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Up & Coming
Lose your krautrock freakazoids every night this week!
The Good Wives, Telekinesis, Aaron Kirby, Blackheart Honeymoon
(Crocodile) It's a damn shame the new Telekinesis record, Dormarion, won't be out until April, because the first single, "Ghosts and Creatures," is probably my favorite Telekinesis song to date. Sole permanent band member Michael Benjamin Lerner has written a bunch of great, addictive pop songs in the past—the chorus to "Tokyo" still gets stuck in my head on a regular basis, even if I don't hear the song for several months—but "Ghosts and Creatures" puts the pop to the side to take a trip into space. I can't wait to hear how much of the new album is dedicated to these experimental, atmospheric journeys. MEGAN SELING
Fen Wik Ren, Cadet, Soft Hills, Midnight Blooms
(Barboza) One of the city's most accomplished psych-pop bands, Soft Hills compose exceptional melodies and conjure dreamy mirages of mellow-gold sound that will resonate strongly with anyone who digs Zombies member Colin Blunstone's solo works, Beachwood Sparks, or David Crosby's classic 1971 LP If I Could Only Remember My Name. Their new album on German label Tapete, Chromatisms, glistens with mature, sharply written songs sung with earnest mellifluousness by Garrett Hobba; they will grow on and haunt you, especially in your vulnerable moments. Fen Wik Ren are a new trio led by ex–Pica Beats's Ryan Barrett. Bassist Andre Zapata and drummer Alexandra Geffel join Barrett to create solid, if familiar-sounding, indie rock to which you can meaningfully push up your black-framed glasses. DAVE SEGAL
Mystikal, Neema, DJ Swervewon, Dyme Def, Feezable the Germ
(Neumos) Mystikal? Really? Is this the same guy who, with the help of two bodyguards, forced a female hairdresser to give a blowjob and filmed it? The same Mystikal who was found guilty of this sex crime and sentenced to six years in prison? This is the Mystikal who is coming to our town to get down? This is the "Dirty South" sex offender who rapped: "Big tittie bitches catchin' Mystikal fever/These niggas know, these niggas know when it's Mystikal season/Big tittie bitches catchin' Mystikal fever/These niggas know/These niggas know when it's Mystikal's fever"? What's this world coming to? CHARLES MUDEDE See also My Philosophy.
Big Business, Helms Alee, Rabbits
(Crocodile) Big Business? Helms Alee? Fuck yes! But you already knew that. Not only have we gone on and on about the greatness of both of these bands ad nauseam in The Stranger (sorry about that—we just get so excited sometimes!), but Seattle's lovers of all that's heavy and loud have, too. Newer to the scene, though, and possibly not yet on your radar are Rabbits, an unrelenting, booming Portland band featuring members of VSS, Angel Hair, and Pleasure Forever. If you love Big Business and Helms Alee, Rabbits will be your new obsession, so be sure to get to this show on time (and pick up a pair of earplugs on the way). MEGAN SELING
(Jazz Alley) Attention, whippersnappers who think Kenny G's name is nothing but a smooth-jazz punch line: Show some fucking respect. If you are a white person who was born between 1986 and 1989, there's an 85 percent chance you were conceived to a soundtrack of Kenneth Bruce Gorelick's breakthrough Duotones. (If you are a nonwhite person who was born between 1986 and 1989, the same holds true for Anita Baker's Rapture.) So the next time you're tempted to mock Kenny G's music or hair or inability to take a joke, remember: You probably wouldn't be here if the margarine tones of Kenny G hadn't inspired your dad to cram his sax in your mom's gorelick. DAVID SCHMADER
B-Lines, Ubu Roi, Ex-Girlfriends, Sailor Mouth
(Chop Suey) If you like it straightforward and loud, tonight's your night. B-Lines spit out good, old-fashioned, tightly wound punk—fast and yelly, but on the catchier end of the hardcore spectrum. Many of their songs are influenced by their home city of Vancouver, BC, balancing the right mix of humor and apathy to keep it real. Also on the bill are Seattle's Ubu Roi, whose "recorded with a single microphone" demos erupt with jagged noise thrashing around some pretty satisfying riffs. With Sailor Mouth (aggressive, reminiscent of a screaming match that's about to end in a black eye) and Ex-Girlfriends (scrappy and loud with a pop bent). EMILY NOKES
The Breaklites, RA Scion, ILLFIGHTYOU, Jai X Jrm
(Crocodile) See My Philosophy.
Blond:ish, Kadeejah Streets, Ramiro, James Ervin, Bryan Lyons
(See Sound) See Data Breaker.
Aesop Rock, Rob Sonic & DJ Big Wiz, Busdriver
(Neumos) See My Philosophy.
(Jazz Alley) See Thursday.
Mega Bog, Koda Sequoia, FF, Punishment
(Heartland) See Underage.
The Exquisites, Your Rival, Kathy, Family Band
(Ground Zero) See Underage.
School of Rock: Stop Making Sense
(Triple Door) For most artists, live albums are souvenirs for existing fans. But once in a while—James Brown's Live at the Apollo, Frampton Comes Alive!, Cheap Trick at Budokan—a live album takes on a life of its own, functioning as a pop breakthrough and winning the artist millions of new fans. Such was the case with Stop Making Sense, the concert album/film soundtrack that threw a lasso around 10 years of Talking Heads' brilliance and offered it up whole to the new audience the band was earning via MTV. Tonight, the Talking Heads' de facto greatest hits are brought alive onstage by the faculty and students of Seattle's School of Rock. DAVID SCHMADER
Stag, the Purrs, Little Hearts
(Barboza) When so many bands are trying to find the next best thing, it's always nice to be reminded that the classics never die. So long as you do it well, rock and roll can just be loud, fun, and uncomplicated. And Stag do it so well. There won't be any Transformer-looking stage setups, perching a dude with a laptop high above the crowd tonight. There will be guitars, harmonies, and riff-filled songs about good times and hating the girl but loving her records. Packed with bouncy choruses, Stag's new self-titled album is rightfully drawing comparisons to Cheap Trick. Summer's a long ways off, but I can see this being a really nice soundtrack once the temperatures finally get over 70. MEGAN SELING
Skerik Trio, Hardcoretet, Industrial Revelation
(Comet) Seattle saxophonist workaholic Skerik has a collaboration rap sheet that's as long as a 19th-century Russian novel. Major players like Medeski Martin & Wood, Larry Coryell, Funky Meters, and Buckethead tap him for his versatile ability to range from leather-lunged blasts of sonic action painting to mellow sonority. Skerik's own project number in the double digits. The man is a riveting dynamo onstage. Local quartet Industrial Revelation (Evan Flory-Barnes, Ahamefule Oluo, D'Vonne Lewis, and Josh Rawlings) is one of those freewheeling jazz bands that revel in stylistic diversity—great, expressive players having fun stretching lithe musical muscles in several different formations. DAVE SEGAL
Domokos, Nordic Soul, Kid Smpl, DJAO
(Lo-Fi) See Data Breaker.
Deepchild, Recess, Adlib, Joe Bellingham, Withrock
(Electric Tea Garden) See Data Breaker.
The Trashies, Wimps, Big Eyes, Stickers, Loud Eyes
(Black Lodge) See Underage.
(Jazz Alley) See Thursday.
Brain Drain, Prizehog, Johnny De Courcy, Low Hums
(Vermillion) Sometimes you don't have to scream it from a rooftop. Sometimes you don't even have to say any words at all. When it's time to pack that old dog in a truck—and drive and drive and drive until you reach the land where the Joshua trees grow, so your long-suffering best buddy can enjoy his last sunset or two while listening to you pick your banjo in the magical desert where Gram Parsons's spirit still roams free—when this time comes, you should take Low Hums' 2012 self-titled first album with you. It's the perfect psychedelic-folk soundtrack for your quiet, important, but not-unpleasant journey. KELLY O
Aceyalone, Jnatural, Pat Maine, Brainstorm, Black Magic Noize, JumpmaNewz
(Nectar) See My Philosophy.
(Jazz Alley) See Thursday.
The Walkmen, Father John Misty
(Neptune) "Is this guy joking?" I wondered the first time I saw Father John Misty. He was performing "Only Son of a Lady's Man" on the internet somewhere. His demeanor was so deadpan, the lyrics so goofy, and the music so... beardy. Wasn't he a Fleet Fox? It's true. Misty's 2012 mega album Fear of Fun was something I took in peripherally, until the soulful weirdness crept in and suddenly I was having lengthy conversations about his dance moves with waiters I'd just met. His performance at last summer's Block Party was endearing—swaying around smiling with his hands on his hips like, no biggie, this is fun, right? And what about that time he spent the day angrily tweeting at Pitchfork about some Pitchforky review they gave him? Hilarious! Plus he's also, y'know, really talented. EMILY NOKES
(Triple Door Musicquarium) Kareem Kandi is a saxophonist who studied at Cornish College of the Arts, teaches jazz composition at Tacoma School of the Arts, and regularly performs around the region. His 2012 album See What I'm Saying is a solid work of jazz art. It contains eight tracks, seven of which were composed by Kandi (one is a standard, "Something Wonderful"), and features Rob Hutchinson on bass and Julian MacDonough on drums. None of the pieces has any waste, any fat, and Kandi blows through them with the alacrity of Bird but the heaviness or even seriousness of Coltrane. If you want to spend a couple of hours looking at a winter garden or a park under cloudy skies, this music will certainly improve the experience. CHARLES MUDEDE
Jetman Jet Team, Ecstatic Cosmic Union, Rainbow Wolves
(Rendezvous) I've been yapping about the greatness of Seattle shoegaze/krautrock freakazoids Jetman Jet Team and gently transcendental psych duo Ecstatic Cosmic Union for a minute now (they deserve your unconditional love; make it a priority to see them live), so I'm going to focus on Rainbow Wolves. The solo project of Randall Skrásek (Hypatia Lake, Soft Hills), Rainbow Wolves finds the talented multi-instrumentalist—you should see him simultaneously drum and play Moog synth—exploring experimental electronic music with a sense of wonder. Track titles like "Astral Brain," "Wizards Cathedral," and "Radio Waves from Beyond" offer strong hints of the mad-scientific creativity on display. Get lost in odder space at Skrásek's Soundcloud page (soundcloud.com/rainbow-wolves). DAVE SEGAL
The Sweetlix, the Do Wrongs, Say Banzai
(Comet) The Do Wrongs make big, swampy, Southern-tinged rock 'n' roll that favors minor chords, prowling vocals, and a hint of voodoo that casts spells from the book of Gun Club or the Cramps. Say Banzai play uplifting, bluesy rock jams and, according to their bio, "They don't play 'funk' as much as they actually play funky." The Sweetlix are a trio from West Seattle who play high-energy rock without unnecessary bells and whistles. They're not trying to be Rush; they're just trying to get a rush. Did I really just write that sentence? Am I keeping it in? Yes. EMILY NOKES
Father John Misty, Rose Windows
(Neptune) See preview.
Stop Biting: Teeko, Introcut, Suttikeeree, WD4D, SeanCee, AbsoluteMadman
(Lo-Fi) See Data Breaker.