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Up & Coming

This Week's Music Previews

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WEDNESDAY 8/14

YEAH YEAH YEAHS, HAR MAR SUPERSTAR
(Edgefield, 2126 SW Halsey, Troutdale) See My, What a Busy Week!

CLOUD CONTROL, ELLIS PINK, SWAHILI
(Mississippi Studios, 3939 N Mississippi) Read our article on Cloud Control.

INTERNATIONAL POP OVERTHROW: THE ZAGS, DON'T, 302, THE LONESOMES, ANNY CELSI, CHRISTOPHER REYNE
(Alhambra Theatre, 4811 SE Hawthorne) Local power-pop up-and-comers the Zags have only been around since the beginning of the summer, but their lone recording, the can't-believe-it's-not-Squeeze "It's Over," has already earned them a considerable amount of buzz among this city's pop litterateurs. While it's difficult to write extensively about a band with such a limited output, it's easy to see the Zags' star-spangled trajectory: clocking in at just over two minutes (if you need any longer than that to make your point in the realm of pop music, you're doing it wrong), "It's Over" is a crash course in Beatlesque pop done right in the 21st century. The Zags fittingly headline the first show of the annual International Pop Overthrow festival tonight. MORGAN TROPER

BODY PARTS, ANIMAL EYES, SAMA DAMS
(Holocene, 1001 SE Morrison) Body Parts' music is a synth-fueled jaunt in the sun. Shared vocals between Ryder Bach and Alina Cutrono make a David Byrne meets Dirty Projectors sound—high-struck harmonies intercepted by choppy dance beats and catchy rhythms. This LA-based five-piece makes the kind of '80s-Madonna throwback music that has been resurfacing as of late, but brings it with a force that begs to be danced to. They will be accompanied by local favorites, the hauntingly beautiful Sama Dams, who are fresh off a nationwide tour, and the ever-boisterous and beloved Animal Eyes. This lineup offers a three-course meal of West Coast sounds, with a little something for everyone. RACHEL MILBAUER

THURSDAY 8/15

PLANNED PARENTHOOD'S FIFTH ANNUAL PINK PARTY: DJ ANJALI, DJ SAPPHO, DJ HERO WORSHIP
(Holocene, 1001 SE Morrison) See My, What a Busy Week!

VHÖL, ATRIARCH, HONDURAN
(Rotture, 315 SE 3rd) For a band that plays heavy music, genre adherence and specificity are overrated. It's much more interesting to throw off the metal nerds and slack-jawed journalists (points to self) that need to box things up so they can safely describe bands to their friends and readers. In the case of local trio Honduran, there are so many genres and sub-genres interlaced in their full-length debut, Street Eagles, it's not worth mentioning a single one. What is worth mentioning: If you enjoy tunes rife with ferocity and furor, Honduran is right up your alley. If you like it grinding fast or methodically slow, then you're also happy at home with Honduran. Basically, Honduran has enough energy to power 10 city blocks, and light the torches of the mobs rioting on those blocks, too. ARIS WALES Also, read our article on VHÖL.

DESCHUTES STREET FARE: THE MINUS 5, HOOK AND ANCHOR, MARIACHI LOS PALMEROS, FUNK PLASTIC
(Deschutes Brewery and Public House, 210 NW 11th) Portland loves its street fairs. Unless, maybe, you happen to live or work on those streets that annually cater to hordes of pedestrians, circus folk, food carts... and more circus folk. Still! Street fairs have their moments, and the Deschutes Street Fare (get it?) ought to have some killer ones. In its fourth year, the Street Fare is teaming up with local businesses and bands to raise money for Meals on Wheels. All proceeds go toward helping sustain the business of providing hot meals for the elderly, and that's hardly a bummer. Plus, the music lineup is pretty fantastic, with a little bit of funk (Funk Plastic), a little bit of mariachi (Mariachi Los Palmeros) and a presumably amazing set by Portland's own the Minus 5. Food highlights include Touchdowns BBQ and Cheese and Crack. I bet there'll be beer there, too. RYAN J. PRADO

SMITH WESTERNS, WAMPIRE
(Doug Fir 830 E Burnside) I can't be the only one surprised Smith Westerns are still around, let alone still making decent records. But this Chicago four-piece survived their growing pains and released Soft Will this year, an album that cribs from '70s glam and '80s new wave, but kills you with jagged hooks and big choruses. Smith Westerns have never necessarily been dangerous or challenging, instead relying on doing what they do well. That's not a backhanded compliment, either. These kids... err, men, know how to craft fantastic pop songs. It's something that often gets overlooked these days, but I get the feeling Smith Westerns will have the last laugh. MARK LORE

FOCUS TROUP, ETERNAL TAPESTRY, GRAPEFRUIT, 4x4 DJS
(Valentine's, 232 SW Ankeny) Tonight's show serves as a capstone to one of Portland's most prolific and enigmatic young musicians before he leaves for LA's sprawling wasteland of opportunity. Serving this community as a dedicated sound engineer and a jack-of-all-trades instrumentalist, John Rau is an impassioned promoter for avant-rock of all stripes. This will likely be the final show for his labor-of-love project Focus Troup, a group that sounds like trying to fall asleep with a head full of Ambien while listening to early Deerhunter. In Focus Troup's lone released track "To," pools of shimmering synthesizer loops and minimal drumming provide a backdrop to Rau's driven guitar lead, marching the band through a triumphant composition fused by experimental and pop undertones that harken to Yo La Tengo's emotive simplicity. Also featured will be the kosmische synth explorations of Charlie Salas Humara's Grapefruit and the anti-dad album rock of Eternal Tapestry, two bands that share in Rau's quest for epistemological zones. WYATT SCHAFFNER

FRIDAY 8/16

THE LOWER 48, TANGO ALPHA TANGO, BLUE SKIES FOR BLACK HEARTS, DJ AM GOLD
(Doug Fir, 830 E Burnside) Read our article on the Lower 48.

SATURDAY 8/17

SHOUT!: DJ DREW GROOVE, DJ HIPPIE JOE, KATRINA MARTIANI
(Eagles Lodge, 4904 SE Hawthorne) See My, What a Busy Week!

URAL THOMAS, DJ BEYONDA
(Star Theater, 13 NW 6th) See My, What a Busy Week!

PURE HARSH NOISE WORSHIP MMXIII: XOME BT.HN, PEDESTRIAN DEPOSIT, WORTH, PIECES, BURROW OWL, CONSTRAIN, SISSISTERS, WRONG HOLE, REGOSPHERE
(Ash Street Saloon, 225 SW Ash) If you've ever thought the bands Ash Street Saloon books are just too timid, here's a festival for you. Take in the rotten sounds of mangled electronics and mistreated instruments as noisemongers from across the country descend on the saloon with a lineup that includes Xome from Sacramento, Burrow Owl from Montreal, Pedestrian Deposit from Los Angeles, and BT.HN from Vancouver, BC, plus about half a dozen others. Locals Lifestyle Pornography and Regosphere from Eugene will serve their own sets of aural destruction. MATTHEW W. SULLIVAN

AND AND AND, GENDERS, OLD AGE
(Doug Fir 830 E Burnside) At their recent appearance at the Anacortes Unknown music festival, Genders played a set that pulled even the most exhausted and jaded festivalgoers up off of what might as well have been a flypaper floor. They provided a much-needed spark to a weekend that was almost too laidback at times. Upcoming album tracks "Show Me" and "Oakland" are perfect examples of the band's ability to craft light and sunny psych-pop songs. Just when you think you get it, the band shifts gears and pummels you with a new level of hardened intensity. Doug Martsch & Co. must have felt similarly about the local four-piece and their Treefort Music Fest appearance earlier this year, as Built to Spill selected the band to support their upcoming national tour. Be sure to catch them tonight at the Doug Fir before they hit the road. CHIPP TERWILLIGER

PALS STREET FAIR: FANNO CREEK, A HAPPY DEATH, BUBBLE CATS, TIGER HOUSE, PONY VILLAGE, TALKATIVE, DE LA WARR, JUST LIONS, L'ANARACHISTE
(SE 8th & Caruthers) Another weekend, another festival... but this one is super special. PALS Fest—presented by PALS Clubhouse, the renowned house show venue in SE Portland—is taking to the streets today, with an all-out BYOB party featuring all-local bands that you should definitely know about. Fanno Creek may or may not play us a song from their new record (how's that for a teaser?) and Bubble Cats will make our heads spin with their righteous punk rock. Talkative will trip you out with swirling, echoed harmonics, and Just Lions will fill you with classic pop tunes. This is booker Chris White's last big event at PALS for now, so it's only right to celebrate this legacy. RM

THE POLYPHONIC SPREE, HARPER SIMON, FRIENDS AND FAMILY
(Wonder Ballroom, 128 NE Russell) The Polyphonic Spree have been an anomaly since their inception in 2007. Boasting a huge amount of members (currently around 20), a penchant for variously colored robes, and an ear toward the symphonic-pop corners of the sonic universe, the Dallas-based conglomerate are almost definitely in a realm all their own. Their new album, Yes It's True, finds the band at its most unorthodox, splitting time between feel-good orchestral anthems and decidedly straightforward pop numbers like "Carefully Try," where ringleader Tim DeLaughter's fragile timbres swoosh and flutter like a relaxing summer breeze. It's possibly the Spree's most diverse recording to date, seeing as it was produced in stages over a long period of time. Either way, tonight's performance should be an uplifting spectacle. RJP

SUNDAY 8/18

THE MONKEES
(Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall, 1037 SW Broadway) It wasn't supposed to end that way. When Davy Jones died of a heart attack in February 2012, it was only a few short months after the Monkees' 45th anniversary tour—a reunion tour that was cut short by rumored conflicts between the three participating Monkees: Jones, Micky Dolenz, and Peter Tork. I saw that tour when it came to the Sleep Country Amphitheater in 2011, and one could tell something was off; that show left an unhappy taste in my mouth, feeling more like a cruise-ship revue than a concert by a band I've cherished since childhood. That unfortunate tour was almost the final word on a group whose legacy of spectacular '60s pop has been characterized by its long uphill struggle toward critical reevaluation from the rock snobs who denounced them as pre-fab TV stars. That they were, but their records reveal multitudes more: perfect pop from pop's greatest era. So when Dolenz and Tork announced a tour with remaining Monkees holdout Michael Nesmith, it was puzzling but very welcome news. Nesmith recently played a weird, great show of his solo stuff at the Aladdin, and seeing him back with the other two living Monkees should not only add a jolt to their performances, it will act as the best possible tribute to Jones' memory. Expect many tears to flow during the sing-along to "Daydream Believer." NED LANNAMANN Also see My, What a Busy Week!

MONDAY 8/19

SUN ANGLE, SAUNA, BAD WEATHER CALIFORNIA
(The Know, 2026 NE Alberta) See My, What a Busy Week!

TUESDAY 8/20

MELVINS, HONKY
(Wonder Ballroom, 128 NE Russell) Anyone who's interviewed or read interviews with Melvins frontman Buzz Osborne knows he can be a prickly son of a bitch. Intense might be a better word for it. But that intensity is likely what has kept the Melvins making heavy rock that's still vital and challenging after three decades, without selling their souls. And they're as productive as ever. In the last year and a half, the band has released a five-song EP, a full-length as Melvins Lite, another EP with original drummer Mike Dillard, and a covers album. And they're all good. As the Melvins celebrate 30 years, we should cerebrate the importance of this band. Let's cherish these fuckers. ML

SUMMER SLAUGHTER TOUR: THE DILLINGER ESCAPE PLAN, ANIMALS AS LEADERS, PERIPHERY, CATTLE DECAPITATION, THE OCEAN, REVOCATION, AEON, & MORE
(Hawthorne Theatre, 1507 SE César E. Chávez) The annual Summer Slaughter tour is putting an end to another br00tal summer and capping off this year's run at the Hawthorne. The mathcore stalwarts in the Dillinger Escape Plan headline this year's installment, and the band's recently released One of Us Is the Killer continues to introduce songier songs into the band's otherwise hyper-technical catalog. The rest of the lineup isn't lacking in chops, either, with Animals as Leaders, Cattle Decapitation, Revocation, and Aeon bringing the fretboard wizardry and full-blast assaults. The Ocean offers their post-rock/metal amalgam, while Periphery should appease the mall metal sect. MWS

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