Purity Ring, Blue Hawaii, the Thermals
PURITY RING, BLUE HAWAII
When you listen to Blue Hawaii, try to imagine all the forlorn and pixelated Skype conversations that take place between distant boyfriends and girlfriends every day. Their latest album, Untogether, lyrically describes a relationship in repose, while musically conjuring shitty internet connections and vexing moments of reticence. Raphaelle Standell-Preston sings candidly, reflectively, and somewhat dispassionately, but occasionally her voice is modulated and pulled apart into tiny unrecognizable shards. Meanwhile, collaborator Alexander Cowan sets down cavernous and alluring guitar grooves that can leave you in a doleful and techno-addled stupor.
Headlining tonight are the comparatively punchier Purity Ring. From the name alone you can tell the duo sings holy praises of the human body, and their Shrines album often depicts lush scenes of fleshly movement. Reimagining the dance club as a far-off mausoleum, each Purity Ring song is like an elaborate crypt springing to life: There are lots of moving parts operating in a unique musical cuneiform, and when you spend too much time deciphering it all, you lose the whole experience. Neptune, 8 pm, $21.50.
THE THERMALS, WIMPS, LA LUZ
One of my principal musical fears lately has been that the Thermals are now known as "lifers." In their 10th year of existence, it means that they have ostensibly grown up and started making more adult-sounding records. But while the Thermals might have dialed back their bratty nature and lo-fi production values in recent years, Hutch Harris and company still make post-pop-punk music designed to connect your anger to your brain. Maybe the macabre Now We Can See or the relationship woeful Personal Life don't hit quite as hard, but The Body, the Blood, the Machine's youthful celebration of love, rebellion, and salvation has got to be in every angry/angsty kid's desert-island-discs collection. All previews of their upcoming album, Desperate Ground, indicate that it's poised to be a giddy return to the band's dizzying heights. Two of Seattle's finest new bands open, the snot-nosed, thumping Wimps and celestial, surf-rocking La Luz. Neumos, 8 pm, $15.