courtesy of the artist

SUPER PICK

k.d. lang
(Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall, 1037 SW Broadway) For those uninitiated into the cult of k.d. lang, you might be wondering how a one-hit wonder from the early ’90s manages to sell out a 2,700-seat concert hall well over a month before show time. The two-fold answer lies in this brilliant performer’s unwavering moxie and the supernatural voice she commands with bewildering, effortless, and heart-wrenching precision. First, the moxie: Despite an early career marked by growing critical acclaim and prestigious country music awards, lang ultimately acknowledged the industry had little regard for a gender-bending vegetarian with cropped hair, and promptly quit the repressive scene. Shortly after her departure from Nashville in 1992, when being gay in the pre-internet public sphere was almost exclusively attached to dying of AIDS and living in sin, lang unapologetically proclaimed she dug other women and instantly became an icon for queers around the globe. This courageous revelation essentially coincided with the release of her album Ingénue—10 sultry tracks steeped in the unique timbres of lap steel guitar, accordion, vibraphone, and pizzicato strings, seductively fleshed out with gauzy lyrics of unrequited love and spiritual longing. Experienced a quarter-century later, the record (which lang once described as “post-nuclear cabaret”) retains its full power and will forever be intertwined with her trailblazing disclosure. And that voice? Reminiscent of Wayne Newton, Dinah Washington, and Elvis, the vocal prowess that the gods have bestowed upon this particular human has inspired an expansive range of praise from hordes of music writers over the years. Adjectives have their limits, however, and k.d. lang effectively shatters their power, as will undoubtedly be the case once again during tonight’s concert celebrating the 25th anniversary of Ingénue. In a word, her voice is everything. BRIAN HORAY


WEDNESDAY 2/21

ROSTAM, JOY AGAIN
(Doug Fir, 830 E Burnside) Though he’s best known for producing hits for stars like Carly Rae Jepsen and Solange and playing with Vampire Weekend (which he left in 2016), Rostam Batmanglij has been quietly releasing his own electronic pop songs for the past six years. By the time fans got their hands on his hotly anticipated solo debut, Half-Light, the powerhouse multi-instrumentalist had already released most of the songs on the record. (But it’s good, so who cares?) Half-Light continues the work fans have come to associate with Rostam—namely, his imaginings of baroque-pop song sequels to the Mark Mothersbaugh instrumentals from The Royal Tenenbaums soundtrack. It’s great, if shiveringly sentimental in some places, and feels like what everyone needs to have on their playlist right now: a sweet-tempered view on being busy and in love by a man who always smiles when he sings. SUZETTE SMITH

DOUG TUTTLE, SAM KOGON, THE VERNER PANTONS, FRENZ
(The Know, 3738 NE Sandy) People of Portland, I beseech you: Do not miss Doug Tuttle tonight at The Know. For years, the New England longhair has been a bright light in the psychedelic underground, first as co-founder of the New Hampshire band Mmoss and more recently as a Boston-based solo artist. His three most recent albums—2014’s self-titled, 2016’s It Calls on Me, and 2017’s Peace Potato—are all rock-solid collections of pitch-perfect psych-pop that’s fuzzy, jangling, endlessly melodic, and just a little bit weird. You know how some psych bands have no tunes? And some pop bands try too hard to introduce psych elements into their sound? Tuttle strikes a perfect balance, over and over again. This is his first tour of the West Coast, and who knows when (or if) he’ll ever be back. I mean it when I say don’t miss him. BEN SALMON


THURSDAY 2/22

REAL ESTATE, BEDOUINE
(Revolution Hall, 1300 SE Stark) Read our story on Bedouine.

MIGUEL, SIR, NONCHALANT SAVANT
(Roseland, 8 NW 6th) Ever since releasing his self-produced first single, “Adorn” in 2012, neo-soul singer Miguel Pimentel has continued to impress (and arouse) audiences with his musical output—from that Mariah Carey collab “#Beautiful” to the 2015 song “Simplethings.” Two record labels and four excellent studio albums later, Miguel’s touring in support of his new project, War & Leisure. Personally, I’m dying to hear singles “Told You So,” “Sky Walker” and “Pineapple Skies,” (the music videos for which make an irrefutable case for seeing the tour). With singer-songwriter SiR on the lineup as well, this show is guaranteed to be legendary. JENNI MOORE

NO AGE, FLESH WORLD, BRIN
(Mississippi Studios, 3939 N Mississippi) If you’re like me and you kinda forgot that No Age exists, here’s great news: No Age still exists, they still rule, they have a new album out on Drag City called Snares Like a Haircut, and it totally rules, too. But seriously, this LA skate/art/noise-pop/punk duo has, for a decade now, been one of our very best bands—it’s just that they’ve been pretty quiet since releasing their fourth album, An Object, in 2013. But Snares Like a Haircut provides all of the wonderful things we’ve come to expect from Dean Spunt and Randy Randall: buzzed-out punk rock, shimmering drones, fractured pop vibes, sunshine feedback, and serrated ambience. No Age is that uneasy euphoria you feel when you’re hopped up on happy gas while a dead-eyed dentist drills deep into your sonic tooth. Thank the candy-colored heavens for No Age, and for No Age’s return. BS


FRIDAY 2/23

BURGER-A-GO-GO: THE COATHANGERS, DEATH VALLEY GIRLS, THE FLYTRAPS, FEELS
(Dante’s, 350 W Burnside) For more than a decade, Southern California’s Burger Records has been releasing cassette tapes for greasy, grungy, bubblegummy bands the world over. Burger-A-Go-Go is the label’s annual concert featuring lineups with exclusively female-fronted groups (in the past, that’s included Best Coast, the Julie Ruin, and Kate Nash). For the first time ever, they’re taking the show on the road, and this weekend the festival-on-wheels stops in Portland for two nights at Dante’s. With nary a dude band in sight, Burger-A-Go-Go is a rare unicorn of a festival that moves girls to the front. CD

AMENTA ABIOTO
FRI 2/23 CRYSTAL BALLROOM TOJO ANDRIANARIVO

TYPHOON, WILD ONES, AMENTA ABIOTO
(Crystal Ballroom, 1332 W Burnside) See All-Ages Action!

WHITNEY ROSE, CHUCK WESTMORELAND
(Bunk Bar, 1028 SE Water) To get a sense of what kind of artist you’re dealing with when it comes to Whitney Rose, just take a look at the cover of her most recent album, Rule 62. Against a purple backdrop, the Canadian singer/songwriter sits in a wooden chair, wearing white-fringed pants and a white tank top, her legs akimbo in manspread fashion. She stares straight at the camera, a look of pure defiance on her face. Once that chill running down your spine subsides, dive into the music found pressed into each copy. Recorded with the assistance of the Mavericks leader Raul Malo, the album is a swaggering, lucid collection of blues-flecked country that hits all the main stops on the thoroughfare: breakup ballads, stomping anthems of independence, and love songs that will have your toes curling with joy. ROBERT HAM

WHY?, FLORIST
(Revolution Hall, 1300 SE Stark) Born out of the northern Appalachian region of New York known as the Catskill Mountains is the sleepy lo-fi folk of Florist. The recording project of Emily Sprague is fresh off the sophomore release of If Blue Could Be Happiness, a collection of many delicately crafted parts that only when woven together are full and unbreakable. Sprague uses gentle finger-picked guitar chords, sparse snare and cymbal drumming, and piano and synth melodies that draw up a groggy half-dream world. Whereas their 2016 debut The Birds Outside Sang told a linear story of the isolation and recovery Sprague went through after being hit-and-run while riding their bike, If Blue Could Be Happiness is a rumination on the sort of subtle childhood memories that sneak up and suddenly flash back on a slow day spent alone. It’s melancholy—the fears of growing up, death, and depression feel at a distance, as Sprague’s cool voice takes center, and ponders things they forgot. Despite the uncertainty, this is music to truly get lost in: Sprague’s worlds are full of idyllic imagery, rolling hills, and stark vistas—a world so vast it’s impossible to fully take in. CAMERON CROWELL


SATURDAY 2/24

BURGER-A-GO-GO: DENGUE FEVER, WINTER, SUMMER TWINS, PATSY’S RATS
(Dante’s, 350 W Burnside) See Friday's preview, and read our story on Patsy’s Rats.

SIBELIUS’ FIFTH SYMPHONY: OREGON SYMPHONY, FRANCESCO PIEMONTESI
(Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall, 1037 SW Broadway) This evening, 35-year-old Francesco Piemontesi pulls double duty as guest keyboardist in the Symphonic Variations for Piano and Orchestra by César Franck, as well as for the challenging Burleske by Richard Strauss. It’s difficult to exceed the thrill of a rare soloist twofer on a single program, but Portland’s biggest band manages the feat by capping tonight’s show with absolute orchestral transcendence: the Fifth Symphony of Jean Sibelius. After witnessing 16 swans in the Finnish countryside, the composer wrote, “God, what beauty! They circled over me for a long time. Disappeared into the solar haze like a silver ribbon.” Lucky for us, Sibelius was equally gifted at writing musical notes, and went on to create a symphonic masterpiece that captures the ineffable sublimity of flight interjected with the surprising humor of honking swans. His Fifth’s final, staggered chords, each separated by silence, still manage to blow minds a century later. BRIAN HORAY

ILL CAMILLE, FRITZWA
(Tonic Lounge, 3100 NE Sandy) Though you might not yet be familiar with Ill Camille, you might recognize her voice as the icy-cool river running through the second half of Kendrick Lamar’s 12-minute opus “Sing About Me, I’m Dying of Thirst” (from his 2012 major label debut, Good Kid, M.A.A.D City). She dropped her own debut LP The Pre-Write in 2011, followed by Illustrated in 2012. But then the Los Angeles MC went silent for years; in an interview with Bandcamp, she explains that during that hiatus, she lost her father, her grandmother, and her uncle. In 2017 Ill Camille reemerged with the stunning, triumphant Heirloom. Throughout its 16 tracks, she raps about bottomless pain, systemic obstacles, her dreams, and her own warrior-like strength over gauzy backdrops that pay homage to her jazz, R&B, and old-school hip-hop influences. Ill Camille’s Portland tour stop is a can’t-miss, especially considering that Portland-by-way-of-NYC soul singer Fritzwa is the opening act. CD

DESPISE YOU, ESCORT, MACHO BOYS, ACRACY, DISPLACED
(The Know, 3728 NE Sandy) Thanks to the influence of speedfreak goofs like Spazz, Charles Bronson, and In/Humanity, the powerviolence heyday of the mid-’90s was always at least a little bit silly. Even Man Is the Bastard’s bass-heavy grand guignol was kind of funny. Despise You, meanwhile, was a brutal rebuke to anything resembling levity. The Inglewood band’s first life was bright and brief: a few splits with groups like Suppression and Stapled Shut and they were done. They never even played a show. The records, unbelievably intense documents of despair and loathing, were more than enough. Perhaps sensing that we all needed a proper soundtrack for our 21st century hellscape, Despise You reunited in 2007 and finally brought their bleak brand of super-fast hardcore to the stage. On their side of last year’s split with Coke Bust, the powerviolence pioneers sound as despondent and pissed as ever. Which is, in a weird way, comforting. CHRIS STAMM


SUNDAY 2/25

TUNE-YARDS, SUDAN ARCHIVES
(Wonder Ballroom, 128 NE Russell) See All-Ages Action!

SIBELIUS’ FIFTH SYMPHONY: OREGON SYMPHONY, FRANCESCO PIEMONTESI
(Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall, 1037 SW Broadway) See Saturday’s preview.

GRAILS, DANIEL HIGGS, ABRONIA
(Mississippi Studios, 3939 N Mississippi) With a moody catalog that has touched on post-rock, folk, metal, prog, electronics, and beyond, Portland-based instrumental band Grails have never stayed in one place. That’s true of the band members, too, who have scattered around the globe, but for tonight’s two shows (including a super-late Sunday night set—sorry, worker drones), founding members Emil Amos and Alex Hall have enlisted Zombi’s AE Paterra and local folk-psych mainstay Ilyas Ahmed to reinvent Grails once again. NED LANNAMANN

BULLY, MELKBELLY
(Aladdin Theater, 3017 SE Milwaukie) Don’t let the name fool you—Bully might be rough around the edges, but they play sticky-sweet grunge-punk with emotionally honest lyrics. After dropping their critically acclaimed debut Feels Like in 2015, last year the Nashville band released Losing via Sub Pop Records. It’s another hard-driving record of rough-and-tumble rock guided by Alicia Bognanno’s powerhouse vocals. Two albums in, it’s clear that Bully can masterfully combine punk fuzz and catchy pop hooks, and the result is infectiously energetic. DELANEY MOTTER


MONDAY 2/26

MARGO PRICE, BLANK RANGE
(Revolution Hall, 1300 SE Stark) See All-Ages Action!

SIBELIUS’ FIFTH SYMPHONY: OREGON SYMPHONY, FRANCESCO PIEMONTESI
(Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall, 1037 SW Broadway) See Saturday’s preview.

SHAMIR, PARDONER, MICHETE
(Star Theater, 13 NW 6th) Shamir is a 23-year-old singer-songwriter from Las Vegas, Nevada. His sound lives at an unmarked intersection of soul, lo-fi, disco, and electronic pop. Music videos for songs like “In for the Kill,” “On the Regular” and “Call It Off” are indicative of Shamir’s upbeat, care-free personality, but the Black and genderqueer artist is remarkable with nothing but an acoustic guitar, as evidenced by their beautifully raw performance on NPR’s Tiny Desk series. JM

SUPERCHUNK, BAT FANGS
(Mississippi Studios, 3939 N Mississippi) If you’ve been eagerly anticipating a follow-up to Ex Hex’s excellent radio rock throwback Rips, which is somehow almost four years old already, you must immediately get Bat Fangs into your life. Featuring Ex Hex bassist Betsy Wright on vocals and guitar, Bat Fangs comes off like Wright’s other band’s dirtbag cousin: The riffs are heavier, the sleaze is sleazier, and the knowing lifts from hard rock’s past are just a little bit sillier. It is sublime. Like some godforsaken Cerberus with the heads of Sammy Hagar, Joan Jett, and Billy Squier all vying for the spotlight, Bat Fangs stomp and shred through sweat-drenched anthems that very well could have time-traveled to 2018 from the addled noggin of a Camaro-hugging dropout daydreaming her way through 1983. Kudos to Superchunk for bravely taking Bat Fangs on the road with them—following this rock ’n’ roll leviathan every night is not going to be easy. CS


TUESDAY 2/27

K.D. LANG, SLAVA GRIGORYAN
(Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall, 1037 SW Broadway) Read our k.d. lang super pick.

KIKAGAKU MOYO
TUES 2/27 MISSISSIPPI STUDIOS POWER LINE AGENCY

KIKAGAKU MOYO, DON GERO
(Mississippi Studios, 3939 N Mississippi) The last time Kikagaku Moyo came through Portland was to play a sold-out show at Doug Fir that resulted in a microcosmic psych-jam freak-out. The Tokyo experimental rock crew undoubtedly left hundreds of new fans in their wake, as is evidenced by their inclusion in this year’s Pickathon lineup. The band’s explosive, meditative rock is propelled by sturdy noodling and thrilling polyrhythmic explorations, delivered in both muted and raucous volumes. That dynamism is manifold on each of the band’s releases thus far, but perhaps most jarringly on 2014’s brilliant Forest of Lost Children. Their 2016 LP House in the Tall Grass is a hypnotic, spacy, sitar-laden masterpiece that will consume your headspace for weeks if you allow it to, and you should. Portland modular synth project Don Gero opens the show with a set of moody, spastic noise cuts, a smattering of which comprised the contents of their 2017 LP Wizarding. RYAN J. PRADO

TINY MOVING PARTS, MOM JEANS, COVET, OSO OSO
(Analog Café, 720 SE Hawthorne) The Yunahon Mixtape, the latest album from Long Beach, New York band Oso Oso, heralds punk’s pivot towards ’00s revivalism, which makes sense—’90s kids are aging out, and now it’s our turn. Leaving behind some of the more explicit classic emo and pop-punk influences present on their 2015 debut, Real Stories of True People, Who Kind of Looked Like Monsters..., The Yunahon Mixtape is instead a bricolage of sounds mined from early-to-mid-’00s, soft-rocking touchstones like the Shins (pre-muzak), Rilo Kiley, and the Weakerthans. These callbacks might seem a little premature to anyone over, like, 33, but for younger adults who occupy that awkward generational blind spot between dial-up and smartphones, an album reminiscent of the Wedding Crashers soundtrack is resonant on a visceral level. Thankfully, The Yunahon Mixtape isn’t just satisfying conceptually—Oso Oso singer Jade Lilitri is one of pop-rock’s great contemporary songwriters, as evidenced by the indelible “The Slope” and “Reindeer Games,” which shamelessly cribs the intro to “Ride” by the Vines but is ultimately a much better song. MORGAN TROPER

TY DOLLA $IGN, 24HRS, TC DA LOC, DRE SINATRA
(Roseland, 8 NW 6th) Ty Dolla $ign’s big breakthrough came with “Paranoid,” the first single from his 2014 debut EP, Beach House. Since then, the Los Angeles rapper has been busy collaborating with big-name artists like Wiz Khalifa, Lil Wayne, Future, and Skrillex. He’s got yet another partnership in the works, this time a 21-track joint album with R&B crooner Jeremih called MihTy. Rumor has it the record’s dropping later this month, though the duo’s keeping details under wraps for now. Those lucky enough to score tickets to Ty’s sold-out “Don’t Judge Me” tour stop in Portland will probably get a sneak peek at what MihTy has to offer, but if not, there’s always the official after-party at Dante’s. CERVANTE POPE