Y LA BAMBA
(SW Main & Park) See My, What a Busy Week!
RIGSKETBALL FINALS: THE WOOLEN MEN, WOODEN INDIAN BURIAL GROUND, MINDEN, GRANDPARENTS, GAYTHEIST, THE WE SHARED MILK, MISTER TANG
(Holocene, 1001 SE Morrison) Unless you're living under a rock or really don't care about local music at all, you know that PDX Pop Now! took place last weekend under the sizzling hot sun in Southeast Portland. Opposite the main stage, you might have noticed a brightly painted van adorned with a basketball hoop—AKA Rigsketball. This highly conspicuous vehicle belongs to Bim Ditson of And And And, who has made it his mission to figure out just which Portland band is best at slamming three-pointers and coming up with their own inventive Rigsketball moves. After three rounds, it all winds down tonight, when the winner band will be crowned. But we're all pretty much winners when we can celebrate this growing tradition with a free show, a killer lineup, and a van decked out with a collapsible basketball hoop. This is gonna rip! RACHEL MILBAUER Also see My, What a Busy Week!
VIN BLANC/WHITE WINE, YOUR RIVAL, WILD ONES
(Bunk Bar, 1028 SE Water) Joe Haege of 31Knots/Tu Fawning notoriety returns with his sophomore LP under the nom de plume Vin Blanc. Returning to visit Portland following his departure to Los Angeles last year, Haege's singular bizarre midi-punk maelstrom is on full display throughout In Every Way but One, giving spotlight to the less post-punky elements employed in his revered 31Knots, and more of the beat-heavy meditations on Tu Fawning's excellent A Monument. Guitars are sparse tinsel on In Every Way, but Haege has the tendency to make the most out of very little (case in point: the invading presence of "I'm Here"), and is easily one of the more engaging performers to rep Portland in the last 20 years. Vin Blanc's new LP is given a proper release tonight via Party Damage Records. RYAN J. PRADO
SON VOLT, COLONEL FORD
(Aladdin Theater, 3017 SE Milwaukie) Son Volt—along with bands like Whiskeytown and the Old 97's—got scooped up by major labels in the late '90s in the hopes that alt-country would be the next grunge. Of course, Jay Farrar formed Son Volt after the breakup of Uncle Tupelo in 1994 (which also sent Jeff Tweedy on to Wilco). After releasing a handful of rootsy rock records, Son Volt went on hiatus, making a return in 2005. By all accounts, Farrar never missed a beat, and Son Volt has since released three more albums, including 2013's genuinely twangy, easygoing Honky Tonk. Alt-country as a name is all but dead, but most of these bands have persevered in one form or another. Tonight, you get one of the best. MARK LORE
THE DOUBLECLICKS, SARAH DONNER
(Secret Society, 116 NE Russell) Earlier this week, the Doubleclicks released their video for "Nothing to Prove." It's a remarkable thing, and it'll make "Nothing to Prove" the standout track on their latest, Lasers and Feelings. An impressive feat, given that the album contains some of the geeky Portland duo's best songs yet, like "Can't You See the World Is Ending," an anthem that wouldn't be out of place on Buffy Summers' iPod, and "The Mystery's Gone," an all-too-accurate reflection on the disappointment of actually meeting, in real life, the people you like on the internet. The "Nothing to Prove" video features women and girls holding up handwritten signs ("My Transformers played with my Cabbage Patch Kids"; "That look of surprise when I talk about Star Trek? It gets old"; "Why are you surprised I want to be an astronaut when I grow up?") that earnestly, cleverly destroy the toxic "fake geek girl" myth. Like the best Doubleclicks stuff, it's funny, heartfelt, and heartening; expect more of that tonight, when they share a stage with delightful local comedians Bri Pruett and Barbara "Also Has a Blogtown Column!" Holm. ERIK HENRIKSEN Also see My, What a Busy Week!
W.C. BECK AND THE PORTLAND COUNTRY UNDERGROUND, BARNA HOWARD
(Alberta Street Public House, 1036 NE Alberta) As one of the featured players in Portland Country Underground—the ballyhooed rotating ensemble of country purists who usually grace the LaurelThirst stage every Monday night—W.C. Beck represents the contemporary avenues by which classic country can move forward. Utilizing relatable songwriting, and, often, a mandolin, Beck's gritty compositions and twangy vocals hearken to outlaw country's heyday. On Quivira, the brand-new LP Beck's releasing tonight, he's backed by PCU, who really are just one of the best ramshackle groups of rambling maestros in town. As such, the album lives and breathes in the pocket, pulsing with smart leads, crisp harp, ululating pedal steel (as found on "Good Enough Ain't Good Enough"), and fantastic harmonies throughout. It also serves as Beck's farewell show before he moves to Paris. RJP
EVAN CAMINITI, VESTALS, GOLDEN RETRIEVER, NAMES
(Disjecta, 8371 N Interstate) As half of the San Francisco band Barn Owl, Evan Caminiti is no stranger to sculpting soundscapes out of a guitar and synth, but his solo ventures haven't just been more of the same. Take last year's Dreamless Sleep, for example: While Caminiti and co-conspirator Jon Porras often take Barn Owl's desert rock into dark and foreboding territory, Dreamless Sleep offers blissed-out ambient forays and warm, meditative excursions—less dirt and grime, more clouds and stars. It's not unlike a lot of the nouveau new age found in certain corners of experimental music, but it's worlds away from the by-the-numbers drone that crowds them. MATT SULLIVAN
(Oregon Zoo, 4001 SW Canyon) There are precious few songwriters more consistent and well rounded than Randy Newman. Nevertheless, I have to justify my love of Newman to virtually everyone I ever discuss him with, including self-identitfied "music snobs." It's downright ridiculous. Were people seriously that susceptible to those MADtv sketches? Is the Toy Story association really that significant? For every "You've Got a Friend in Me," there's a song like "I Think It's Going to Rain Today"—arguably one of the best songs ever written. For every toothless and goofy vignette like "Short People" there's a song like the show-stopping "Political Science," perhaps the most effective critique of bellicose cowboy culture in the form of a song. If you still don't like it, don't worry. You'll grow into it. MORGAN TROPER
CLINTON STREET BLOCK PARTY: 1939 ENSEMBLE, THE LOWER 48, THE NEEDFUL LONGINGS, NEIGHBORS, THANKS, RUBY PINES
(SE 25th & Clinton) See My, What a Busy Week!
MUSÉE MÉCANIQUE, JUSTIN RINGLE, JUSTIN POWER, SEAN FLINN
(Piano Fort, 1715 SE Spokane) Where you been, Musée Mécanique? The Portland chamber-folk quintet carefully deposited the lush, graceful Hold This Ghost into the world way back in 2008, played many live shows around the globe, and then... silence. While the band's members have been busy with other musical endeavors since then—including Laura Gibson, Portland Cello Project, Nick Jaina, and lots more—we haven't heard the band's own zoetrope-like sounds in quite some time. Tonight, in their first hometown show in two years, Musée Mécanique make their long-awaited return, and with further good news: Their second album, From Shores of Sleep, is finished and will see release early next year. Tonight they perform the new album from start to finish, accompanied by visual projections, making this the public debut of Musée Mécanique's second era. NED LANNAMANN
(Oregon Zoo, 4001 SW Canyon) LeAnn Rimes got her start at the tender age of 13, and in 1996 she became the youngest country star since Tanya Tucker more than two decades before. While I knew Rimes had been around a while, I had no idea she had been so prolific—at age 30, she already has 15 albums under her belt. Over the past two decades Rimes has veered from her country roots in favor of more traditional pop, only to return with This Woman in 2005. Whichever style she adopts, her voice is always up to the task. That and her sense of adventure with each release is what has always set Rimes apart from the Faith Hills and Shania Twains. At 30, LeAnn Rimes has nothing to prove. It'll be interesting to hear what she does next. ML
W.C. BECK, BARNA HOWARD (EARLY SHOW)
(Doug Fir Patio, 830 E Burnside) See Friday's listing.
EL-P, KILLER MIKE, DESPOT, KOOL AD
(Hawthorne Theatre, 1507 SE César E. Chávez) When word came a while back that booming, thoughtful Southern rapper Killer Mike and hip, gritty NYC producer El-P were working together, some called them an odd couple. But last year, Mike's excellent solo album R.A.P. Music killed that talk, and now here's Run the Jewels to dig it up, smack it in the mouth, and call it names. Released as a free download—bargain of the year, y'all—Jewels finds Mike and El in battle-rap beastmode, trading off motormouthed, shit-talkin' verses with the cartoonish glee of a great horror movie. On R.A.P. Music, Killer Mike spit eloquently about race, gender, politics and beyond; 75 seconds into Jewels, he shoots a poodle as a typically combustible El-P beat soundbombs its way into your brain. And on "Get It," El sums the duo up thusly: "We're overly fucking awesome." He's 100 percent correct. BEN SALMON
HUSTLE AND DRONE, HANDS IN
(Rontoms, 600 E Burnside) Hustle and Drone (Ryan Neighbors and Kirk Ohnstad) make bumpin' club music. Their sweet electronic beats are the soundtrack to late nights spent soaring through the city and dancing to your heart's content. The group's pop-soaked songs are accompanied by an artillery of strobe lights and fog machines, creating an awesome, energetic spectacle. You will instantly be pulled in by these catchy, flashy songs—and might even get a Radiohead cover to boot. If you're in search of a Sunday fling with some fun and sexy music, look no further than the Rontoms patio. RM
LEISURE LLC, JEANS WILDER, EMOTIONAL
(Valentine's, 232 SW Ankeny) Tonight's show guarantees a gaze into the West Coast's most pronounced hypnogogic popsters. Lo-fi doesn't begin to describe the degree to which these musicians steep conventional rock in an acid bath of effects and layers of ironic detachment. Jeans Wilder has been tearing it up as the alter ego of San Diego's Andrew Caddick, and his sun-damaged, warped surf rock channels a wholly Californian outcast spirit akin to Ariel Pink in all its meandering vocals and hazy guitar noodles. All info about Jon Jurow's (formerly of Chrome Wings and familiar gatekeeper at tonight's venue) latest venture Leisure LLC stems from online demos, and promises to be the left-field alternative pop rock to soundtrack your AM radio summer. WYATT SCHAFFNER
DONNA THE BUFFALO, THE BELIEVERS
(Doug Fir, 830 E Burnside) There's a little something for everyone in Donna the Buffalo's music; from the stoned Phish fanatic, to the Cajun Zydeco lover, to the little kid at concerts who always needs to dance. Unlike your usual alt-country band, Donna and "the Herd" infuse zydeco and reggae into their plucky sound with smooth finesse. Starting and headlining a roots music festival in Upstate New York for the past 20-plus years, Donna the Buffalo have produced nine albums and played more than their fair share of shows all over the US. With accordion waltzes and bluegrassy banjo, Donna is a nice convergence of cohesive instrumentation, spontaneous jams, and melodic, warm vocals. ROSE FINN
THE CULT, WHITE HILLS
(Roseland, 8 NW 6th) If all you ever heard by the Cult was the arena-ready chorus of "Fire Woman" or the AC/DC-aping opening riff from "Love Removal Machine" on classic rock radio, you might have filed them away under butt-rock. To be sure, that's part of the Cult's DNA, but there are also traces of goth, post-punk, and heavy metal, not to mention Ian Astbury's powerhouse pipes. On occasion, the Cult found the sweet spot in that Venn diagram—mostly just on sophomore album Rain, so here's hoping for heavy Rain in Monday night's set. Show up early for Hawkwind devotees White Hills, whose So You Are... So You'll Be comes out in late August and offers a more refined blast of the band's space-rock. MS