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Up & Coming

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THURSDAY 4/8

PREEMPTIVE PAN-ZEN STRIKE: ACROYEAR, GREENSTAR, RUDEMENT, LEGERDEMAIN, TRY MY CABBAGE
(Tonic, 3100 NE Sandy) Rudement, otherwise known as bassist/percussionist George Johnson, imagines a semantic overhaul of electronic music's vocabulary. In his mind, drum 'n' bass becomes bass and drums, and ambient becomes "illbient." Of course, as an accomplished composer who remixes his own dense, rhythmic compositions at each performance, Johnson has earned the right to define his own terms. This showcase for the Pan-Zen collective also offers other equally eclectic artists, including the wildly diverse dance act Try My Cabbage and the bludgeoning bass-and-breaks outfit Acroyear. ANDREW MILLER



FEST FEST: WET CONFETTI, PSEUDOSIX, CHEVRON, THE LAST REGIMENT, MINES, MODERNSTATE, SEX WITH GIRLS IS RAD, DJ TAN'T
(Berbati's, 231 SW Ankeny) Seattle's Mines need to shine up the shrapnel from their quirky songwriting explosions, but they're still a lovely little joy to watch. Mines dodge themselves onstage as they hop from bright pop guitar to dirty, ballsy percussion; the instrument-switching quartet can handle each othersâ duties with competence and confidence. We're talkin' Arches and Aisles-era Spinanes-y, but minus a lady and plus some Barsuk Records crooner sway. JOAN HILLER See Music pg 17



FRIDAY 4/9

STANDARD ISSUE, RED SECTOR, PHARRAH PHOSPHATE, TWO SIDES OF ONE
(Mt. Tabor, 4811 SE Hawthorne) Like the Cure at its most accessible, Pharrah Phosphate proves that gloomy tones and catchy melodies need not be mutually exclusive. In addition to other noteworthy crestfallen C-bands (Church, early Cult), this Portland quartet recalls '60s stoner sounds; its tunes bleed black through a smoky psychedelic haze. Pharrah Phosphate should prove especially enthralling for anyone whose alphabetically organized CD collection moves from Badfinger to Bauhaus to Beatles. AM



THE SOUNDS, VUE
(Roseland Grill, NW 6th & Burnside) It's said about a lot of bands, but in this case, it's true: The Sounds kick ass. Singer Maja Ivarsson owns the stage. And though many think she sounds like Debbie Harry, I think she sounds more like Kim Wilde, or Tich Anderson of Scottish new wave band Altered Images. Whatever comparison is a compliment in its own way, especially since Ivarsson's from Sweden and only 23 years old, and the boys who back her up, though hot themselves, take the backseat musically while she rides, feet on the dash, shotgun. KATHLEEN WILSON



FEST FEST: BLACKBIRD RED, JONNY X & THE GROADIES, ANDREW KAFFER, DEAD SCIENCE, NICE NICE, XIU XIU, TOTIMOSHI, POINT LINE PLANE
(Nocturnal, 1800 W Burnside) I love Jonny X because their songs are short and manic and adrenaline fueled, and they suit my short attention span perfectly. Plus, I like it when they use their strobe light. Xiu Xiu's wall of noise can either annoy the crap out of me, or dazzle me completely, depending on whether I took methadone that day. Totomoshi is coming with new album, so check their fresh metal songs and new vocal rumbing. KATIE SHIMER



BREAKER! BREAKER!, BAD DUDES, FORMLESS, HUSTLER WHITE
(Disjecta, 116 NE Russell) See MWBW pg 15



QUEEN BEE JACKSON, THE FORTH, KIESKAGATO, CAPSULE
(Ash Street, 225 SW Ash) Queen Bee Jackson is the brainchild of Hilary Spray, a smoky singer-songwriter who pulls her band into the depths of eight-minute, Pink Floydian rock-outs. It may be a bit too intense for the Ash Street (laser show at OMSI, totally; drunken dive bar, not so much), but go easy on the booze and you'll be okay. You'll want to sway to and fro, see, and it could be hard to keep your balance. JUSTIN WESCOAT SANDERS



NICOLA CONTE, DJS ZAC LOVE & ELLIOTT
(Holocene, 1001 SE Morrison) Continuing on the Eighteenth Street Lounge/Othertempo student exchange program, Italian troubadour/debonaire/le petit dejeuner Nicola Conte brings his plump and luscious mélange of romantic bossa nova, nu-jazz and sophisticated lounge. JULIANNE SHEPHERD



NORDIC, INVISIBLE, CHARMPARTICLES
(Ohm, 31 NW 1st) I'm adding Nordic's Transatlantic EP (which they'll celebrate the release of tonight) to my growing stack of discs to listen to while taking a nap. This isn't an insult; that same stack includes Mum and Sigur Ros, revered Icelandic ambient bands with whom Nordic shares a lot in common. Nordic's slightly more rockin', though, but then, as I said, I only want to listen them at naptime. I'll stick with the old standbys when it's time for some heavy-duty slumber. JWS



SUNSET VALLEY, THE MINDERS, durango park
(Dante's, 1 SW 3rd) Sunset Valley's Herman Jolly is a fantastic craftsman; songs off the band's last album (2001's Icepond) are prisms of dreamy psych. It's power pop that's out to get you for sure, but feedbacky textures wrap themselves around each track like thorny brambles so it's not too easy. Seems The Valley's been coming out of a long dormancy of late; they're playing a handful of shows around our great Pacific Northwest this month. JH



SATURDAY 4/10

MF DOOM, RA THE RUGGED MAN
(Berbati's, 231 SW Ankeny) It fucking happened. MF Doom collaborated with Madlib for the grimy Madvillainy--a powerhouse combo of two of hiphop's most original noms de many plumed, and possibly one of 2004's best hiphop releases thus far--and tonight, a bemasked MF Doom perches above, waiting with metal-fingered swoop. Like everything Doom does, this tour is shrouded in mystery and alternate realities--it was only announced like, a minute ago--and therefore it is unclear weather Madlib is a part of tonight's ceremonies, though he's on the roster for other cities on the West Coast up to and around tonight's performance. Either way, legends don't come lightly. And sometimes they are accompanied by big nasties--or peddlers of smut--like Rawkus RA the Rugged Man, who you may recognize from Mass Appeal or Ego Trip's Illest Minority Moments (nee TV Race Riot). JS



SUNBURN: THE PLANET THE, THE THERMALS, THE FALLOUTS, MOUNT SIMS, WINNER OF RUGBURN
(Lewis & Clark, 0615 SW Palatine Hill) See MWBW pg 15



SMEGMA, SOLID EYE, PARAMECIAL WEDDING, GOD, CEPHALOATOMOK
(Jasmine Tree, 401 SW Harrison) The godparents of experimental noise artists everywhere, Smegma is a NW original. Original as in weird. Their jammy, improvisational songs are clashing and reeling in a new jazzy kind of way, punctuated with dissonant chords and creepy electronic recordings. If this isn't your thing, you will know right away because your ears will start to weep. But Smegma is ground zero for those with an interest in challenging, innovative sounds. Solid Eye is equally funky, but in a more alien style. In fact, they sound like they should be the house band in a red-carpeted lounge on Mars, which is pretty tubular. MARJORIE SKINNER



THE SOUL OF JOHN BLACK, THE WARFIELD PROJECT
(Dante's, 1 SW 3rd) Fronted by former Fishbone member John Bigham, the Soul of John Black plays a brand of funk that has about it the urgency of a last-ditch attempt. It's as if the band were trying by every means/instrument available to reverse all of the damage that contemporary R&B has done to the very substance of black music--soul. Instead of surfaces, the Soul of John Black strives for depth--deep vocals and lyrics that communicate deep emotions and thoughts. If one is into brothers doing something that is sensitive and thoughtful, then the Soul of John Black is for you; but if you want to hear brothers being niggaz for life, then this show is definitely not the place to be. CHARLES MUDEDE



MIKEY DREAD, NUFFSED
(Barracuda, 9 NW 2nd) Mikey Campbell, AKA Mikey Dread, operated, between 1977 and 1979, the first major reggae show in Jamaica. It was called Dread at the Controls, and ran from midnight to 6:00 a.m. every night except Monday. Hiphop radio shows in New York City in the early '80s, like WBLS (with Mr. Magic on the controls) and KISS FM (with Red Alert on the controls), had their roots in Mikey Dread's radio program; in fact, every important aspect of hiphop has its roots in Jamaican music--from rap (toasting), to deejaying (sound systems), to remixing (dubbing). Mikey Dread was and still is a master in all of these forms of reggae, and if you can get your hands on the album Dread at the Controls--which is based on the radio show and is very hard to find--you will have the pleasure of owning some of the best dubs and toasting in the history of Jamaican pop. CM



FEST FEST: MARYSVILLE MARIMBA BAND, BLACK PEPPERCORNS, GOKEN, TALKDEMONIC, THE GRAILS, AMBER ASYLUM, THE LIGHTS
(Nocturnal, 1800 W Burnside) See Music pg 17



TIGER ARMY, THE BUSINESS, ROGER MIRET & THE DISASTERS, F-MINUS, US ROUGHNECKS
(Roseland NW 6th & Burnside) Tiger Army are an East Bay band that took the psychobilly route in the East Bay punk rock choose-your-own-adventure game. Surprisingly, their music is actually pretty understated. The rockabilly style is simplified, while the rager punk element is prettified by passionate vocal delivery (that actually turns out sounding like a hair metal ballad more than anything--and by the way that's a plus) and loud but controlled blasts of guitar. The Business are classic British drunk punk, and responsible for a recurring nightmare I have had ever since my arrest. It goes: "Knock it back and have another one/Drinkin' and driving is so much fun." Over and over. MS



SUNDAY 4/11

KITES, HAIR POLICE, PRURIENT, D YELLOW SWANS, SMEGMA
(Meow Meow, 320 SE 2nd) See Music pg 17



MEATJACK, YOB, AUTHORITY FIGHTS MAJORITY
(Berbati's, 231 SW Ankeny) Few decent metal bands are as aggressive with their email list as they are on stage. Enter Meatjack, a decade-old Baltimore trio that marries the dynamics of Badmotorfinger-era Soundgarden with the quality industrial metal crunch of Ministry, Neurosis, or Die Kruezen. Sometimes thrashing out, often plodding into doom territory, Meatjack never leave the listener bereft of melody or hooks. This is a chance to see a professional underground unit that had completely realized itself before even setting foot in Portland. Still, locals may recognize the name Meatjack from a flattering appearance on Jon Waters' Cecil B. Demented soundtrack (alongside The Locust, Moby, and Liberace!). YOB's inclusion makes this a real Easter Sunday treat--just prepare to sign Meatjack's email list at your inbox's peril. NATHAN CARSON



MONDAY 4/12

METRIC, MELLOWDRONE
(Berbati's, 231 SW Ankeny) One of the hardest-working vocalists in indiepop, Emily Haines also lends her crystalline pipes to Stars and Broken Social Scene. Racing past those groups' luxuriously sprawled compositions, Metric's tunes throb fast and loud with vital new-wave energy. Its upbeat tunes pack major hooks despite their simple structures, and Metric's material, already enchanting on disc, benefits from the conversion to a concert setting. AM



SUICIDE MACHINES, AGAINST ALL AUTHORITY, THE CODE
(Mt. Tabor-Sabala's, 4811 SE Hawthorne) The Suicide Machines have discovered an ingenious way to branch into pure pop and alt-rock without alienating the fanbase that adores its early hardcore/ska efforts. The Detroit-based outfit funnels its artistic experimentation into its recent albums, hit-and-miss efforts that play like various-artists compilations, and goes back to basics during its blistering live sets, which consist almost entirely of material from its hard-skanking debut Destruction by Definition and its follow-up thrashathon Battle Hymns. Against All Authority has also evolved, moving from a band whose perky, horn-fueled tunes belied its strident political lyrics to a group whose gruff vocals and growling guitars reinforce its righteous rage. AM



TUESDAY 4/13

J-LIVE, PEOPLE UNDER THE STAIRS, THORN CITY IMPROV, LIGHT HEADED, DJ MARQUEZ
(Ash Street, 225 SW Ash) See MWBW pg 15



OK GO, WHEAT, LAGUARDIA
(Berbati's, 231 SW Ankeny) In high school it was easy, and in life it's sort of the same. If you get sick of one identity, you can always charge the future away to mommy's credit card. Flip the script on your own little world. Just change clothes, and go. Five years ago, when Wheat released Hope And Adams, they seemed like another harmless group of indiepop songwriters, all cardigan sweaters and corduroy pants. But this, apparently, wasn't all it's cracked up to be; the band's recently-released major-label debut, Per Second, Per Second, Per SecondÉ Every Second, is clearly a polished attempt at radio airplay. It's the equivalent of hanging an overpriced shirt in a closet full of tattered threads, and as the Massachusetts based three-piece goes in for seconds years after Jimmy ate the World, it seems like a shame they couldn't have just turned back the clocks, instead. And this week they're opening for Ok Go. Yeah, totally. TREVOR KELLEY



DAVID BOWIE, POLYPHONIC SPREE
(Rose Garden, 1401 N Wheeler) Usually by the time an artist's repertoire is on all the nostalgic rock stations, you're better off just listening to the records at home instead of shelling out bank for a live-in-concert disappointment. Not so with David Bowie, who remains ever the showman. Having aged past his excessive costumes and cocaine dream personas, he's pared down his shows to a simple and sincere mix of the classics with his newer material. The best thing about him is that he just seems so happy to be there, dancing around and singing for you. It's a show of love that audiences don't often get from an endless parade of self absorbed, morbid, pissy, or sarcastic rock stars. I'm sure he's a total a-hole in person, but onstage the man is pure class. MS



THE OFFSPRING, THE (INTERNATIONAL) NOISE CONSPIRACY, THE START
(Roseland, NW 6th & Burnside) The (International) Noise Conspiracy, a Swedish band swathed in farfisa organ, shag cuts, and Marxist rhetoric, stood at the cusp of the garage trend back in 2000. But their influences are much more current than the usual Nuggets names. In fact, their story mimics their main influence, the amazing early '90s Fugazi-Stax hybrid from D.C., Nation of Ulysses. The founding members of the (International) Noise Conspiracy cut their teeth in the mid-'90s with the spastic Refused, who were a near copy of Ulysses except, being Swedish, their socialist sloganeering didn't require irony. Then, after Ulysses morphed into ass-centric the Make-Up, Refused became the dancier INC. Despite their well-made mod punk, they nonetheless came off as a fan-club version of the Make-Up. The roads are finally diverging. The Make-Up has morphed again into the weed-centric Weird War while INC have remained focused, though their adherence to the matching outfit/nice haircut image is looking more like marketing than Marxism. All of this is probably a moot point to their fans who were memorizing multiplication tables when Nation of Ulysses were touring, and to whom marketing long ago trumped ideology. ERIC DAVIDSON



WEDNESDAY 4/14

THE BUSH BASH VARIETY SHOW
(Conan's, 39th & SE Hawthorne) This is one way to get the Left to unite: Cram in as many different types of entertainment possible to attract the special interests of as many factions as possible. That is what Every American Votes has done in organizing this festival to raise money against the Bush Administration. Amusements include sketch comedy, spoken word, indie movies about Bush, an Enron cartoon, and an eclectic assemblage of musicians, including John Whipple's countrified blues, hiphop from MyG, Bitchface, Eagle Ridin Papas, Philip Golden, Teeming Masses, and DJ Monte Carlo. The goal is that every song, skit, poem, and clip will have the theme of "telling George Bush to go back to Crawford, Texas." MS



WALLS OF JERICHO, MARTYR A.D., BURY YOUR DEAD, 36 CRAZYFISTS
(Solid State, SE 9th & Ash) Walls of Jericho combines tight Slayer-influnced metal riffs and tormented screaming vocals to create hardcore you can't help but love. If you love hardcore that is; because this is going to be a long night if not. Plus, they're fronted by a woman, which is something of a rarity. KS



THE VINES, JET, THE LIVING END, NEON
(Roseland, NW 6th & Burnside) He will trash the drum set and roll his eyes; he will hit the bong and rip off Nevermind. But to expect anything but a spotty live show from the Craig Nicholls-designed train wreck better known to this world as The Vines, would be to confuse them with another band entirely. This used to be a remarkably easy thing to do, say, two years ago when they washed up on to these shores in the midst of the whole garage-rock revolution. But with the release of their second album, Winning Days, they've gotten so comfortable acting like someone else that it's sort of become their own thing. It's still not a good thing, mind you, just a slightly more interesting one. The Living End, after three underrated albums of drinking-with-me-mates blue-collar punk, are actually the most respectable band on this whole "Australian Invasion" bill if only because they're also playing with Jet. Whose idea was this, anyway? TREVOR KELLEY

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