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Alicia J. Rose
Dieter Moebius, Wobbly, DJ Mackro
(Barboza) See preview.
Grass Widow, Plaided, Wimps
(Chop Suey) Be wary of arty indie combos that name check the Raincoats as an influence: There's a fine line between sounding "ramshackle" or "off-kilter" and wasting an audience's time when you could've been rehearsing instead of screen-printing more tote bags. The records of Grass Widow, including the recently released Internal Logic, hinge on so many tiny moving parts—unconventional rhythms, stop-start tempos, interlaced vocal harmonies—that their live shows should be fraught with peril. Instead, the San Francisco all-female trio deftly navigates all those little maneuvers with quiet aplomb, delivering high-wire thrills with none of the embarrassing mishaps. KURT B. REIGHLEY
Julia Nunes, Ben Fisher
(Vera) Julia Nunes started by making goofy stop-motion videos with her friends in her dorm room and doing pop-song ukulele covers before they were ubiquitous, and the interwebs responded well. Now she's released five albums and opened for some of her idols—she toured with nerdy author John Green and then with Ben Folds, who contacted Nunes after seeing her cover of his song "Gone." ("When I got the e-mail saying, 'Open up for Ben Folds this May,' I thought it was spam," she told NPR. "His manager called my mom and said, 'Hey, Julia is ignoring Ben.'") She has an adorkable stage presence and should be tons of fun to see. Ben Fisher has the same name as my first-grade crush who moved to Indiana. So he probably likes Legos and playing four-square. ANNA MINARD
Dull Knife, Case Studies, Perpetual Ritual, Baby Guns
(Chop Suey) Dull Knife is a perfect name for this drone/weird/noise band from the Pacific Northwest. Garek Druss (A Story of Rats, Tecumseh, and Stenskogen) and Adam Svenson (Karnak Temples, Little Claw, and Du Hexen Hase) have been making improvisational sounds together as Dull Knife for more than six years. One of their newest songs, "Excavating," on local experimental music imprint Debacle Records, reminds me of the sound that reverberates in my head when the dentist drills into an old tooth, eventually and sickeningly shattering it and replacing it with a crown. The song's intro also includes a sound that's reminiscent of the sound of an old serrated butter knife being dragged against asphalt. The band's music and their name make perfect, maybe even poetic, sense. KELLY O
Champagne Champagne, the Knux
(Neumos) Champagne Champagne have been one of Seattle's best live hiphop acts for years now, but fans of the group's hard-rocking rap tunes and boisterous performances should be enthused at the inclusion of LA's the Knux on this bill. Comprised of brothers Kentrell "Krispy" and Alvin "Joey" Lindsey, the group sports a similar rock-infused hiphop sound as the Champagne gang. Though their 2011 Eraser pushed a little too far into pop territory, their multi-instrumental abilities and stronger stuff from debut Remind Me in 3 Days... should be enough to make for a solid live set to compliment Champagne Champagne's always-enjoyable antics. MIKE RAMOS See also My Philosophy.
(Paramount) See Data Breaker.
Veronica Vasicka, Rxch Wxtch, Sh6rl6s6, Actual Pain
(Electric Tea Garden) See Data Breaker.
(Barboza) See Data Breaker.
Chixdiggit, Old Wives, Smokejumper, Sweet Pups
(Funhouse) It's a shame that I only learned about Sweet Pups after their gear was stolen out of their van by some numbskull! You know what else is a shame? The looming Funhouse closure, so Seattle can finally have a place for Space Needle condo monsters to drink their McLattes. But don't move to Portland yet (or ever, actually, when there's a perfectly good Tacoma)—Sweet Pups have some other gear now and will play you solid rock and pop tunes wrapped in a beach towel. And the Funhouse is still there for you; enjoy it while you can. With Chixdiggit (Canadian pop punk), Old Wives (New Jersey rock 'n' roll), and Smokejumper (Seattle pop punk). EMILY NOKES
Neema, Eighty4Fly, Wingo, Heather Gin, more
(Nectar) Critics (including me) are often in the habit of crediting the rise of Seattle hiphop with the rise of Blue Scholars, a duo that dropped its groundbreaking, self-titled debut in 2004. But, as the emerging rapper Sol pointed out to me before leaving on a yearlong trip around the world, a lot of young cats were also impressed with a string of big and sold-out shows that Neema, a veteran rapper with a more commercial than indie vibe, had around the middle of the '00s. What this success made apparent to rappers like Sol was the huge local market for hiphop. No need to move to the Bay Area or LA; you could make a name for yourself here in the 206. CHARLES MUDEDE See also My Philosophy.
Atmosphere, I Self Devine, Carnage
(Showbox at the Market) See Stranger Suggests.
Dillon Francis, Flosstradamus
(Neumos) See Data Breaker.
Auditions for Fidelio
(Seattle Opera's Rehearsal Studio, 200 Terry Ave N) At least once in your life, you should be an opera supernumerary—meaning an extra onstage, one of those folks who doesn't speak or sing but who stands around being a milkmaid or a nobleman or whatnot. Operas are among the most weird and wonderful settings that ever were. And this week, Seattle Opera is holding auditions for supernumeraries for its fall production, Beethoven's (only opera) Fidelio. Absolutely no preparation is necessary. You just need to be a person "of all ages and walks of life" who wants to get onstage in the final scene as a prisoner or a "townspeople" to "celebrate the downfall of a tyrant, the establishment of justice, and the strength of a humble person empowered by love." Dozens of you are needed. Bring your whole block. The total time commitment will be 11 rehearsals and six performances. JEN GRAVES
Kingdom of the Holy Sun, Jetman Jet Team
(High Dive) Here we have two of Seattle's most interesting, up-and-coming psych-rock bands on one early-ass (5 p.m.) bill. Kingdom of the Holy Sun have impressed over the last two shows I've caught, with songs that brood with menace, mystery, and eros. Their new album, Pharmacokinetics, is full of opiated, serpentine jams that run from about three to six minutes: concise enough not to try your patience, long enough to work their beatific-sundown charms on you. Jetman Jet Team lean more toward the shoegaze end of the psych-rock spectrum, and they have all the best moves of that movement down to an artful science. Every song's a soaring sigh of lush, spacey bliss. DAVE SEGAL
(Sonic Boom Records) All together now: Menomena. Doo doo do doodoo. Menomena. Do do DO do! Menomena. Do do do doodoo, do doodoo, do doodoo, da do do do do do do doodoo do! Also, besides being the earwormiest of Muppets references, Menomena are a band! From Portland, Oregon, in fact, and they make records wrapped in some of the best album packaging you'll find this side of the Mississippi (2003's I Am the Fun Blame Monster! came with a handmade flipbook). This week, the duo celebrate the release of their new album, Moms (out September 18 on Barsuk), which is a sonic explosion of emotion, well-placed saxophone, and hook-filled melodies. This in-store is at 3 pm, and it's free. MEGAN SELING
Seattle Symphony Opening Night Concert and Gala
(Benaroya Hall) Ludovic Morlot's second opening night as the highly likable music director of the Seattle Symphony is an all-American program featuring Joshua Bell performing Leonard Bernstein's Serenade and former Washington State governor Daniel J. Evans narrating Aaron Copland's Lincoln Portrait. (There are cocktails, concert, and dinner tickets for those who want the full gala treatment, or you can just see the show.) JEN GRAVES
Dillon Francis, Flosstradamus
(Neumos) See Data Breaker.
The Fresh & Onlys, Terry Malts, Ziskis
(Crocodile) The Fresh & Onlys used to take you weird surfing; now they just want to take you love camping. In the desert. I don't know what I'm talking about. Yes I do, I'm just stumbling over the same ol' music words—surf, folk, pop, surf-pop, folk-pop, THERE. BOOM. We just had a genrezvous with the genre cops. Really, though. A line graph of the Fresh & Onlys' albums, oldest to newest, would plot their music (most notably Tim Cohen's vocals) rising in an arc from x-axis "distorted surf water fuzz" to y-axis "love poem on a horse." Things get very fuzzy (surf pop) and very horsey (desert twang), before trotting in the horse direction exclusively, and plateauing. And here we are. Camping in the desert. EMILY NOKES
Paul Revere and the Raiders
(Snoqualmie Casino) In 1969, some members of Paul Revere and the Raiders dropped prodigious amounts of acid and recorded an improvised LP under the name Friendsound called Joyride. The aptly named record became a cult classic among psych-rock heads for its dream-logic form fuckery, eerily beautiful melodies, and lysergic rave-ups. It must've felt amazing for these regimented, garage-pop hit-makers to stretch out unfettered like that. In 2012, Paul Revere and his mercenary soldiers—including Seattle guitarist Doug Heath—will likely be running through the band's many radio smashes ("Kicks," "Hungry," "Steppin' Out," "[I'm Not Your] Steppin' Stone," "Just Like Me," etc.), which still sound like carefree summers and teenage libidos. Only a world-class curmudgeon would scoff at that prospect. DAVE SEGAL
Last Bastion, the Wizards Sleeve, Trashcan Wizard, Year of the Serpent
(Funhouse) With the impending doom of the Funhouse—one of Seattle's finest rock establishments—and the inevitable rise of high-priced condominiums nearing, it's more important than ever to take full advantage of what we have there. If cheese-tastic power metal à la Rhapsody, Stratovarius, or even Whitesnake is your thing, then local longhairs Last Bastion will be sure to please your power-ballad and hyper-shredding tastes. With only a handful of shows under their belts, Tacoma band the Wizards Sleeve flawlessly blend thrash, soaring melodic death, and NWOBHM. Up the cheese! KEVIN DIERS
Animal Collective, Micachu and the Shapes
(Paramount) Centipede Hz, Animal Collective's anticipated follow-up to 2009's celebrated/overrated Merriweather Post Pavilion, is an expected deviation from the latter work's harmonious effects-pedal zone-outs. Its busy, brisk-tempoed arrangements use live drums instead of programmed ones, and ditch the layered vocal harmonies for a more lyrical, single-voice approach. It's always exactly what the Baltimore group wants it to be, but this facade of "complexity" can't hide the record's overproduced and generally unenjoyable nature. Regardless of Centipede Hz's quality, Animal Collective shows in Seattle are rare occurrences, and their live sets are a kind of ear-and-mindfuck spectacle unlike anything that can be experienced on headphones. MIKE RAMOS See also preview and Underage.
(Jazz Alley) My guess is that, in the heads of most people, the name Dwele rings the bell of a tune by Kanye West, "Flashing Lights." But long before Dwele collaborated with West, he worked with (and was indeed discovered by) his fellow Detroiters J Dilla and Slum Village. Dwele is basically D'Angelo with less Prince and more street. With Dwele, we often get a strange (even hypnotic) mixture of the ethereal and the profane, heaven and earth, polished sensitivity and urban rawness. Indeed, "Truth," the defining tune on his second album, Subject, opens with a warm, beautiful, loving melody and some very bad news: "I lied..." CHARLES MUDEDE
The Jealous Sound, Daytrader, Pacific Nomadic
(Sunset) Forgive me, Jealous Sound, for not giving your latest album, A Gentle Reminder, a fair chance upon its release. It's just that it sounds so much like Kill Them with Kindness, your 2000 release that I love, love, LOVE, that I just decided to skip listening to the new songs altogether and go back to the old favorites. My bad. After I forced myself to give it one more listen—to prep for the show, to write this blurb—I discovered it's actually a pretty nice album on its own. I like the extra injection of synth throughout, and "Promise of the West" flirts with a Pinback vibe. My only gripe: "Perfect Timing" sounds a bit too much like Kings of Leon's "Use Somebody." Just make sure you visit Kill Them with Kindness on tonight's set list and we'll be cool, okay? Okay! MEGAN SELING
(Showbox at the Market) Having already participated in the creation of the eternally brilliant punk trio Hüsker Dü, the hit-making power-pop outfit Sugar, and some highly beloved solo records, Bob Mould could feasibly relax into elder statesman mode. But as his ferocious recent appearance on David Letterman's Late Show made clear, he's still devoted to killing it. Mould's new tour does double duty: First, Mould and Co. celebrate the 20th anniversary of Sugar's Copper Blue by playing that alterna-rock classic from start to finish. Then comes a set devoted to Mould's new album (Silver Age, out now on Merge), laced with Hüsker Dü chestnuts. No past or present Mould fan should miss this. DAVID SCHMADER