BEN FOLDS Playing with the Oregon Symphony this week. La de dah!


Interpol w/Rey Pila; Crystal Ballroom, 1332 W Burnside
It could be argued that Interpol's Turn on the Bright Lights is one of the most significant rock records of the early '00s—it served as something of a gateway to post-punk for music nerds my age, for better or worse. The group's new record, El Pintor, suggests the band just figured out what an anagram is.


Burnt Palms, Golden Hour w/Sister Palace, Certain Smile; Laughing Horse Books, 12 NE 10th
Burnt Palms are a hazy, fuzzy garage-pop outfit from California whose new LP, The Girl You Knew, sounds sort of like Tiger Trap on muscle relaxants (that's a compliment). Also performing are Portland's own Golden Hour, whose wistful, occasionally angular four-song debut, released back in February, is one of the best local EPs so far this year.


Ben Folds with the Oregon Symphony; Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall, 1037 SW Broadway
In spite of his posturing as the "angry young man" for the slacker generation, Ben Folds has always seemed more comfortable playing the role of bona fide piano man. With all due respect to Darren Jessee and Robert Sledge—the drummer and bassist, respectively, for the recently re-formed Ben Folds Five and maybe one of the most unfuckwithable rhythm sections in indie-rock history—the most enduring cuts off the Five's first three records are the comparatively syrupy ones that spotlight Folds and his ivories, such as "Boxing," "Narcolepsy," and yes, even "Brick." It's not really surprising, then, how organic this material sounds adapted for an orchestra, something Folds has been doing on solo tours sporadically since 2005, when he engaged on a two-night stint with the West Australian Symphony Orchestra at the Kings Park and Botanic Garden in Perth. On this current tour, Folds—in addition to performing rearranged classics from what has grown into a pretty expansive oeuvre—will debut an entirely instrumental piano concerto. I guess everyone has to grow up sooner or later.