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This Week's Music Previews

MOUNT EERIE Mississippi Studios, 4/11

MOUNT EERIE Mississippi Studios, 4/11

WEDNESDAY 4/10

SOUL'D OUT: GHOSTFACE KILLAH, ADRIAN YOUNGE'S VENICE DAWN
(Mississippi Studios, 3939 N Mississippi) See My, What a Busy Week!, and read our guide to the Soul'd Out Music Festival.

SOUL'D OUT: DĀM-FUNK, STARSHIP CONNECTION, SUZANNE KRAFT
(Star Theater, 13 NW 6th) See My, What a Busy Week!, and read our guide to the Soul'd Out Music Festival.

THURSDAY 4/11

GRRRL FRONT FEST
(Slabtown, 1033 NW 16th) See My, What a Busy Week!.

NUCULAR AMINALS, GALLONS, HAUNTED HORSES
(The Know, 2026 NE Alberta) Nucular Aminals spent most of March touring Europe, and tonight's homecoming show also doubles as the release show for their latest 7-inch single, out on Hovercraft. The A-side, "Alice Day," and the B-side, "Come On," are two of a kind—mellow but miffed minor-key rock with the band's serious pop chops tempered by their macabre artiness. Nucular Aminals' last album, November's terrific Start from an End, was their best work to date, which is saying a lot for a band that has released plenty of material but no weak sides to speak of. "Alice Day" continues that trend, making pop weirdness that's not obvious, but intriguing enough to want to crawl around inside of for a while. NED LANNAMANN

MOUNT EERIE, ASHLEY ERIKSSON, LIKE A VILLAIN
(Mississippi Studios, 3939 N Mississippi) Mount Eerie takes effort. Phil Elverum's fragile vocals seem to be the only constant among his evolving and academic albums. I admit that I had to try to get past the feeling that his music is over my head. But it was ultimately worth it. Because each album, no matter how disparate, is built on the same bedrock of warmth, of seeking connections in a confusing world. Another unifying factor is the Pacific Northwest. Elverum is from Anacortes, and on last year's two LPs, Ocean Roar and Clear Moon, he explores two sides of his island. On Clear Moon, anxiously ambient overlapping layers of guitar evoke an environment that is fertile and soothing, with an awareness of viciousness and transience. With thick, dark drones, big guitars, and organs, Ocean's Roar is a more straightforward interpretation of the Pacific. Opening are Ashley Eriksson, of Olympia-based pop band LAKE, and the unsettling and pristine Like a Villain. REBECCA WILSON

DINOSAUR JR., THE SHRINE
(Wonder Ballroom, 128 NE Russell) I first saw Dinosaur Jr. at the Crystal Ballroom in 2007, when the band was touring in support of their comeback album, Beyond. Being the perspicacious rock dork I was and still am, I was pretty well acquainted with Dino by that point. My expectations weren't exactly nebulous. I knew they fucking rocked. But, at the risk of repeating a stupid cliché usually associated with J. Mascis & Co., it was probably the loudest show I had ever been to. Of course, since then I've been to plenty of shows that were infinitely louder (most of which have occurred in basements), but that show in particular was significant because it was the first really loud show I had ever been to. They say you never forget your first time, and they're right—tinnitus is a permanent condition. MORGAN TROPER

ANIMAL EYES, BEAR AND MOOSE, PAPER BRAIN
(Doug Fir, 830 E Burnside) Animal Eyes have been tearing apart the Portland scene for well over a year now. If you haven't seen them play, you've seen their name plastered on every telephone pole around town. To say they've been working hard is an understatement, as every time I've seen them live, their performance is better than the last. As they continue to build their bursting, gung-ho rock vibe, their compositions become more intricate and clean, giving weight to the old saying—practice makes perfect. Catch them for their first show at the Doug Fir, accompanied by rose-hued, happy ballads by Paper Brain. RACHEL MILBAUER

FRIDAY 4/12

GRRRL FRONT FEST
(Slabtown, 1033 NW 16th) See My, What a Busy Week!.

BENDER: CHEATER SLICKS, MISSING MONUMENTS & MORE
(Star Theater, 13 NW 6th) See My, What a Busy Week!, and read our guide to the Bender.

RLLRBLL, KOONDA HOLAA, MUSTAPHAMOND, KOMAL SA
(Kenton Club, 2025 N Kilpatrick) Koonda Holaa, also known as Kamilsky—actually, Czech-born musician Kamil Kruta—has a long and confusing résumé, including stints with the Residents and Pseudo Pseudo, time in Czechoslovakian prison just before the Velvet Revolution, and collaborations with X's Exene Cervenka and others. While this is all very interesting, Koonda Holaa and the Beetchees' most recent album, 2009's 10 Acres of the Finest Sand, speaks for itself. It's the sound of a dark harvest of something mystical from familiar folk tropes, with Kamilsky's deep voice both inviting and terrifying; the record's mix of organic and bizarre instrumentation sounds both pan-global and entirely otherworldly. Kamilsky has been in the States for many years now, but his music has so many widespread roots that it's unlike anything you've ever heard. This guy might be a genius. NL

THE PROTONS, PRIMITIVE IDOLS, 42 FORD PREFECT
(East End, 203 SE Grand) Surf rock in Portland takes on a slightly darker bent than if a band was from, say, Miami. Surprisingly, there's no shortage of it here—Guantanamo Baywatch is the most notable band to creep its way in with the hipster crowd. The Protons are working on it, too, and they might just get there with the release of their latest The Explanatory Gap EP. It's noisy and otherworldly while adhering to the blueprint laid out by the Surfaris back when your grandparents were hip. Basically, surf music might be better here than anywhere else in the world. There's just something about songs inspired by the beach that are actually written and performed in a dark, moldy basement. MARK LORE

COCK BLOCK: PUNISHER, MISS VIXEN, ANNA LANGLEY, LAVONNE LOVE
(Groove Suite, 440 NW Glisan) The last Cock Block goes out with a nice big bang before it moves on to its next venue (yet to be determined), with Punisher—AKA Michelle Herrmann—on the decks. Known for busting out celebrated live performances with drum machines and synthesizers as well as work behind the turntables, Herrmann is a prolific producer with over 40 releases under her belt and a career that spans more than 20 years in the dance music industry. She's been steadily building her reputation as founder of not one, but two lauded techno imprints: Hej Records and Seismic Records Detroit, in addition to performing all over the world alongside electronic music greats; her signature style is sure to make you get down. CHRISTINA BROUSSARD

SATURDAY 4/13

GRRRL FRONT FEST
(Slabtown, 1033 NW 16th) See My, What a Busy Week!.

BENDER: THE CYNICS, MONOSHOCK & MORE
(Star Theater, 13 NW 6th) See My, What a Busy Week!, and read our guide to the Bender.

SOUL'D OUT: SHY GIRLS, SAPIENT, MAGIC FADES
(Holocene, 1001 SE Morrison) See My, What a Busy Week!, and read our guide to the Soul'd Out Music Festival.

SOUL'D OUT: JUST PEOPLE, VIOLET ISLE, NOVOSTI
(Doug Fir, 830 E Burnside) Taking a page from the well-worn Winger playbook, Jov Novosti has craftily named his band Novosti after himself, but unlike Kip & Co., Novosti makes subtle, penetrating music that's both beautiful and exhilarating. Novosti's new record, the revealing seven-song Love & Lashes, falls somewhere in between an EP and a full-length, but despite its short duration, it doesn't lack for anything. With producer Drew Grow casting a rust-colored sheen over the recording, the songs are muddy and bloody, allowing themselves to be buffeted by the wind before fighting back with conviction. Novosti's record also includes a guest vocal by Luz Elena Mendoza of Y La Bamba at her spookiest—she'll perform with Novasti at tonight's release show, along with drummer Kurt Caywood and members of No Kind of Rider. NL

THE SHIVAS, MISTER TANG
(Bunk Bar, 1028 SE Water) If you still haven't heard the Shivas, tonight's Bunk Bar set is liable to provide one of the Portland-area garage-pop group's more rollicking performances. After all, their LP Whiteout receives a vinyl re-release April 30 on venerable Northwest imprint K Records, and it's nearly spring! That's important, because Whiteout is pure summertime fun from start to finish (it works for spring, too), with fuzzy, reckless bouts of surf-punk that transcend the calculated cool of genre saboteurs and inject a well-translated love for rock 'n' roll. Wear your sunglasses at night. Leave the baggage at home. Dance parties are encouraged. The Shivas might be Portland's best band. There, I said it. RYAN J. PRADO

SUNDAY 4/14

ORGAN GRINDERS: HÄXAN: JAGGERY, WALTER SICKERT AND THE ARMY OF BROKEN TOYS
(Hollywood Theatre, 4122 NE Sandy) See My, What a Busy Week!

GRRRL FRONT FEST
(Slabtown, 1033 NW 16th) See My, What a Busy Week!.

BENDER: BIG EYES, BLACK BANANAS & MORE
(Star Theater, 13 NW 6th) See My, What a Busy Week!, and read our guide to the Bender.

SOUL'D OUT: BOOKER T. JONES, CHARLIE HUNTER, CARLTON JACKSON
(Dante's, 350 W Burnside) Read our guide to the Soul'd Out Music Festival.

SUFFOCATION, EXHUMED, JUNGLE ROT, RINGS OF SATURN, ADMIRON, LORD OF WAR, ASSYRIA
(Hawthorne Theatre, 1507 SE César E. Chávez) You know you're getting old when you start sentences with the words "back in my day," but honestly, seven bands on one bill that's not at an outdoor venue with elephant ears and overflowing port-o-potties? Back in my day, three bands was enough and four was CRAZY! I don't even think the youngsters these days have that kind of energy, considering they poke those iThingys all day instead of running and jumping. I must be going through a mid-metal life crisis or something. Suffocation's latest brutalizer, Pinnacle of Bedlam, definitely tingles my death-metal senses as much as their classic Effigy of the Forgotten, and Exhumed's triumphant return of late is thoroughly welcomed, but I just don't think I have the stamina for six-plus hours of metal under one roof. Unless there's a two-hour intermission with a comfy couch I can nap on? ARIS WALES

AGALLOCH, SUTEKH HEXEN
(Mississippi Studios, 3939 N Mississippi) Over the past decade black metal has moved past being a soundtrack to the illegal extracurricular activities of groups of Norwegian misfits. A lot of that change has to do with John Haughm and his longtime Portland metal band Agalloch, which he formed back in 1995. In that time they've remained constant, if not exactly prolific, without compromising their sound. Agalloch's Faustian Echoes EP—which consists of one 21-minute song—is the most theatrical piece of music Agalloch has recorded. It's as bookish as it is black. Agalloch's longevity is a testament to a band that has carved out a name for itself without actually carving its name into anything, or anybody. ML

BAD RELIGION, THE BRONX, POLAR BEAR CLUB
(Roseland, 8 NW 6th) Bad Religion's 16th(!) album, True North, is tough to distinguish from any release since ace studio drummer Brooks Wackerman joined the ranks in 2002 on The Process of Belief. The band, now in its fifth decade together(!!) is undoubtedly a pole-setter for contemporary punk rock, and probably more importantly, a lightning rod for clear, analytical lyrical dissertations on everything from socio-economics, theology, American politics, and more, thanks to frontman Greg Graffin's enormo-brain. The LP's single, "Fuck You" (timing is everything; forget you, Cee-Lo!), retains the band's layered vocal harmonies, blistering pace, in-your-face guitars and smart, biting commentary; the difference is that it's not really very dangerous anymore. But dude! It's Bad Religion! Make sure to get there early to witness the return of the Bronx, too; their new album, The Bronx (good luck finding the right one; they're all self-titled) is sort of dangerous-sounding. RJP

MONDAY 4/15

SAVAGES, NO BRA
(Bunk Bar, 1028 SE Water) See My, What a Busy Week!

TUESDAY 4/16

NICK JAINA
(Music Millennium, 3158 E Burnside) See My, What a Busy Week!

JOHNNY MARR, ALAMAR
(Aladdin Theater, 3017 SE Milwaukie) Read our article on Johnny Marr.

THE TELESCOPES, LSD AND THE SEARCH FOR GOD, NIGHT BEATS
(Dante's, 350 W Burnside) In the late '80s and early '90s, UK band the Telescopes challenged Spacemen 3 and Loop for space-rock supremacy. Stephen Lawrie and company veered more toward Loop's Stooges-esque savagery than S3's more devotional, stellar hymns: Their early songs seesawed between psychotic psych-rock turmoil and dreamy yet unnerving bliss-outs. When the 'Scopes signed to Creation Records, they embraced '60s California psychedelia and even executed an ebullient cover of Charles Manson's (via the Beach Boys) "Never Learn Not to Love." Recent recordings prove that the Telescopes haven't softened in their advanced age, with gritty forays into abstract noise and hypnotic, enigmatic rock composition. LSD and the Search for God's name sets you up for unrealistic expectations. The San Francisco band don't live up to their handle, but their self-titled 2007 EP on Randall Nieman's Mind Expansion label radiates understated beauty. Its five songs conjure a swirling magenta blur of rock somewhere between Souvlaki-era Slowdive and My Bloody Valentine circa Loveless. The hooks and taffeta male/female vocals are submerged in FX'd drones, coaxing that familiar aura of mystery that shoegaze fans lurve. DAVE SEGAL

THE GASLIGHT ANTHEM, MATT MAYS, KENNY FLETCHER
(Wonder Ballroom, 128 NE Russell) At its most beloved, punk music has a distinct sense of humor underlying tight-as-a-tick licks and razor sharp songwriting. And that's why the Gaslight Anthem become better as they evolve away from punk and toward roots rock. This is a band as earnest as their name; there is no sense of irony waiting in the wings. And that's okay. At their best, they call to mind another perpetually earnest (and exceptionally brilliant) songwriter also from New Jersey. Apparently Brian Fallon dislikes comparisons to this guitar-wielding megastar, but embrace your roots, man, because that's when you're at your best. On last year's Handwritten, the Gaslight Anthem wear their influences a little too glaringly—there is a song called "Howl" and there is also an uncomfortably faithful cover/impression of Nirvana's "Sliver." However, the more Fallon embraces his inner Midwesterner and his working man's passion, the more believable the tunes. RW

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