their place within the grand scheme of an Oldominion performance. For those who usually sleep on the opening acts, every last one of these emcees are also headliners in their own right, making this one of the most solid hiphop bills in recent history. RYAN FEIGH

THE MEAN JEANS, CAT FANCY!

(Hungry Tiger Too, 207 SE 12th) Local rock and roll outfit Cat Fancy! (yes, it needs to be exclaimed) announce their intentions with the phrase "it's time to take out the space trash." They do indeed blast a heavy dose of ever so fuzzed-out space rock into the universe, with a few interesting twists. Bandleader Automne Zingg aligns her garage/mod project with staunch dedication to counterculture and feminism, giving their music a sharp swerve that's far from the benign bands solely in it for the aesthetic. And although the music of Cat Fancy! shares the reverb-heavy bedroom pop sounds of popular female-fronted groups like the Dum Dum Girls and Best Coast, Cat Fancy! oozes with sights and sounds of Portland's particular underground culture, making them a band all our own. MB

SUNDAY 1/23

BLOWFLY, WITCHBURN

(Dante's, 1 SW 3rd) One of the benefits of the California penal system is that most prisons are equipped with ancient AB Dick presses, where model prisoners can learn a trade and get a leg-up on employment once released. This means that when you work at an offset print shop in California, a substantial amount of your coworkers are likely to have served time at one point in their lives. Such was the case for myself and a jovial ex-con named Ernest, an unlikely pairing who spent hours working in a San Diego print shop together. While our lives had little in common, Ernest and myself established an amicable middle ground in the music of Blowfly. While I enjoyed the legendary pornographic rapper's back story—a coveted session musician who penned bawdy sexual funk songs on the side—Ernest just preferred to sing along loudly with such numbers as "Girl Let Me Cum in Your Mouth" and "The First Black President" (the latter of which is most definitely not about Obama). Blowfly turns 66 years old next month, and for the sake of all us former AB Dick press operators, let's hope the man doesn't hang up his mask and cape anytime soon. EAC

MONDAY 1/24

LOUDON WAINWRIGHT III

(Aladdin Theater, 3017 SE Milwaukie) It's odd that when he was young, Loudon Wainwright III was still old. The sire to Rufus, Martha, and Lucy Wainwright Roche, the singer/actor penned countless songs about the blunt reality of watching his relationships disintegrate, his children drift away, and the pains of watching your parents pass (the latter most notably from 2001's underrated Last Man on Earth). Don't be distracted by his reputation as the singing jester from M*A*S*H, or from his acting work in that one CGI hamster movie—Wainwright can hit a nerve with the best of them, crafting magnificent songs that teeter the line between the promise of youth and the acceptance of growing old. Recently Wainwright headed the loving tribute to the legendary Charlie Poole with the double-disc High Wide & Lonesome and self-released a new solo work, 10 Songs for the New Depression, which touches on both our current economic malaise and the struggles of the Great Depression. Even the man's new work is somehow still old. EAC Also see My, What a Busy Week!

TUESDAY 1/25

OLD 97'S, LANGHORNE SLIM

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

WEDNESDAY 1/26

RA RA RIOT, GIVERS, PEPPER RABBIT

(Hawthorne Theatre, 1507 SE 39th) See My, What a Busy Week!

DARWIN DEEZ, FOL CHEN, FRIENDS

(Holocene, 1001 SE Morrison) We all hide behind something. Fol Chen are a secretive clan of artistic electro-prog rockers who keep their identities a secret in band photos—onstage in their coordinated pastel outfits they are far more transparent—yet create a complex, open-ended sound that is both inviting and warm (like getting a hug from Liars). Darwin Deez chooses to hide out in the open behind a Ned Flanders mustache and limp perm, the pair of which is either appealing or appalling, all depending on your acceptance of vaguely ironic facial hair. But beyond the 'stache, Deez's bouncy pop songs are unassuming in nature, yet absolutely infectious to the ear, a simple formula the hyperactive New York singer has mastered. Songs this good won't stay hidden for long. EAC

WEEN

(Crystal Ballroom, 1332 W Burnside) While you weren't paying attention, Ween became a fucking cottage industry, a cult band that's blown up in slow motion. So here we are now in 2011, and Ween are playing big, respectable houses without much airplay or media attention. I once thought that Ween squandered too much of their considerable talent on juvenile musical pastiche and shock-jock lyrics. But now, 20-plus years into their career, Ween have proved themselves to be seriously accomplished, eclectic musicians who simply had a periodic weakness for scatological tomfoolery and half-assed genre parodies. When they want to, which has been happening with greater frequency over the last 15 years, Ween can pen gorgeous, moving rock songs with serious psychedelic ramifications (e.g., "A Tear for Eddie," "Springtheme," "Marble Tulip Juicy Tree," and much of The Mollusk). The brainiacs in Autechre consider Ween geniuses, and there's some truth in that. DAVE SEGAL