Summer is nigh, let’s get high. Yes, let’s kiss that epic, super-sunny month of May goodbye by getting excited about things happening in June. Namely, Kingsley returns to her old stomping grounds to headline the Thesis, Dust Raps the Blues delivers an impressive third album, and later on, a stacked local bill at Polaris Hall.
Upcoming local show(s) featuring local artist(s).
The Thesis: Kingsley
Soulful pop singer Kingsley is set to headline the June edition of Portland’s popular monthly hip-hop series, the Thesis. She left Portland and moved to London last summer, so when she comes back for a visit she comes back to slay. Kingsley’s been clocking major time onstage, so we're excited to see her grace the small room inside biker bar Kelly’s Olympian with raspy vocals and extra-seasoned live show presence. If you’re looking for a teaser of what to expect, you’re in luck. In the last month, Kingsley released a slew of live performance videos, filmed at the Clinton Street Theater, featuring songs like “Life After You,” heartbroken and radio-ready single “All Me,” “Still Crying,” and a cover of Calvin Harris and the Disciples’ collab “How Deep Is Your Love”—not to be confused with the Bee Gees song. Also on the Thesis bill, rapper and singer Jai Baby, Horizon the Alien, and IAmJordan will all rock and warm up the stage. (Kelly’s Olympian, 426 SW Washington, Thurs June 1, 9 pm, $15 adv, $20 door, tickets here, 21+)
New release(s) from a Portland-relevant artist.
Problems, Dust Raps the Blues
Following up his 2022 Sometimes It’s Good to Feel Bad, Dust Raps the Blues dropped a new album Problems this past April. In nearly every way—except for his rapping verses—Problems is a blues-informed offering. Within the tracks you'll hear Dust touch on Satan, long drives, and gritty misery—all blues topic standards. A through-line vibe of self loathing mixed equally with drunken confidence feels appropriately engrossing. Beyond the genre homage, Problems also shows off Dust's impeccable ear for production. Highlights include a gorgeous guitar solo from Rick Klaras (of JRK) on “88 Corvette,” the delightfully chaotic “I Can’t Quit You Baby,” and “Circus Net,” which features Cali rapper Planet Asia and production by Eugene artist Calvin Valentine.
ADDED TO THE QUEUE:
Some upcoming music buzz to put on your radar.
Night Heron, Les Gold, Foamboy
Here’s another all-Portland bill that’s definitely worth putting on the calendar: Indie band Night Heron specialize in super smooth R&B and irresistibly chill vibes. Fans can expect their most recent project, 2021’s excellent Instructions for the Night, is likely the main on the menu for this show, which happens just a couple days after the start of summer! Support for the bill comes by way of melodic indie rock outfit Les Gold’s gloomy disco, and the pop musings of duo Foamboy—producer Wil Bakula and vocalist Katy Ohsiek. (Polaris Hall, 635 N Killingsworth Ct, Fri June 23, 8 pm, $15, tickets here, 21+)