ALEJANDRO ESCOVEDO Doug Fir, 8/13
Todd Wolfson

THURSDAY 8/9

INTO THE WOODS QUARTERLY: AAN, PURE BATHING CULTURE, WL, SHY GIRLS, DJ ZACK, DJ SISTER SISTER

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

SIGUR RÓS, JULIA HOLTER

(Edgefield, 2126 SW Halsey, Troutdale) Read our article on Sigur Rós.

SHONEN KNIFE, THE MALLARD, OH DARLING

(Dante's, 1 SW 3rd) Let's face it: Kurt Cobain was an iconoclast who celebrated the odd and glorified technical incompetence (a lot like Frank Zappa actually, who could be considered Cobain's antecedent in that sense). It's not an exaggeration to say that without him, my generation generally would not know or care about Daniel Johnston or the Raincoats. Among the misfits Cobain revered are the Japanese pop-punk band Shonen Knife, who happen to be my personal favorite of his personal favorites. The band's latest, and 18th, record, Pop Tune, is more of the glorious same: awful musicianship and exceptional pop sensibilities (the title track might be the best—oh Christ, here it comes—pop tune I've heard all summer). If you don't like it, you just don't understand it. MORGAN TROPER

ASSEMBLY OF LIGHT CHOIR, THE BODY, BRAVEYOUNG, SIOUX

(Plan B, 1305 SE 8th) Loud, abrasive metal has gone and done it again. The Body, a two-piece droney-noisy-doomey outfit from Providence who recently relocated to Portland, pushed the boundaries with their art and caught the ears of a few squares at NPR and the New York Times. Their recent release, All The Waters of the Earth Turn To Blood, features the talents of the Assembly of Light, an all-female choir that also hails from Providence. The Body's harsh riffs and panicked, shrill vocals blending with the beautiful belting of more than a dozen ladies is indeed haunting, so it's no wonder it perked some unlikely ears. Heavy music is no stranger to choirs and classical arrangements, but there's never been a collaboration this frightening before. It's a unique, fascinating meld that sends chills up your spine while it punches you in the stomach. ARIS WALES

FRIDAY 8/10

THE GREAT IDEA: QUASI, TYPHOON, THE BUILDERS AND THE BUTCHERS & MORE

(Enchanted Forest, 8642 Enchanted Way SE, Turner) See My, What a Busy Week!, and read our article on the Great Idea Festival.

ROGER HODGSON

(Oregon Zoo, 4001 SW Canyon) Read our article on Roger Hodgson.

CHAMPAGNE CHAMPAGNE, THE KNUX, CHICHARONES, CLOUDY OCTOBER

(Ted's, 231 SW Ankeny) Champagne Champagne are self-described "punk-rap-shoegazers" from Seattle who put just as much effort into partying as they do in creating high-energy hiphop. The Knux are the Hollywood duo of brothers Alvin and Kentrell Lindsey, whose formative years in New Orleans helped influence and shape their sound: namely, a musical gumbo that is unmistakably rap music, but filtered through their love of electro, new wave, and classic rock. Hometown hiphop heroes the Chicharones never fail to deliver an amazing live show, which must truly be seen to be believed. A healthy dose of humor combined with costumes, dance moves, and a tight backing band once led Spin magazine to dub them "the Best Bar Band in America." They also just returned from a five-week nationwide tour promoting their latest release, Swine Flew, so their stage show should be tighter than ever. RYAN FEIGH

THE ENGLISH BEAT, NATALIE WOULDN'T

(Doug Fir, 830 E Burnside) 2-Tone forebears the English Beat (as they are known as in America, due to a trademark-related oversight on their part) are one of those bands that are so fortunate to not have released more than a few albums. Four, to be exact, including an essential B-sides and assorted curios compilation, What Is Beat?, released after the band's initial breakup. I say fortunate because those albums are all pretty great, and they never got the opportunity to burn the whole legacy to the ground by putting out a bad one, which is so unusual among older bands (and mostly inevitable, as brilliance is finite). So expect only to hear the good stuff tonight ("Tears of a Clown," "Can't Get Used to Losing You," and of course, "Save It for Later"). Frontman Dave Wakeling is also one of the genre's most engaging frontmen, and from the looks of things he hasn't lost an ounce of energy. MT

FRANZ FERDINAND, CARNIVORES

(Wonder Ballroom, 128 NE Russell) By all accounts, Franz Ferdinand are planning a "comeback" this year. And by most accounts this is a good thing. The Scottish quartet hasn't released anything new in over three years (and anything interesting in even longer), leaving dance floors bare and bloggers feeling a little empty inside. But it really is difficult not to like Franz Ferdinand—the band can make even the squarest white male want to get out and dance, while still satisfying the rock-'n'-roller inside who likes angular guitars and pop hooks. They're more fun than anything America has called dance music in the past decade. Maybe "comeback" is the right word after all. MARK LORE

SATURDAY 8/11

FIFTY: DJ ARTHUR M, DJ BOBBY DANGEROUS, DJ HANUKKAH MIRACLE

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

PIERCED ARROWS, SUICIDE NOTES, NO TOMORROW BOYS

(Slabtown, 1033 NW 16th) With galloping drums and an opening line of "Let's go, let's go, let's go... to the beach!" the Suicide Notes have their sights set on your summertime. The rest of "Beach Song," the B-side of the Portland group's brand new single, has a similar element of party-hearty menace: By way of three-part girl harmonies, some go-go party vibes, and a thick punk punch, the Suicide Notes are going to make sure that you will have a good time, dammit. "Beach Song" surfs along, obtaining Who-like power chords and an extended power-pop coda along the way, and turns into a veritable epic—a marked contrast to the abbreviated amphetamine rush of A-side "Suicide Note," a breakup song that's about as black as black humor gets. The Suicide Notes celebrate the 7-inch's release tonight with the downright heroic Pierced Arrows, who are utterly incapable of playing a disappointing show. NED LANNAMANN

MURDER BY DEATH, HA HA TONKA, CORY CHISEL AND THE WANDERING SONS

(Dante's, 1 SW 3rd) It could be due to the fact that I just finished watching the 2010 Coen Brothers remake of True Grit, but the vocals on Murder by Death's "White Noise," from 2010's Good Morning, Magpie, sound like what would result from getting a drunk Jeff Bridges to slur cowboy poetry. A low, cobwebbed voice repeatedly asks the listener to meet in a valley while the band beneath pioneers a dark-sky, low-tuned Americana. It's eerie, but interestingly engaging—and ominous enough to soundtrack the rise of some living thing from a bayou at midnight. But I address that song knowing it's only a recent single in their hearty history of releases; their sixth album, Bitter Drink, Bitter Moon, comes out next month. These guys have been working nonstop since 2000, and have more or less stayed true to the diet folk-punk sound they became known for upon their inception. JONATHAN MAGDALENO

FESTIVAL OF AMERICANA: NICK JAINA, THE FEATURES, THE PARSON RED HEADS, THE MOONDOGGIES & MORE

(Grand Lodge, 3505 Pacific, Forest Grove) In just its second year, McMenamins' Festival of Americana has cornered the market on folks who aren't up to the time commitment, crowds, and expense of Pickathon. Judging by the lineup, these people include aging hippies who want to revisit their festival days alongside their children and grandchildren. The festival kicks off on Friday with Garcia Birthday Band, who interpret (not cover!) the Grateful Dead, also an apparent influence on one of the festival's youngest bands, the Moondoggies out of Seattle, who play Saturday. But the psychedelic jams end there. Tennessee funk band the Features augment what is otherwise a Northwest-heavy bill: Nick Jaina, with his heart on his sleeve; the tireless Freak Mountain Ramblers; Sassparilla, at the convergence of folk and punk; the Parson Red Heads, who have a cover of Nick Lowe's "Don't Lose Your Grip on Love" coming out on next month's Lowe Country tribute album; and the Shook Twins, with their close harmonies and loops by way of the Great Depression. REBECCA WILSON

HEAVY KINGDOM with WINO and CONNY OCHS, MIKE SCHEIDT, AERIAL RUIN

(Rotture, 315 SE 3rd) Scott "Wino" Weinrich has the Midas touch. He's been cranking out tunes since the '70s, and hasn't missed a step yet. The list of influential bands in the stoner/doom genre that he started, or belonged to, grows daily. A couple years ago, Wino joined the ranks of other harbingers of heaviness like Scott Kelly and Mike Scheidt, by trading his full stack and pedal board for an acoustic guitar. He released Adrift, a strikingly powerful acoustic record that features his gruff and grizzled style (mostly) unplugged. The acoustic experiment seems to be successful for Wino. So far this year he pumped out Labour of Love and Heavy Kingdom with German singer/songwriter Conny Ochs. Fans of Wino know that he has always had something political or spiritual to say through his music, and with his new acoustic persona, he seems to have found messages important enough to put subtly, instead of blasted into space on a fuzzed out riff. Just because Wino doesn't have a couple thousand watts behind him doesn't mean he can't be heavy. AW

PATAHA HISS, HEY LOVER, PISS TEST

(The Know, 2026 NE Alberta) The bubblegum blitzkrieg bop of Pataha Hiss eschews the most familiar element of garage rock—the guitar—in favor of buzzing organ and earthquake bass. With just a handful of chords and tons of attitude, the trio invokes a veritable sugar buzz on their new four-song 7-inch, Dirrty Love, committing a couple pop gems ("Dear Joey," "Glad to See You Go") to disc along the way. It's a super fun record, bound to add some cheeky sleaze to even the most uptight dance party, and the group plays their long-awaited hometown record release show after touring through California last month. Released by the reliable Hovercraft label, Dirrty Love basically zooms out of the speakers ready for action, and fittingly, Pataha Hiss' show tonight is going to be a crushingly good bash. NL

SUNDAY 8/12

FILMUSIK: PLAN 9 FROM OUTER SPACE: HEATHER PERKINS, CLASSICAL REVOLUTION STRING QUARTET

(Washington Park, SW Park) See My, What a Busy Week!

ONRA, MATTHEWDAVID

(Mississippi Studios, 3939 N Mississippi) Paris producer Onra (AKA Arnaud Bernard) fuses advanced-degree hiphop with sexy-mofo R&B like only a hot French dude can. Prepare to drop them drawz. LA beatmaker Matthewdavid has won the heart and mind of Brainfeeder Records boss Flying Lotus with cuts that take post-hiphop maneuvers into trippy, hypnotic zones. Cop his aptly titled 2011 album, Outmind. DAVE SEGAL

MONDAY 8/13

THE MEMORIES, K-TEL '79, CORAL STABZ

(Valentine's, 232 SW Ankeny) See My, What a Busy Week!

ALEJANDRO ESCOVEDO

(Doug Fir, 830 E Burnside) Whatever I'm doing at age 61—it'll be long after the final death throe of print media's ugly, protracted demise—I'm hoping I sound half as energized as Alejandro Escovedo does on his latest record, Big Station. (I'm also hoping for robots.) The Texas songwriter, who cheated death last decade by defeating hepatitis after having already written a lifetime's worth of great songs, keeps things simple on Big Station, opting for a blaring, big-party vibe on much of the record. The lovely, strumming "Bottom of the World" is excellent fan bait, but the record's most interesting moments are when Escovedo tests his already spacious boundaries, as on thumping album opener "Man of the World," which would have been a huge hit for John Cougar Mellencamp in 1985, and slinky closer "Sabor a Mi," Escovedo's first song recorded in Spanish. Note that tonight's show starts at 8, an hour earlier than usual for the Doug Fir. NL

TORCHE, LOZEN, NORSKA

(Rotture, 315 SE 3rd) To these ears, Miami heavy rock four-piece Torche is pure ear candy (as opposed to the pure nose candy associated with Miami's KC and the Sunshine Band). Torche is heavy, and there are hooks aplenty, and the production is as squeaky clean as a goddamn Rihanna single. My 13-year-old self would have prematurely ejaculated upon hearing this band. These current old bones—only a slight variation of my teenage self—likes them, too. They're what Dave Grohl and his Foo Fighters wish they sounded like: Able to impressively balance melody with metal, pop hooks with punk 'tude, and tongue-in-cheek with heart-on-sleeve—all summed up in the brilliant "Kiss Me Dudely." ML

TUESDAY 8/14

DREW GROW AND THE PASTORS' WIVES, SAD LITTLE MEN, PICTORIALS

(Ella Street Social Club, 714 SW 20th Pl) See My, What a Busy Week!

BRAINSTORM, SWAHILI, SUN ANGLE, DJ SAHELSOUNDS

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

TWIN SHADOW, POOLSIDE

(Doug Fir, 830 E Burnside) Brooklyn's George Lewis Jr. has made one of the most instantly enjoyable albums of 2012, especially if you came of musical age in the 1980s. Twin Shadow's second album, Confess, is composed of 10 perfectly wrought singles, one after the other—all the more impressive because Lewis produced it himself. He may not look like a geek, but he obviously is one. If you're one of those people who hears everything but the lyrics, you'd be forgiven for assuming Confess is a sexually aspirational/inspirational album: the thrilling synth swells, the soulful vocals, the fact that every song is directed toward a "you" who is at least as horny as she is rhetorical. The truth is more akin to a cautionary tale, a confession at its core—about hooking up, fucking people over, wanting to change, not being able to change. Being an asshole never sounded better. RW

WEDNESDAY 8/15

DREW GROW AND THE PASTORS' WIVES, THE DEVIL WHALE, THE ECOLOGY

(Ella Street Social Club, 714 SW 20th Pl) See My, What a Busy Week!

CHARLI XCX

(Doug Fir, 830 E Burnside) See My, What a Busy Week!

JACK WHITE, POKEY LAFARGE AND THE SOUTH CITY THREE

(Roseland, 1 Center Ct) Read our article on Jack White.

ST. JAMES/HANING/DUROCHE TRIO, THE TENSES AND SOFTCORE GIGGLES

(Revival Drum Shop, 1465 NE Prescott) Tim DuRoche, jazz drummer and composer of Portland outfit Battle Hymns and Gardens, is a is joined for an intimate drum-shop performance by two other important figures in the improvisational jazz community: pianist Doug Haning and stand-up bassist Andre St. James—who presents a Mingus-inspired sound where tradition is creative innovation through improvisation. The Tenses is an affiliate of Portland's legendary experimental supergroup Smegma, who have spent decades captivating and/or confusing audiences by using found objects to create scapes where sounds can mingle in an intellectual playground. They're playing with Softcore Giggles, which must be a joint effort of experimental up-and-comers Soft Core Chess (Alieta Train and John Rau) and Giggles (Madelyn Villano and Train, again), which might involve delicate vocals and violin smashed between electronic samples for you to trip on. Recommended if you like: getting weird. ROCHELLE HUNTER