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Up & Coming

This Week's Music Previews

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WEDNESDAY 5/15

WHITE FANG, COLLEEN GREEN, HEAVY HAWAII, COMASERFS
(Star Theater, 13 NW 6th) See My, What a Busy Week!

THE BLACK ANGELS, HANNI EL KHATIB, WALL OF DEATH
(Wonder Ballroom, 128 NE Russell) Read our article on the Black Angels.

MILK CARTON KIDS, THE BAREFOOT MOVEMENT
(Aladdin Theater, 3017 SE Milwaukie) The most successful folk duos have been one of three things: emotionally earnest, politically earnest, or earnestly satirical. The Milk Carton Kids are all of these things or, possibly, none. (Their satirical tendencies are reserved for onstage banter.) For people overcome with crushing nostalgia for the likes of Simon and Garfunkel, but who can no longer take the lyrics to, say, "Bridge over Troubled Water" seriously, the Milk Carton Kids fill an important, albeit specific, niche. With close harmonies and lyrics that don't seem to have been written by Holden Caulfield, the Milk Carton Kids make music that is pleasant and lovely and could potentially trick a boomer into thinking a few songs are long-lost S&G B-sides. Their second album, The Ash and Clay, is folk music for the masses, tiptoeing around themes of love and politics, but not in a way you'd really notice if you aren't looking for it. REBECCA WILSON

THURSDAY 5/16

BLACK PUS, DEEP FRIED BOOGIE BAND
(Bunk Bar, 1028 SE Water) Read our article on Black Pus.

MORNING RITUAL, DE LA WARR
(Doug Fir, 830 E Burnside) Read our article on Morning Ritual.

YO LA TENGO
(Wonder Ballroom, 128 NE Russell) Yo La Tengo's latest release Fade—the band's 13th—has been universally well received, not because the band is breaking new ground necessarily, but because it's a perfect extension of what's come before. The record—whose cover shot was taken at Portland's Overlook Park—proves that, some 30 years later, Yo La Tengo can do no wrong. The band's music has always incorporated just the right amount of noise and beauty. And their leisurely observations have made an impression on a number of artists, including Jeff Tweedy and Barbara Manning. The term "indie" has been grossly overused, but as long as Yo La Tengo keeps putting out records, it will always mean something to somebody. MARK LORE Also see My, What a Busy Week!

EIDOLONS, BIKE THIEF, NOBLE FIRS
(Rotture, 315 SE 3rd) To say that Eidolons are influenced by Yo La Tengo [see above listing] is both an understatement and a generalization. Dan Byers' restrained, delicate vocals play off the band's cacophonously poppy instrumentation to form fully satisfying compositions. The band has had a busy year; they're getting ready to release a new album, did a live recording at Banana Stand, and have been consistently performing to growing crowds around Portland. Ferocious drums characterize the upbeat tracks, while slower ones boast dreamy slide guitar. They play with violin folk-rockers Bike Thief, and Noble Firs, a lively, surf rock-inspired project featuring members of Tigress. RACHEL MILBAUER

MOBB DEEP
(Alhambra Theatre, 4811 SE Hawthorne) To fans of classic '90s hiphop, the hardcore street duo of Albert "Prodigy" Johnson and Kejuan "Havoc" Muchita, together known as Mobb Deep, needs no introduction. They battled with Tupac, Snoop, and Jay-Z and collaborated with Q-Tip, Nas, and members of the Wu-Tang Clan. Their current tour coincides with the 20-year anniversary of their debut recording, Juvenile Hell, recorded when the two were still both in their teens. Even though that album didn't do well initially, the record paved the way for their second release, the golden-era classic The Infamous. This tour follows a very public and controversial falling out between the two founding members in spring of last year, so word of their reconciliation is a welcome one. RYAN FEIGH

FRIDAY 5/17

MAN OR ASTRO-MAN?, AUDACITY
(Doug Fir, 830 E Burnside) See My, What a Busy Week!

THE PAUL COLLINS BEAT, BLUE SKIES FOR BLACK HEARTS, THE CRY, THEE FOUR TEENS
(East End, 203 SE Grand) Paul Collins recorded an album in 2010 called The King of Power Pop, a title that might come off as a bit ostentatious if there weren't some truth to it. Collins formed the Nerves—the short-lived LA power trio—back in the late '70s with Peter Case and Jack Lee. From there he formed the Beat, whose 1979 debut is still one of the catchiest slabs of power pop around. That was a long time ago, but good pop songs never go out of style. Over the past few years Collins has been pushing to turn "power pop" into a movement. I can't imagine that involves much, except some good ol'-fashioned gripping and ripping. I mean, everyone's a sucker for a good pop song, right? ML

A SIMPLE COLONY, SWANSEA, RITCHIE YOUNG
(Mission Theater, 1624 NW Glisan) Michael Dodson and Lara Michell are A Simple Colony, and their first album Make It Start runs a wide gamut of styles, most falling into some category of careful, minor-key ballad. With acoustic and electronic textures and Dodson's pliable voice, the band escapes the trap of seeming scattered and unfocused—rather, A Simple Colony seem fully in command of all its various guises. The duo often performs acoustically on their own, but tonight's CD release show will likely see them in their full-band incarnation with bassist Nancy Hess, keyboardist Rebecca Sanborn, and drummer Ned Failing. NED LANNAMANN

SATURDAY 5/18

HARRY SMITH TRIBUTE
(Mission Theater, 1624 NW Glisan) See My, What a Busy Week!

BRAHMS' FIRST SYMPHONY: OREGON SYMPHONY
(Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall, 1037 SW Broadway) Achtung, procrastinators: Did you promise yourself you'd finally catch at least one Oregon Symphony concert this classical season? If so, heads up that tonight, tomorrow, and Monday mark the very last shows of 2012/2013, so get your skinny-jeaned asses in gear and grab some tix before the band embarks on their richly deserved summer vacay. Maestro Carlos Kalmar and the gang kick off this glorious program with a rousing seven-minute overture from Franz von Suppé before turning things over to guest soloist Jennifer Koh—a globally acclaimed fiddler who I guarantee will dazzle the crowd with a brilliant Hungarian violin concerto by Béla Bartók. Following Ms. Koh's gypsy virtuosity, Stumplandia's ultimate cover band will soar with the old-school sounds of Brahms' massive Symphony No. 1. Jesus H. Christ, people, pass up the PlayStation and nix the Netflix for just one goddamn night. It's high time for some fucking culture... unplug and get you some at the Schnitz! ANGRY SYMPHONY GUY

I CAN LICK ANY SONOFABITCH IN THE HOUSE, SEPARATION OF SANITY, JACKRABBIT, MATT WOODS
(Dante's, 350 W Burnside) "They don't make men like Andy Griffith anymore," sings I Can Lick Any Sonofabitch in the House's grizzled frontman Mike Damron on his band's new LP, Mayberry. It could be argued that they don't make guys like Damron anymore either. The band's long been a staple of the Northwest's Southern-fried punk underground, sharing stages with such touring acts as Drag the River, Two Cow Garage, and more. On their new album, ICLASOBITH treads familiar territory: Mike D's ongoing fuck you to conformity, spliced with tender, anthemic diatribes on family values, government, and religion. The energy of the band's beginning stages remains very much alive, which you can chalk up to the consistency in their lineup, from the rhythm section of Mole Harris and Flapjack Texas, to the fantastic harpist Dave Lipkind, to lead guitarist Handsome Jon. This release show will be a rocker. RYAN J. PRADO

MIC CRENSHAW, REDRAY FRAZIER, FINGERPAINT AFRO JAZZ, DJ DEFF RO
(The Know, 2026 NE Alberta) Local emcee Mic Crenshaw may choose to call Portland home, but it's abundantly clear that his musical influence extends far beyond the borders of our town. A recent trip to six cities in Africa as part of the Afrikan Hiphop Caravan found him touring with the likes of political rappers Dead Prez, who then found time to record the track "Superheros" with Crenshaw, featuring production by Maestro of D-12. Tonight marks the release of a new EP for Crenshaw, titled Bionic Metal. The resulting effort is an ode to his Midwestern roots, with prominent shoutouts to Minneapolis. It also finds him in the precarious position of rapping over rock production, a move which thankfully ends up sounding more like the Judgment Night soundtrack than it does Limp Bizkit. RF

PAINTED PALMS, PHONE CALL, BEAT CONNECTION
(Bunk Bar, 1028 SE Water) Reese Donohue and Christopher Prudhomme grew up on the same block in Lafayette, Louisiana, but didn't start making music together until they were separated by a few thousand miles in college. That sweetly Southern origin story belies the brainy complexity of Painted Palms' two efforts so far—their Canopy EP and the more recent "Carousel" 7-inch. Resounding vocals set against transcendent electronic textures make their music as pleasurable as it is interesting and even, yes, uplifting. Phone Call, the improbably handsome offshoot of local dance outfit Strength, will likely strike a more decadent note as they nail the atmosphere of a sexually aggressive '80s disco. Both of these bands will benefit from a crowd primed by a DJ set from Seattle's lauded Beat Connection. They are that unicorn of a synth band that inspires uncontrollable dancing while resisting every temptation to be campy. RW

DON AND THE QUIXOTES, FRUIT OF THE LEGION OF LOOM, THEE HEADLINERS, GHOST TRAIN
(Kenton Club, 2025 N Kilpatrick) It took 10 years for Portland's own Fruit of the Legion of Loom to release its first album, but Humandatory Genocide is now an actual thing, and one that will surely burn up the hit parade. After all, nothing says chart success like "instrumental concept album," and Legion of Loom's zooming, gonzo shredding is the sort of thing that makes music writers type words that wouldn't otherwise exist in the English language, like "frenetic" and "skronk." There are three acts to the sci-fi themed Humandatory Genocide, and the story itself is all laid out inside the CD booklet, although I doubt it will help much to get your bearings. Instead, sit back and let the instru-mental (sorry, another bullshit music critic tactic) trio's mathy, metal-tinged, progressive delirium work you over. Tonight's CD release is also the release show for Teflon Don, album number two from surf-rockers Don and the Quixotes. NL

LITTLE SUE (3 PM); RADIATION CITY (7 PM)
(Music Millennium, 3158 E Burnside) New Light, the new album from longtime Portland songwriter Little Sue, summons an impressive lineup of collaborators to flesh out her equally impressive quiver of folky tunes. Produced and recorded by Mike Coykendall, Sue's saloon-steeped compositions bounce with peppy pianos, ukulele, and an especially unusual addition of clarinet, courtesy of Jill Coykendall. Guest musicians include Decemberists/Black Prairie accordionist Jenny Conlee-Drizos, as well as fellow Black Prairie member Annalisa Tornfelt on vocals/violin for the excellent "Energy: Love Song for West Virginia." This afternoon show at Music Millennium is totally free, as are downloads of Sue's album from Bandcamp. In lieu of charging for the record, Sue is requesting that people contribute to various Portland charitable organizations; a list of Sue's recommendations can be found on her Bandcamp page as well. RYAN J. PRADO Later this evening at Music Millennium, Radiation City also do an in-store performance, anticipating the Tuesday release of their excellent new Animals in the Median album.

CANNIBAL CORPSE, NAPALM DEATH, IMMOLATION, CRETIN, WORLD OF LIES
(Wonder Ballroom, 128 NE Russell) The first time I saw the cover of Cannibal Corpse's debut album Eaten Back to Life—which shows a zombie feasting on its own intestines—I thought it was a joke. Song titles like "Bloody Chunks" and "Scattered Remains, Splattered Brains" added to that notion. Of course I wanted to hear it. That was 23 years ago. Since then the band has successfully topped itself with each release, writing songs whose titles I'm even afraid to print here... in the Mercury... okay, they have a song called "I Cum Blood." It's silly stuff. But Cannibal Corpse's B-movie horror metal has outlived many of its contemporaries, proving they've probably eaten themselves back to life on more than one occasion. ML

SUNDAY 5/19

ALELA DIANE, VIKESH KAPOOR, BARNA HOWARD
(Portland Playhouse, 602 NE Prescott) See My, What a Busy Week!

HURT, WITCHBURN, CELLAR DOOR, ELEMENT 57, MOHAWK YARD
(Hawthorne Theatre, 1507 SE César E. Chávez) Read our article on Witchburn.

BRAHMS' FIRST SYMPHONY: OREGON SYMPHONY
(Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall, 1037 SW Broadway) See Saturday's listing.

HUNGRY HUNGRY HIP-HOP: LUCAS DIX, EVVNFLOW, RUFUS SMALLTOWNZ
(Mississippi Pizza Pub, 3552 N Mississippi) Hungry Hungry Hip-Hop is a free monthly event created and hosted by Portland native Elan Eichler, AKA rapper Mighty Misc. That he's been doing this monthly since September 2011 speaks volumes in illustrating how much he cares about the local hiphop community. In addition to his infectious perseverance and tenacity, Eichler also has a great ear for talent, giving unproven up-and-coming artists the chance to perform alongside some hiphop heavyweights. Tonight's headliner is Lucas Dix, formerly of Hives Inquiry Squad and currently of Jellyfish Brigade. Dix's day job as an elementary school teacher prevents him from performing around town as often as he'd like, so this glimpse into his new project Diving Lessons is a rare treat. The fact that this month's show is part of the canned food drive Food Wars is all the more reason to attend. RF

SPECK MOUNTAIN, ANDREW GRAHAM AND THE SWARMING BRANCH, THE SLIDELLS
(Valentine's, 232 SW Ankeny) Fans of Opal, Kendra Smith, Mazzy Star, and Hope Sandoval should devote some quality headphone time to Speck Mountain. The Chicago band's lazed, glazed rock locks into the same time-stopping beauty-mongering of those artists' mellowest meanderings. On albums like Summer Above, Some Sweet Relief, and Badwater, Speck Mountain eke out gorgeous, laidback melodies marked by Marie-Claire Balabanian's consolingly downcast vocals and her and Karl Briedrick's dewy, bejeweled guitar textures. Easy does it, over and over, for Speck Mountain—who are promising a cover of Alex Chilton's jaunty "Hey! Little Child" on this tour. DAVE SEGAL

MONDAY 5/20

FABOLOUS, PUSHA T, PORTLAND EXPRESS, SUPANOVA, MR. C, CASPA
(Roseland, 8 NW 6th) See My, What a Busy Week!

BRAHMS' FIRST SYMPHONY: OREGON SYMPHONY
(Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall, 1037 SW Broadway) See Saturday's listing.

STAY CALM, WEEK OF WONDERS, WL, SURFS DRUGS
(Rotture, 315 SE 3rd) A few years ago, Orca Team were among the best bands in Portland that not many people paid attention to. They garnered a smattering of local press and played at all the "right" bars, but something about the band just didn't seem to connect with Portland audiences. The band packed their things and relocated to Seattle, made a single record (2012's excellent Restraint, which almost blew up), and called it quits. But here's the good news: Former Orca Team bassist/ringleader Leif Anders' new band, Week of Wonders, is essentially a continuation of his previous project, and it's terrific in all the same ways. The group's debut EP Failures is a quintessentially Pacific Northwest take on beach pop that manages to be nostalgic and reminiscent of I-vi-IV-V shit without ever being too desperately "retro." But most importantly, stripped of their aesthetic, the songs are fundamentally great. If Failures isn't an indication we've been taking Anders for granted, I don't know what is. MORGAN TROPER

TUESDAY 5/21

BLACK MOTH SUPER RAINBOW, THE HOOD INTERNET, OSCILLATOR BUG
(Hawthorne Theatre, 1507 SE César E. Chávez) See My, What a Busy Week!

SHOUT OUT LOUDS, HAERTS
(Aladdin Theater, 3017 SE Milwaukie) Daft Punk's much anticipated album Random Access Memories is physically released in the US today, and it's one of the biggest musical disappointments in recent memory, in which the French EDM pioneers opt for a lightly disco-tinged, incredibly repetitive album of soft rock that would send Christopher Cross into snoozes of boredom. While it seems obvious Daft Punk is reaching for the sort of jetstream adult-contempo that likely filled their parents' record collection (Serge Gainsbourg, Air Supply, Alan Parsons Project, possibly Floyd), they approach it like EDM, locking in their programmed, quantized sequences and letting them play for minutes on end with absolutely no development and no drama. For a completely successful, absolutely lovely version of the kind of airbrushed, slick, easy-listening Europop that Daft Punk has utterly bungled, turn your ears instead to Shout Out Louds. The Stockholm quintet's fourth album, Optica, is a gorgeous, wide-eyed, perfectly posed collection of gentle rock with not a single mussed hair or note out of place. Eighties-gazing singles like "Illusions" and "Walking in Your Footsteps" continue Shout Out Louds' string of wistful, highly processed pop songs, done with absolute mastery. NL

WHITE RAINBOW, JORDAN DYKSTRA, CASPAR SONNET, DJ MUSIQUE PLASTIQUE
(Holocene, 1001 SE Morrison) The latest project of über-talented experimental composer D. Reuben Snyder is Caspar Sonnet, who will be celebrating his full-length album release, Identify, for Portland's own Marriage Records. With a powerful, gorgeous tenor he articulates haunting melodies over unusual song structures that draw influence from baroque, lo-fi tribal, dark rhumba, and experimental kabuki. Snyder's dangerously alluring lullabies could easily draw you into a silky web of bygone-era romanticism, where you might forget reality for a moment in favor of a sunset voyage from which you very well may not want to return. CHRISTINA BROUSSARD

AND AND AND, SAMA DAMS
(Bunk Bar, 1028 SE Water) Though some musicians sound undeniably better with the benefit of a production studio and engineers, And And And sound drastically different. This can be a good thing. For example, I sometimes enjoy hearing their songs played at a relatively soft level, and I think the arrangements on Lost glow with the warmth of 1,000 sunsets. The downside is that the recordings capture nothing of the depravity, the loudness, the punk-rock spirit of their live shows. Not until now. In a fortunate development for posterity, And And And are the latest installment of Live from the Banana Stand, that beloved local series of sonic time capsules in the form of live albums. Finally, I can fit the frenzied chaos of And And And right in my pocket. There are several new and unreleased songs here, but the real pleasure is the raw, unfiltered versions of songs that I've grown so used to hearing in their mixed-and-mastered state. RW

THE DETROIT COBRAS, PANGEA, NO GOOD LOVERS
(Dante's, 350 W Burnside) One of the biggest surprises from last year's random show-going was a happenstance set I attended at Angelo's bar on SE Hawthorne. A packed room swayed with raised tallboys-in-fists to some raucous noise in the corner of the joint from a lineup curated by local punks White Fang. Los Angeles garage-punkers Pangea ended up being the perpetrators of said noise, and played a set that provoked me to run across the street back to my house to steal cash from a savings jar to buy every record they brought along to sell, which included the excellent Killer Dreams EP and the Living Dummy LP. The band has since steadily generated some serious buzz, culminating in a rumored recording collaboration with Ryan Adams. This is poppy, smart, sometimes fuzzy, always fun songwriting that has wiggled its way deeply into the folds of my favor, for whatever that's worth. RJP

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