The last week brought with it an absolute onslaught of welcome and unwelcome local music world news, from the pleasant and mundane (Blues Fest and Pickathon announcing their 2023 lineups!) to the depressing (the death of Portland’s legendary drag icon Darcelle XV). Instead of searching for a way out, lean into the momentary gloom with a show featuring the spaghetti western-styled rock of Federale, a mournful single (and impending album) from Portugal. The Man, and the poignant neo-soul of Phony Ppl.


Can’t miss upcoming events. 


If you’re into the dark, doom-infused sound of Spaghetti Westerns or moody '60s and '70s Italian horror cinema scores, you should know about atmosphere-engendering Portland group Federale. Shepherded by bassist Collin Hegna (Brian Jonestown Massacre), the six-piece band writes tracks to stand in a doorway to—while everyone else in the bar freezes and looks your way. It is not yet known how Lollipop Shoppe expects to accommodate an audience of attendees all trying to stand in the venue's doorway to 2022 track “Blood Moon,” but hopefully during the likely live cover of Ray Livingston’s “Mona Lisa,” crowds can at least slow walk and sway under soft focus. (Lollipop Shoppe, 736 SE Grand, Fri April 14, 9 pm, tickets here, $11-13, 21+, w/ Silver Triplets of the Rio Hondo)


New release(s) from a Portland-relevant artist. 

“Dummy,” Portugal. The Man

At the top of the month, Alaska-to-Portland band Portugal. The Man dropped a new song, “Dummy,” delivering the first official single from their forthcoming full-length, CHRIS BLACK CHANGED MY LIFE, which is due out June 23 via Atlantic Records. (Although they also teased the stunning opening track, “Heavy Games II [feat. Jeff Bhasker],” along with a companion visual.) The album follows their acclaimed 2017 debut Woodstock, and was written in dedication to their late friend and honorary member Chris Black. Produced by Asa Taccone (of the group’s unavoidable radio hit “Feel It Still”), “Dummy” feels like an eerie, end-of-times dance party or the fog of grief after a loved one dies, and you wonder whether you might just keel over and die, too. “Everyone I know / is running from the afterlife / These days they make it sound sweet/ If this is the last dance you can count on me.” The single comes with a funny music video that’s clearly filmed in Alaska and features their new sidekick Tank Dog. This July, the band will play an epic homecoming show at Edgefield. Even better: San Diego soul trio Thee Sacred Souls are opening, so make sure to get out to Troutdale in a timely manner. (Edgefield, 2126 SW Halsey, July 21, 6:30 pm, $54.50, tickets here, all ages)


Some upcoming music buzz to put on your radar.

Phony Ppl

In the mood to hear some ultra smooth, highly liberated hip-hop and soul? Brooklyn neo-soul group Phony Ppl's upcoming show at Star Theater is giving folks a very compelling reason to trek out their doors on a weeknight. Touring in support of the 2022 Euphonyus (the group's first full-length since the 2018 hit mō’zā-ik), the five-piece is likely to jam-out album highlights like “love just died.,” the bluesy “been away.,” the experimental pulsing of “don’t knock & common courtesy.,” and the Earth Wind and Fire-reminiscent “to get home.” Here’s hoping they make a little time for “Fkn Around,” even though Megan Thee Stallion won’t be joining. (Star Theater, 13 NW 6th, Wed May 3, 8:30 pm, tickets here, $22-47, w/ Johnny 2 Phones)