Soft Metals, Alexander Robotnick, Dennis Ferrer, Commodo
GET SWEPT AWAY BY CLASSY PORTLAND SYNTH DUO SOFT METALS
Synth duos still proliferate across the globe 30-plus years after the initial cold-blooded wave of synth duos surfaced—37 years if you go back to Suicide, 43 years if you go back to Tonto's Expanding Head Band. (I recommend that you go back to the latter two artists, often.) One of the Northwest's most accomplished synth duos, Portland's Soft Metals unveil classy, eloquent arpeggios and smoothly danceable beats beneath Patricia Hall's wistful, frosty vocals. There's a good chance Soft Metals will sweep you away. With Litanic Mask and Butchers. Barboza, 8 pm, $12 adv, 21+.
ITALO-DISCO LEGEND ALEXANDER ROBOTNICK MAKES SEATTLE DEBUT
Tonight's a rare chance to see/hear Italian electronic-music legend Alexander Robotnick (aka Maurizio Dami) play live. Under the auspices of Medical Records (whose owner, Dr. Troy, is also DJing tonight), Robotnick had his 1984 LP Ce N'est Qu'un Début reissued in 2010. It's gone on to sell out of two pressings and is now on its third. The album's a cheeky charmer packed with new-wave-slanted synth pop and campy Italo-disco. Aglow with catchy melodies and fueled by irresistible rhythms, Début peaks with "Problèmes d'Amour," a much-compiled club anthem that ricochets around your memory banks through a fantastic hook sung in French by Swiss chanteuse Martine Michellod. Robotnick has gone on to cut many more records in the disco, electro, and techno veins, and even ventured into Indian meditational music, but one senses the crowd will be clamoring hardest for his 30-year-old material. With Airport and Chris Davis. Barboza, 8 pm, $15, 21+.
AFROCENTRIC HOUSE MASTER DENNIS FERRER SOULS UP Q
This week's Studio 4/4 gets soulful with New York's Dennis Ferrer, who runs the respected Objektivity label. He favors a fairly traditional vocal-heavy, Afrocentric house-music style that will always have its hardcore devotees. If you want an apropos scenario in which to celebrate the influence of the late house pioneer Frankie Knuckles, you should catch Ferrer behind the decks. With Blueyedsoul, Brian Lyons, and Easy Hard. Q Nightclub, 9 pm, $12 adv, 21+.
The Shift Dubstep Session barges back into action with UK producer Commodo, who records for Deep Medi Musik, the excellent London label run by Mala of Digital Mystikz. Dubstep's rep has suffered a beating in recent years, but artists like Commodo are maintaining the genre's original impulses: atmospheres of brooding menace, beats that skitter madly and thud maliciously, and ocean-floor bass pressure. Experience some real-deal hardcore business, bruh. With Dubtek, Press, and Mind Mada. Contour, 10 pm, $10, 21+.