THURSDAY, November 7

SAD GUY--Poor, poor Damien Jurado. His heart is broken and there's nothing he can do except spew it out of his chest and onto his guitar strings. His songs are typically simple, slowed down, sad little ditties. In his new album, I Break Chairs, he throws some distortion into the mix, but it still ain't cheery. Beautiful and worth listening to? Yes. Cheery? No. JWS w/Songs: Ohia, John Vechiarelli; Berbati's Pan, 231 SW Ankeny, 248-4579, 9:30 pm, $8

SCRATCH--In these, our modern times, there are all kinds of unconventional arts. Some of our peers inspire us with cat painting, some with cut-and-paste erotic zines entitled Bored & Gay, others with impromptu R&B scream-singing in Pioneer Square, and of course, one of the more popular fringe arts; turntable scratching. Kid Koala is one of the best, creating funky scratchisms that will tantalize those who specialize in 'doing the Robot,' plus normal people, too. KS w/Faust & Shortee, DJ Wicked; B Complex, 320 SE 2 nd, 224-TIXX, 9 pm, $10

FRIDAY, November 8

MMMNNN CREAMY--Scene Creamers are a relatively new outfit made up by Ian Svenonius of Nation of Ulysses and the Make-Up, doing typically wacky Adam Sandler vocalizing, and playing along with Make-Up bassist Michelle Mae. Their style is a lot like the Make-Up--bass driven, funky, and as soulful as white folk can get--but the guitar is more crazy and experimental. It doesn't really matter to me, I'll be there based on the name alone. KS w/Waxwings, Lion Fever; Blackbird, 3728 NE Sandy, 282-9949, 9 pm

FUNNY--Well, well, well, if it ain't Portland's funniest comic duo, Loren Hoskins and John Breen, back for another round of side-splitting sketch comedy: Apocalypse Mambo. What makes these guys so good is not that they're funny (though being funny certainly helps), but that they have such a keen idea for the nuance of character. They have many, many characters to trot out--a seemingly endless fountain--and each one has its own distinct and perfectly executed set of fascinating quirks. JWS Coho Theatre, 2257 NW Raleigh, 242-0202, Fri-Sat, 10:30 pm

SATURDAY, November 9

DIVA--Five years since her solo debut, the roughhewn Neko Case has only picked up speed and determination. Like a tornado tearing across a scorched landscape of heartbreak and sorrow, the one-time punker continues to pick up debris from every musical genre--punk, country-western, R&B--and integrate them into her moody and captivating voice. PB Aladdin Theater, 3017 SE Milwaukie, 233-1994, 8 pm, $14

SHORTY-SHORTS--For those with short attention spans and little patience for over-long Hollywood products starring that jackass Eddie Murphy, don't miss the weeklong 29th Annual NW Film and Video Festival. Tonight's short films spotlight such concerns as the implosion of the Kingdome (SOS), the horrors of working in the service industry (Day Job), and zombie band geeks (Three Nocturnes for Trombone). WSH Guild Theatre, SW 9th & Taylor, 221-1156, 7 pm, $6.50

SUNDAY, November 10

ART--Jocking a crummy job so your slumlord's babies can go to parochial pre-school, meanwhile sapping your own vitality? Find out how to become a self-sustained artist--yes, even in this economic anus of a town--at "Hand to Mouth: Sustainability for Portland Media Makers." Or hey, you could always just wait around to be discovered. MS Portland Art Museum, North Wing, Studio C, 1219 SW Park, 226-2811, 2 pm, free

MONDAY, November 11

MUSIC-- Like bands that make you hold your ears and scream, "Ow, Ow, OWWWW!"? Like, in a painful way? Then Black Dice is your cup of battery acid. In the vein of Melt Banana, the Dice take a few notes and add a buttload of distortion and power metal to turn your ears and senses into a big rubbery pile of gelatinous material. C'mon! You know you love it! WSH W/ Yellow Swans, Nice Nice, Sleetmute/Nitemute; Blackbird, 3728 NE Sandy, 282-9949, 9pm

WEDNESDAY, November 13

SUPERSTAR--We haven't seen a performer with the panache of Prince for a while (okay, you got me, excluding Usher), but I'd be willing to say that Har Mar Superstar is the Prince of the zeros. His R&B singing style reminds me of early Michael (you know, JACKSON) and backed by electro beats--he's more now than now. KS w/The Pattern, The Thermals; Berbati's, 231 SW Ankeny, 224-TIXX, 9 pm, $7

WEIRDOS--The Sun City Girls are an old-skool band from Arizona. They play, um, music. Okay, that's a start. You could mention things like "cow punk" or "avant-jazz" or "noise." But the truth is that they have a feral originality that's been dodging pigeonholes since before you were layering day-glow socks. P.S. They're boys. MS W/Miss Murgatroid, Listening Station; Dante's, 1 SW 3rd, 226-6630, 9 pm, $10

READING--It would be way too easy to be overcome with jealousy for Zadie Smith's life. Two years ago, at 24 years old, her debut novel, White Teeth, held London in a trace. Witty, razor-sharp smarts, jaw dropping beautiful. But she is also far too charming and sassy for such petty emotions. PB Schnitzer Concert Hall, 1111 SW Broadway, 7:30 pm, $26.50