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The sleepiest music week all year!
Jetman Jet Team, (blouse)usa, YourYoungBody
(Vermillion) Those looking to blast the cobwebs from their mind and the fungus from their ears after their NYE revelries could do worse than catching Jetman Jet Team in the flesh. Onstage with their rotating Dreamachine, JJT set their instruments for the heart of the sun and the soul of the shoe. Right now, they're the closest thing Seattle has to a My Bloody Valentine or Medicine. The music of (blouse)usa—the solo project of Benjamin Thomas-Kennedy, drummer for psych-metal leviathans Lesbian/Fungal Abyss—deviates greatly from that of his other bands: It's an elegant electronic soundtrack for inner- and outer-space exploration that gets damn near Eno-esque in spots (think Eno's '80s and '90s ambient output, not his '70s rock excursions). (blouse)usa is one of the most enjoyably schizo musical entities in the city. DAVE SEGAL
Pocket Panda, the Ames, Kite Repair
(Tractor) Fact: Pandas do not hibernate. Instead, during the winter months, they move to lower elevations where temperatures tend to be higher. And, unlike other types of bears who can sleep through the winter without nourishment, pandas must eat all the time. Hungry bears! But Seattle's Pocket Panda have been hibernating lately, working on new material that they're going to share with us in the New Year. Hey, that's now! So if you've liked the lovely indie-rock orchestrations that the band has shared with us thus far (recommended if you like Hey Marseilles), you'll definitely want to warm up at the Tractor tonight to see what they've been working on while huddled up in their cave. MEGAN SELING
(Snoqualmie Casino) For casual listeners, the Tubes are best known as the new-wave band behind the 1983 MTV hit "She's a Beauty." But for die-hard fans, the Tubes are something else entirely: a band of highly theatrical San Francisco freaks whose multimedia live shows—blending social satire with quasi-porn—remain legendary. According to online reports, the Tubes of 2013 are harking back to their roots, with a high-drama stage show lorded over by a shape-shifting Fee Waybill. At the Snoqualmie Casino! DAVID SCHMADER
Orkestar Zirkonium, Balkanarama, Compassion Gorilla
(Columbia City Theater) Sometimes, musical instruments that aren't traditionally used in rock, metal, or punk freak me out. For instance, I once stumbled into a St. Patrick's Day parade—right into an impossibly large army of bagpipe players. After I regained my footing, I stopped to listen—to really hear the sounds they were making. A couple of tears unexpectedly rolled down my cheeks, for no other reason than the sounds were beautifully weird to my ears. The last time I saw the 13-member brass-and-drum ensemble Orkestar Zirkonium rolling down the street, I experienced a similar feeling of being overwhelmed and teary-eyed. Not to say that Ork-Z's music isn't anything but celebratory—and they're one of the finest marching bands Seattle has ever known—I'm just kind of a sheltered weirdo. KELLY O
PonyHomie, Redwood Plan, Ever-So-Android, Jabon
(Chop Suey) This year—in not too many weeks, in fact—the Redwood Plan are going to release their new full-length, Green Light Go, a follow-up to 2010's Racing Towards the Heartbreak. Think Q and Not U crossed with So Many Dynamos. Think booty-shaking crossed with head-bobbing. "The Scenery and Melody" sounds a bit like the Killers, which I mean as a compliment, and "Your Fair Share" has a riot grrrl/early-'90s-in-Olympia vibe (also a compliment). Their CD-release show isn't until February, so this will be a good opportunity to get a peek at the new material while also stretching out those dance muscles—I'd hate for you to get a cramp at their album-release party next month. MEGAN SELING
Fainting Goats, Bill Patton, I Love You Avalanche
(Blue Moon) Though they share their name with a well-known Seattle gelateria, Fainting Goats hail from a far sunnier place—Santa Cruz, California. That may explain why their music is as summery as a glass of lemonade. Listen closely, though, and you'll hear lyrics about bar fights, troublemakers, and growing apart. Oh, and before they got the band together in Santa Cruz, these guys met at a karaoke bar in Alaska. Who knows what other surprises they'll have in store for you at the Blue Moon! (The tavern, not the burger place.) HALLIE SANTO
Don't Talk to the Cops, Stephanie, Dude York, Wimps
(Sunset) See Stranger Suggests.
Neurosis, Tragedy, Black Breath, Stoneburner
(Showbox at the Market) Originally formed as a hardcore punk band almost 30 years ago, Neurosis have earned status as the wise grandfathers of all that is heavy. Influencing too many acts to name, much of their work is considered to be "thinking man's metal"—though an inane term for two obvious reasons, it's meant to let you know that Neurosis are thoughtful. Their 10 carefully constructed studio albums have mutated slowly and gracefully—bending the boundaries of sludge, doom, post-metal, and industrial on their slow roll into the atmosphere. Their latest album, Honor Found in Decay, was released earlier this year and, because Neurosis don't tour often, you should make this show a 2013 priority. EMILY NOKES
Elton Jah, Skablins, Longstride, Island Bound
(Nectar) Oh, hey, did you see "Elton Jah" and think, "Whoa... is that an Elton John reggae cover band?" WHY YES, YES IT IS. Sometimes, the world decides to take four things that can be the best or the worst of all life's miraculous offerings—in this case, Elton John, reggae, cover bands, and puns—and stir them up in a big ol' pot. What comes out? Well, the dudes in this Spokane band are really serious about their jams, and they have an elaborate (fake) backstory and insane costumes. You can see them play their reggae "Saturday Night's Alright for Fighting" on YouTube. Also, the lead singer got the idea from his high-school friends' band Dread Zeppelin, which is also nuts. It's January. Try something new! ANNA MINARD
Seattle Jazz Vespers
(Seattle First Baptist Church) See Stranger Suggests.
Imperials, Hekate, Two White Opals, Tyler, DJ Domenica, DJ Jermaine
(Vermillion) If you name your musical project after the goddess of "magic, witchcraft, the night, moon, ghosts and necromancy," as Seattle's Hekate did, you'd best deliver some proper sonic darkness. The one show by Hekate (led by Thousand Statues' Micaela Tobin and Moths' Ambrosia Bartosek) I've seen didn't quite live up to their self-proclaimed status as "femme fatale stoner doom" (excellent term, by the way), but there is potential here for something moodily mystical and primally paganistic. Local quartet Two White Opals—who feature the guitar and mandolin playing of Leigh Stone and Cody Burns—conjure an atmosphere of beautiful melancholy through their subtly stormy rock. Also, let it be known that DJs Jermaine and Domenica (the latter of Hollow Earth Radio) have very good, esoteric musical taste that encompasses a lot of styles to stimulate the mind and body. DAVE SEGAL
Jennifer O'Connor, Chris Brokaw
(Crocodile) This should be a soft and hazy show for a gloomy winter night during the sleepiest music week all year. Jennifer O'Connor is a beloved singer-songwriter whose soft, almost ambient melodies are like a cloud your consciousness can sleep on. She's performed with Nada Surf, and her last record for Matador was produced, recorded, and mixed by John Agnello (Sonic Youth, Dinosaur Jr., others). Chris Brokaw used to play in Codeine and Come (and, according to his Wikipedia page, played drums for GG Allin). His guitar sound is slightly more angular and jangly than O'Connor's, but is still sweet and dreamy. Lean into the mistiness of Seattle's first week of 2013. BRENDAN KILEY
Curl up with an engrossing e-book.