W. Kamau Bell
Last time socio-political comedian W. Kamau Bell was in town was for his smart CNN travel show United Shades of America. He discussed gentrification—the good and the bad—on N Mississippi, asked a bearded local whether "hipster" was a dirty word, and even met with Black Portlanders' Intisar Abioto. Known for using his comedic curiosity to get through an interview with a KKK leader, expect Bell's stand-up show to be illuminating, approachable, and funny because it's accurate. JENNI MOORE
Aladdin Theater, 7:30pm, 10:30pm, $25
Portland Retro Gaming Expo
Since 2006, the Portland Retro Gaming expo—a weekend-long celebration of old-school video games—has been one of the funnest, geekiest events in town. Things to keep an eye out for this year include the Antiques Roadshow-inspired Retrogame Roadshow, the annual cosplay contest, tons of hard-to-find games, and panels featuring everyone from Atari programmers to RPG designers. Once you throw in the Classic Tetris World Championship, workshops, live music, and the sprawling Retrocade—which boasts a jaw-dropping number of cabinets, consoles, and pinball tables—you've got a great weekend. But because 2016 is a never-ending nightmare that will allow nothing good and pure to exist, all this comes with a condition: Avoid the events featuring one of the Expo's special guests, James Rolfe—better known to gamers as the obnoxious YouTuber "The Angry Video Game Nerd," and better known to everyone else as one of the jackasses behind last spring's misogynist anti-Ghostbusters campaign. Make no mistake: The Portland Retro Gaming Expo is still totally worth going to. But Rolfe typifies the kind of outdated, exclusionary thinking that gives gamers a bad name. The otherwise excellent Portland Retro Gaming Expo—not to mention Portland's gamers—deserve better. ERIK HENRIKSEN
Oct 21-23, Oregon Convention Center, Fri 3pm, Sat-Sun 10am, $10-35, all ages
Death From Above 1979, Black Rebel Motorcycle club, Deap Vally
This is a great chance to see two badass bands on the same bill, as they co-headline a national tour. I still believe that Black Rebel Motorcycle Club—from California and particularly popular in Europe—is one the best rock bands of the past 20 years, and their 2005 record Howl is one of my favorite albums of all time. Now I’m pumped BRMC is teaming up with Toronto-based DFA 1979, and I’ll be seeing them both live for the first time. It will be a great show, and if you like rock music you should go. DOUG BROWN
Roseland, 9pm, $28, all ages
Great Northwest Beer and Wine Fest
A two-day celebration of not just the Northwest's bountiful fall season, but the beers and wines that come with them, paired with local food, live entertainment, and a whole lot of vendors and exhibitors.
Portland Expo Center, 4pm, $10
Fall Used Book Sale
Oregon's largest used-book sale features over 100,000 items at vastly reduced prices, including hardcovers, trade paperbacks, CDs, DVDs, audiobooks, LPs, and more. Proceeds benefit the Multnomah County Library, the second most-used library system in the country.
Doubletree Hotel (Lloyd Center), 6pm, all ages
The always-hilarious Natasha Leggero is a slam dunk for comedy lovers. Armed with arm-length gloves and a faux sophisticated style, Natasha brilliantly skewers the narcissism of the upper class, and her crowd work is first rate. Miss her at your own peril! WM. STEVEN HUMPHREY
Helium Comedy Club, 7:30pm, 10pm, $15-20
Anthrax, Death Angel
In 1991 my extremely patient dad took my best friend and me to an unbelievably curated show called Clash of the Titans. This event featured Slayer, Megadeth, and, most importantly, Anthrax, who visually separated themselves from the other apocalyptic acts by performing on a safety yellow and red op-art stage with the gigantic head of Not Man, their Alfred E. Neumanesque mascot, as its centerpiece. Anthrax didn’t possess the typical death-and-skulls presentation, and instead proudly flaunted the cartoonish garb of East Coast skate-punk culture. This spoke to us in a way that other “serious” metal bands didn’t, while hip-hop forays like “I’m the Man” only solidified our love for guitarist Scott Ian. Since then I’ve always maintained to defiant purists that this influentially playful take on New York nihilism earned Anthrax their thrash-metal elder statesmen badges, if not a permanent place in the genre’s hall of fame. CHRIS SUTTON
Hawthorne Theatre, 8pm, $27.50-30, all ages
Of Montreal, Teen
The first time I saw Of Montreal live kind of felt like puberty—I was 15, sweaty, nervous, and surrounded by a support system of glittery friends and strangers. At that age, the walls of my childhood bedroom were plastered with the Southern experimental pop group’s posters, but even as a veteran listener, I felt out of place as I stood waiting for Kevin Barnes to explode onstage like a pink, swirling bath bomb. Though at first I felt far too square, young, and sober to access Of Montreal’s psychedelic, free love, my teen insecurities soon melted away and I became one of them—a self-assured disco sweetheart rising from the crowd in a cloud of sparkles as “Wraith Pinned to the Mist” blared before me. I watched as Barnes strutted across the stage and tossed his scarf with nonchalance, surrounded by dancers dressed as farm animals with human genitalia. Right then I realized just how holistic an artistic lifestyle the band’s members lead, and that there was no way this would be the last time I’d witness them living it. Of Montreal works in the business of identity definition, and their über-glam indie rock is deeply entrenched in overt sexuality and gender play. Pleasure as protest isn’t new, but their ever-growing catalog continues to present dance fare with purpose and freshness. MORGAN TROPER
Wonder Ballroom, 9pm, $16-18, all ages
Ingrid Michaelson, AJR
The multiplatinum, award-winning singer-songwriter headlines 105.1 The Buzz's 4th annual Party for Pink, supporting Breast Friends.
Crystal Ballroom, 8pm, $39.50-104.50, all ages
Emma Donoghue is the Dublin-born and Canada-based writer behind the critically acclaimed novel Room. Tonight Donoghue reads from her latest book, The Wonder, which tells the story of an English nurse brought to a small Irish village to observe what appears to be a miracle, a girl rumored to have survived without food for months.
Powell's Books at Cedar Hills Crossing, 7:30pm
Mt Hood Skibowl, Timberline, Mt Hood Meadows, and Mt Bachelor are coming together (having a summit, if you will, eh? EH??) to throw this weekend-long celebration of all the things that make winter fun, including a film festival dedicated to skiing and snowboarding films, a beer festival dedicated to some of the Northwest's finest brewers of winter ales, and vendors selling some of the best winter apparel and sporting gear. With musical performances from the Dandy Warhols, the Federal Empire, Michelle DeCourcy & the Rocktarts, and Robert Wynia.
Rose Quarter Memorial Coliseum, 3pm, $5-8
Disenchanter, Crimson Altar, The Sun Giants, Swamp
It takes a lot to stand out in this world, and Disenchanter does just that. The Portland trio echo the '70s without sounding like a retro rip-off, and are devastatingly heavy without getting bogged down like so many doom bands. Plus, frontwoman Sabine Stangenberg is a powerful vocal force that few of Disenchanter's contemporaries can match. Put simply, Disenchanter rips. BEN SALMON
(The World Famous) Kenton Club, 9pm, free
New Move, Iska Dhaaf, Mordecai
New Move doesn't do anything by the book, and that includes not just their sound, but their showmanship. Pop music typically doesn't do what New Move makes it do. Catch them tonight when they premier their brand new video at Bunk Bar.
Bunk Bar, 9:30pm, $5
Don't forget to check out our Things To Do calendar for even more things to do!