Up & Coming 

Highlights in Music the Week of April 19-25

CAVEMAN Mississippi Studios, 4/22

CAVEMAN Mississippi Studios, 4/22

THURSDAY 4/19

ORGAN GRINDERS: EZRA WEISS SEXTET
(Hollywood Theatre, 4122 NE Sandy) See My, What a Busy Week!

PONTIAK, ETERNAL TAPESTRY, MIKE SCHEIDT
(Mississippi Studios, 3939 N Mississippi) Read our article on Pontiak.

FRIDAY 4/20

HELP ME MAKE IT THROUGH THE NIGHT—SOUL COVERS OF COUNTRY CLASSICS: DJ ACTION SLACKS
(Sloan's Tavern, 36 N Russell) See My, What a Busy Week!

THE MEAN JEANS, THERAPISTS, BI MARKS, THE BUGS
(Eagles Lodge, 4904 SE Hawthorne) See My, What a Busy Week!, and read our article on The Mean Jeans.

YOB, NETHER REGIONS, DIESTO, NORSKA, WHITE ORANGE
(Mississippi Studios, 3939 N Mississippi) I have it on very good authority (stonerrock.com) that YOB is the single greatest band you could listen to on this hedonist holiday. The celebrated Eugene-based group delivers a rare performance tonight as part of a "doom metal lovefest" curated by Rynne Stump, an ex-booker-about-town back for tonight's show. YOB rose to royalty status in American metal after more than a decade of releasing solidly devastating albums, most recently 2011's lauded Atma, and touring both the US and abroad. Their live show desecrates all listeners with excruciating, 10-minute onslaughts, anchored by the beastly vocals of Mike Scheidt, whose practice of Israeli martial arts and Eastern religious traditions informs the band's cosmically profound lyrics and sound. Simultaneously, Aaron Rieseberg's pleading, plodding bass riffs will envelop you in infinite sonic universes while Travis Foster's percussion sets the obliterating pace. MARANDA BISH

SERGE SEVERE, TERMINILL, LUCK-ONE, BIG BANG, ELEVATED, JRITZ, SAYWORDS, DICTION ONE, DJ WELS, SOLE PROVIDER
(Ash Street Saloon, 225 SW Ash) Serge Severe isn't playing around. In 2011 the Portland emcee released Back on My Rhymes, a critical success that paid homage to the "beats, rhymes, and life" ethos and production of golden-era hiphop. Rather than rest on his laurels, Severe has three new releases planned for 2012, the first being his Service Without a Smile EP, which is being celebrated tonight. Those already familiar with Severe know what to expect lyrically: The precise delivery and punishing bars remain intact, although he also pulls off some impressive double-time delivery on the aptly named "Switchitup." Sonically, the updated production has a more diverse radio-ready soundscape courtesy of local producer Terminill. Local rappers take note, as Severe spits on the title track, "Maybe you should be a fan. 'Cause every single person doesn't have to be the man." RYAN FEIGH

SCREAMING FEMALES, HURRY UP, GUANTANAMO BAYWATCH
(The Know, 2026 NE Alberta) Screaming Females have come a long way since playing cramped basements in their hometown of New Brunswick, New Jersey. The three-piece—which includes a singular screaming female—boasts a concrete-slab rhythm section that allows a lot of room for axe-wielder Marissa Paternoster to do her thing, which is work spazzy riffs and even spazzier solos into twitchy and scratchy punk rock. Basically, Screaming Females are all that is right in rock music. Not to overstate things, but a band that plays rock with a shredder of a guitarist who uses her powers for good, not evil, is all right in my book. MARK LORE

SATURDAY 4/21

RECORD STORE DAY
(Everyday Music, 1313 W Burnside & 1931 NE Sandy; Jackpot Records, 203 SW 9th & 3574 SE Hawthorne; Music Millennium, 3158 E Burnside) See My, What a Busy Week!

SOUL'D OUT MUSIC FESTIVAL: WANDA JACKSON, SALLIE FORD AND THE SOUND OUTSIDE, LARRY AND HIS FLASK
(Roseland, 8 NW 6th) See My, What a Busy Week!

HORSE FEATHERS, WEINLAND, PETOSKEY
(Aladdin Theater, 3017 SE Milwaukie) Read our article on Horse Feathers.

Y LA BAMBA, RAVENNA WOODS, DEATH SONGS
(Doug Fir, 830 E Burnside) Read our article on Y La Bamba.

RECORD STORE DAY: THE HOODED HAGS, ORCA TEAM, THE SHIVAS, SURFS DRUGS, Y LA BAMBA, DEATH SONGS, NATHAN BAUMGARTNER, DJ TED, DJ BOB HAM, LISTEN LADY, MY HOLY SHOES, HERO WORSHIP
(Record Room, 8 NE Killingsworth) In Portland, Oregon, in the year 2012, the medium of the vinyl record continues to reign. There is a viable economy surrounding the buying and selling of LPs both classic and contemporary, and records are the format of choice for local bands—paralleled only, perhaps, by the cassette tape. An ever-growing body of recordings that chronicle the sounds of this time and place are available to us on vinyl, thanks in part to efforts from today's event participants. But because of dedicated labels like Stankhouse, whose founder Nick Capello will play in the Hooded Hags, talented technicians like Robert Comitz, whose Frawg Pound recording studio is responsible for a plethora of recent releases, and shops like the Record Room that has fused business, bar, and venue, Portland doesn't need Record Store Day. That in and of itself is a cause for celebration. MB

PILLOWTALK, ALGA RHYTHMS COLLECTIVE, ONUINU
(Someday Lounge, 125 NW 5th) Pillowtalk is coming to Portland at the perfect time. Their brand of soulful, organic house music is exactly the kind of thing you want to hear when everything around you is in full bloom and you can actually think about leaving your hoodie at home for the day while you head to the park to fall asleep in the sun. The San Francisco-based trio has releases out on Visionquest and Wolf + Lamb, two very fashionable record labels that are home to the slowed-down, R&B- and disco-inspired sounds that are taking over the hippest sectors of the underground dance music scene. While a lot of folks are jumping onboard with this trend, Pillowtalk stands apart. They have a variety of interesting influences (both modern and older) and a genuine musicality that results in a sound that's placidly retro in a current kind of way. AVA HEGEDUS

SUNDAY 4/22

DAMIEN JURADO, PETER WOLF CRIER, KELLI SCHAEFER
(Holocene, 1001 SE Morrison) Read our article on Damien Jurado.

BEHEMOTH, WATAIN, THE DEVIL'S BLOOD, IN SOLITUDE, STONEBURNER
(Hawthorne Theatre, 1507 SE 39th) When you see a band play, you expect to hear your favorite songs live and see their stage show. Your sense of smell never really enters into the equation unless the dude in front of you is farting all night. Watain's shows are a little different. There, you will see Erik Danielsson and his cronies drenched in blood and corpse paint, wearing clothes that look like they are rotting off their bodies. You will also hear their brand of Lucifer-approved Swedish black metal, and probably a little bit of Danielsson's Satanic rhetoric. The one thing that sets Watain apart from any live band you will ever witness is the stale stench of death they emit. If you think for a second that it can't be that bad, think of how bad it could be, and multiply that by 12 rotten goat heads on spikes, and five dudes who cover themselves in real gore nightly and shower as often as they pray to a Christian God. It stinks. And it's guaranteed to make you blow black boogers the next day. Enjoy! ARIS WALES Also read our article on the Devil's Blood.

SCHOOL OF SEVEN BELLS, EXITMUSIC
(Doug Fir, 830 E Burnside) I don't think this is what they were going for, but after a few listens, I realized that School of Seven Bells' Ghostory reminds me of nothing so much as a club remix of—no judgments—Sarah McLachlan's 1991 breakthrough album, Solace. It was then that I began to truly enjoy it. Like a vaguely familiar actress airbrushed on the cover of an expensive magazine, this third album invites even as it holds you at arm's length. Ghostory is more accessible than SVIIB's first two albums, especially the quirky 2008 debut, Alpinisms, with production that perfectly melds '80s synths and shoegaze into a package seemingly tailored for working out or, possibly, dancing. Alejandra Deheza's glossy vocals maintain a detachedly cheery note throughout, creating a pleasant start-to-finish cohesion. The album is apparently about a haunted child, but her ghosts are obviously the well-adjusted kind—and probably well dressed, too. REBECCA WILSON

CAVEMAN, AAN, PURE BATHING CULTURE
(Mississippi Studios, 3939 N Mississippi) The New York lads in Caveman are building a reputation as a ferocious, powerful live band, which seems a little at odds with the muted, pastel-hued jangle pop on their debut album, CoCo Beware. Still, there's no denying those melodies, which grow in sweep and magnitude the more you become familiar with them. There's something lovely at heart with Caveman, and with a singer who doubles on percussion and a guitarist who makes his own instruments, the band's sunset-swept brand of pop is irresistibly intriguing. If it's bolder and brasher in the live setting, all the better. Throw in opening sets by one of Portland's best art-rock workhorses (Aan) and one of Portland's best new bands (the beachcombing bliss-anthems of Pure Bathing Culture), and this is a win from start to finish. NED LANNAMANN

MONDAY 4/23

TRAGEDY, THE ESTRANGED, ARCTIC FLOWERS, DRUDEN
(Backspace, 115 NW 5th) See My, What a Busy Week!

FRANKIE ROSE, DIVE, ORCA TEAM, GHOST MOM
(East End, 203 SE Grand) Marrying the currently faddish, glossy synth-pop revival of all things '80s with her garage girl-group background (Vivian Girls, Dum Dum Girls), Frankie Rose's new solo record Interstellar is taut, approachable pop, filled with easygoing melodies and an involving blend of artificial synths with raw drums and guitar. Her multi-tracked vocals are the real draw, transforming lightweight tunes into compelling candy for the ears. Songs like "Gospel/Grace" are mini-epics, moving through a suite-like progression of ideas, neatly tied up in three minutes. If parts of the record sound a little restrained—"Pair of Wings" shrugs when it should soar—that shouldn't be an issue in the live setting. NL

TUESDAY 4/24

LADY RIZO AND HER ASSETTES
(Star Theater, 13 NW 6th) Read our article on Lady Rizo.

MATTHEW SWEET, THE SUMMER TWINS
(Aladdin Theater, 3017 SE Milwaukie) Current fashion dictates that middle-aged rockers play their most critically beloved albums before a live audience. Matthew Sweet's 11th studio album, Modern Art, was released last fall, so it could make sense for him to be touring behind that, rather than, say, an album that came out two decades ago. Unless of course that album is Girlfriend, his 1991 masterpiece of power pop. It's tempting to be cynical about a tour designed to exploit the epidemic of '90s nostalgia. But Girlfriend was a huge hit precisely because it spoke so candidly about being dumped on your ass, possibly the unifying thread of the human condition. By combining exceptional songwriting, early grunge, and a nostalgic leaning toward the guitar rock from his own childhood—the Byrds, Big Star, Neil Young—Sweet created an album that sounds as timeless as its theme of age-old heartbreak. RW Also see My, What a Busy Week!

CALVIN VALENTINE, TxE, MATTY, MIKEY VEGAZ, FLI BOI MOE
(Backspace, 115 NW 5th) TxE's official release party for their very well-received February album We Get It in True is tonight. After listening to the album all month and watching them creep onto Portland indie-rock bills over the last year, I think we're all ready to get it in true to some cold cuts, rhymes, and live production craft. These hometown hipster heartbreakers might make you consider installing a subwoofer on your fixie. The show gets started with Northwest rappers Matty, Fli Boi Moe, and Mikey Vegaz, and the party is hosted by TxE's in-house producer Calvin Valentine—if we're lucky maybe he'll bust out the famous talk-box. ROCHELLE HUNTER

COLDPLAY, METRONOMY, THE PIERCES
(Rose Garden, 1 Center Ct) What is there to say about Coldplay that hasn't already been said? They have the distinction of being arguably the biggest band in the world while simultaneously being one of the most detested. Chris Martin & Co. can also take credit for the mountains of horrible copycat bands that flooded the airwaves upon the success of 2002's A Rush of Blood to the Head. Probably not since Nirvana (okay, maybe Limp Bizkit) has a band so greatly influenced so many lesser bands' five minutes of fame. That said, Coldplay is still around, and they continue to divide the country more than any political party. Yet for some inexplicable reason, I'm kind of glad they're still here. ML

WEDNESDAY 4/25

LADY RIZO AND HER ASSETTES
(Star Theater, 13 NW 6th) Read our article on Lady Rizo.

SOUL'D OUT MUSIC FESTIVAL: ESPERANZA SPALDING, RADIO MUSIC SOCIETY
(Crystal Ballroom, 1332 W Burnside) Esperanza Spalding is a 27-year-old, multi-ethnic multi-instrumentalist from Portland who specializes in playing the double bass and writing poppy jazz songs that complement her fluttering but fully anchored voice. Last year she won a Grammy Award in the Best New Artist category and recently put out an album called Radio Music Society. She is also one of those artists who are so very talented and so very successful but fly above the radar of many music fans because her style and sound are so clean. It might be unfair, but it's a fact—people love a high-wire act with a bit of wobble, not just somebody strolling casually across a tightrope like it's no big deal. Spalding is a highly accomplished musician who lacks that gravel in the guts that some of us crave from our artists. She is awesome but not that exciting. (Yet.) She's a conundrum. BRENDAN KILEY Also see My, What a Busy Week!

TANLINES, REWARDS
(Doug Fir, 830 E Burnside) Brooklyn duo Tanlines features guitarist/vocalist Eric Emm (formerly of Storm and Stress and Don Caballero, along with Battles' Ian Williams), but Tanlines sound nothing like those hurly-burly math-rock groups. Rather, they're a streamlined, dreamy, dance-pop outfit who should appeal to more than dudes with serious demeanors and pocket protectors. On their 2012 debut full-length, Mixed Emotions, Tanlines' affinity for interesting percussive textures and oddly alluring melodies make them one of the more respectable acts coming out of Brooklyn's over-hyped scene. DFA Records artist Rewards (AKA Aaron Pfenning, formerly of Chairlift) deals in slicker, more escapist new-wave/new-romantic dance maneuvers. Check "Equal Dreams," a swanky collab with vocalist Solange Knowles, for proof. DAVE SEGAL

M83, I BREAK HORSES
(Roseland, 8 NW 6th) Anthony Gonzalez, the mastermind behind M83, has said that his sixth studio album and current masterpiece, Hurry Up, We're Dreaming, was inspired by the Smashing Pumpkins' Mellon Collie and the Infinite Sadness. It is undeniable that both are double albums, but it's hard to find many other similarities. Where Mellon Collie is a self-indulgent exercise in weltschmerz, Hurry Up crackles with synthy optimism. If Hurry Up is about dreams, they're really nice ones, the kind where you wake up full of good vibes. The carefully composed electronic elements are layered with vocals, woodwinds, and every conceivable type of percussion. Gonzalez even manages to include samples of boats and trains and children talking without any appearance of self-indulgence. It's possible that the ebullience owes something to Gonzalez having moved to LA from his native France before recording, but I think Justin Meldal-Johnsen, Beck's longtime bass player and Gonzalez's co-producer, had a little something to do with it. RW

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