IMAGINARY PANTS, WEIRD BUG
If Valentine's Day has left you longing for more swooning moments of tenderness, you should settle in for a night of dreamy pop this Friday night at Heartland. Imaginary Pants are purveyors of sentimental bedroom music, but it's not a case of the emperor's new clothes with this assiduous Vancouver, BC, duo. My favorite song from their self-titled album, "Ballad of Too-Small Wilson," can be heard as a love letter about our city's undersized NFL quarterback. Weird Bug are a punchier group, with songs about past lives and haunted houses, but they confront these apparitions head-on with a youthful and fearless élan. With Craig Salt Peters and Mselasco. Heartland, 8 pm.
THE HELIO SEQUENCE, TALKDEMONIC
The first show I ever attended in Seattle was a sold-out Grand Archives/Helio Sequence/Minus the Bear bill in 2007. I was 17 in a new city, and a mix of dumb luck and foolhardiness meant that I didn't buy a ticket beforehand but somehow snuck into a concert for the first and only time, and it probably changed my life. I was most blown away by the Helio Sequence that night. Hearing songs from their then-upcoming Keep Your Eyes Ahead were tailor-made for being out on my own for the first time. Lyrically, their material drew on many of the things I was trying to leave behind—first breakups, youth groups, high-top Converse shoes—while the duo's swelling, modern, and spacey instrumentation felt like the exuberant sounds of a future I was eager to meet. The Helio Sequence finally released a follow-up record last September, and Negotiations is a nocturnal album, a pleading letter describing a relationship that is fraught with betrayal. It's less melodic than the rousing numbers that made Keep Your Eyes Ahead stand out, instead unfolding slowly with more minimalist tones (one of my favorite albums of all time, Talk Talk's Spirit of Eden, immediately comes to mind during many of the songs). But even as lyrics recount the years gone by, while dreams are shattered and concessions are made, you still get the idea that singer Brandon Summers just wants one more night to hold the beleaguered object of his affection. Like any relationship that twists your gut or leaves your heart writhing on the floor, the Helio Sequence can make even the most reserved and spacious moments absolutely devastating. Neptune, 8 pm, $16.50 adv/$18.50 DOS.