Find Music Calendar »
Up & Coming
Seven-minute songs about mummies every night this week!
La Luz, Heatwarmer, Mega Bog
(Heartland) UGH. This lineup is filled with music that is so wonderful, it will make your heart ache. La Luz's '60s-inspired girl-group surf rock is impeccably executed, and it's delivered with the same stoic indifference infamously pasted on the faces of mod go-go dancers. The songs themselves, though, are so catchy that you won't mind the so-pristine-it's-almost-robotic performance. Plus, you'll need the rest after working up a sweat during Heatwarmer's set. Their video for the song "Rejoice" is literally a dance party. The song is part Who guitar explosions, part Weezer power pop, part eight-bit geek-out, and part yacht rock, and I love it so much that while writing this blurb, I've listened to it three times, and I can't bring myself to check out the rest of their songs. I'm good with this, really. It literally has all I need from a song crammed into five great minutes. MEGAN SELING
Document Swell, Yolke, Rainbow Wolves, Big Yawn
(High Dive) This Australian label Fallopian Tunes is fab. Producer Document Swell (Simon Cotter) creates a special strain of 21st-century exotica, but with beat science influenced by J. Dilla. Go to Document Swell's Soundcloud page and check out "Rainforestation" and "Dust Infauna" for a strange hit of the Other. It'll put a fresh bounce in your head-nod game. From the small sampling of Yolke songs I could find, they sound like a less grandiose Tame Impala, a less virtuosic Tortoise, and a warmer To Rococo Rot. Big Yawn—who could use a name change—combine big, quasi-danceable beats with ominous industrial-rock atmospheres. Show these excellent Oz musicians some atypical Emerald City hospitality. DAVE SEGAL
Iceage, King Dude, GAG
(Barboza) See preview.
French Horn Rebellion, Japanther, the Kitchen
(Chop Suey) It turns out that French Horn Rebellion are the product of two (zany!) brothers who literally rebelled against playing the French horn (they were once members of the Chicago Civic Orchestra) in favor of making dance beats. And boy, are those dance beats dance-y! Robert and David Perlick-Molinari create endlessly giddy, girl-crazy escalator disco for neon party people. Also playing: our old friends Japanther! Everyone's favorite Pratt brats (a Brooklyn duo who've been making arty and infectious noise rock/punk for more than a decade) will spill their catchy and sweaty jams all over Chop Suey until your legs can't dance anymore. EMILY NOKES
THEESatisfaction, Kingdom Crumbs, Sax G, OCnotes
Magma Fest: Lié, Koban, Black Hat, Bardo:Basho, Daniel Shuman
(Heartland) See Underage.
Jeff Samuel, Centrikal, Manos, Nora Posch
(Electric Tea Garden) See Data Breaker.
Thee Samedi, Elch, Seth Engle/John White, Superprojection, That's Cashed
(Sallal Grange Hall, North Bend) See Underage.
Ted Leo, Deathfix
(Vera) Okay, okay, there's a pretty obvious conflict of interest here that I might as well get out of the way: Ted Leo is my boyfriend. Kidding, of course! I'm married! To Ted Leo. When Ted Leo is not busy making me vegan waffles in our tree-fort mansion, he's out touring the land (as he's been doing for the last twentysome years strong), keeping it real with his indie-punk hits that ring sincere without being cheesy, political without being annoying, and upbeat without being... I don't know... Julie Andrews? Viva la Leo! As for Deathfix, writer Megan Seling tells me: "They have this song about celebrity houses that's like seven minutes long—it grew on me." EMILY NOKES
White Lung, Monogamy Party, Tacocat, DJ Nik C
(Chop Suey) Vancouver's White Lung play some of the no-bullshittiest of no-bullshit punk in recent years. Their 2012 album, Sorry, ramalamas with lethal linearity, caustically topped by Mish Way's piercing, Poly Styrene–esque vocals. Kenneth William's guitar works as a trebly ice pick to your noggin, and the beats tick over at a breathless pace. White Lung briskly get to the point (longest song on Sorry: 2:14), and you feel it immediately and intensely. DAVE SEGAL
Unknown Mortal Orchestra, Foxygen, Wampire
(Crocodile) Sam France and Jonathan Rado grew up in the Los Angeles suburb of Westlake Village and learned how to play a truckload of instruments before parting ways for college (France to Olympia). They reunited as Foxygen, and boy is that a good thing. Foxygen traverse sounds of classic-rock greats and a host of other genres with respect and perspicacity. They make what the Kinks, Bowie, and the Stones do seem easy, at times imitating them with impressive acumen; it always comes off as homage rather than derivative. It doesn't hurt that Foxygen inject healthy doses of their own invention into the proceedings or that they possess keen skill at writing nonchalant gems. Keep your ear on Foxygen, as they seem bound for greatness. GRANT BRISSEY
Nile, Theories, Funeral Age, Phalgeron, Bloodhunger, Those Who Lie Beneath
(El Corazón) After they've spent 20 years grinding out uncompromising, skull-crushing, Egyptian-themed death metal (though they call North Carolina home), it's safe to say we know what to expect from a Nile show: blast beats, double-necked guitars, skullets, seven-minute songs about mummies, pharaohs, kings, sweatpants, and last but not least, a whole lot of brutality. This time around, there are no touring openers, leaving four empty slots for some of the best local metal bands to showcase the rage—tech-death metallers Bloodhunger, blackened death-dealers Funeral Age, power/thrash metal trio Phalgeron, and Portland's Those Who Lie Beneath. Rip thy bong. Bang thy head. Repeat. KEVIN DIERS
Thrones, Midlife Vacation, Mutant Video, Total Life
(Heartland) See Underage.
Magma Fest: Rafael Anton Irisarri, Marielle Jakobsons, Logic Probe, XUA, Chrisman/Svenson
(Hollow Earth Radio) See Data Breaker.
Chelsea Light Moving, Grass Widow
(Neumos) Could Chelsea Light Moving be Thurston Moore's midlife-crisis hot rod after his breakup with longtime wife and Sonic Youth bandmate Kim Gordon? Possibly. But whatever the cause, the clangorously rocking self-titled album by Moore's new, younger outfit bears the hallmarks of a man bristling with renewed vitality after more than a decade of relatively sluggish Sonic Youth efforts—check the molten "Alighted" for one example among many. Grass Widow's nonchalantly pretty, lo-fi rock is a pure, understated joy. No current band does a better job of nailing mellifluous, multipart vocal harmonies to shaggy, hooky post-punk than this San Francisco trio. It makes total sense that Grass Widow opened for Raincoats when those British legends did their US reunion tour. Check out Grass Widow's coolly melodious 2012 release, Internal Logic, for nonstop chills. DAVE SEGAL See also Stranger Suggests.
(Triple Door) In 1992, I was living in Seattle and working at a bookstore owned and primarily staffed by lesbians, nearly all of whom loved good contemporary folk music. So when Nanci Griffith brought her '92 tour to the Paramount, nearly all my coworkers went, and every single one of them came back raving about the opening act, a woman who stood alone onstage with just a guitar and a humongous voice and the most beautiful songs you'd ever heard. The performer, of course, was Iris DeMent, who'd just released her debut album and was winning fans everywhere she opened her mouth. Two decades later, DeMent is back in Seattle, touring in support of Sing the Delta, her first album of all-new material in 16 years. No one who appreciates good old-fashioned country-folk should miss it. DAVID SCHMADER
Federation X, the Valley, Tacos!
(Sunset) Of course a band called Tacos! would end their name with an exclamation point, because tacos are great! Exclamation point! But if you're going to have the guts to name your band after one of the greatest foods ever created, then you better do 'em some justice. Thankfully, Tacos! do. The local duo, featuring former members of Sugar Sugar Sugar and Migas (these dudes like food), punish your ears in the same way as other badass, hard-banging bands—like Think Big Business and the Melvins. Hear it for yourself at tacosband.bandcamp.com—"The Eclipse" and "Cobra" are especially good for blasting that midafternoon haze out of your brain. MEGAN SELING
Joey Bada$$, Pro Era, Flatbush Zombies, the Underachievers
(Neumos) Even if '90s boom-bap revivalist Joey Bada$$ hadn't tried to start an online beef with Lil B "the BasedGod" that involved the Brooklyn teen recording a "dis track" in which he rhymed "lyrical missiles" with "rip through your tissue" (which I think about 85 percent of people that have ever freestyled have used some form of) and getting harassed by the BasedGod's #TASKFORCE online contingent to the point of deleting his Twitter account (which I'm informed is the 2013 equivalent of getting killed in a drive-by shooting), there would still be his last Seattle show. From having zero stage or mic presence, to trying to get a Neumos crowd to chant along with calls of "Brooklyn" and "East Coast," and even awkwardly botching handshakes with fans in the front row and having a joint passed onstage to his hype man fizzle out when he tried to hit it, it was probably the worst live rap set I have ever witnessed. But hey, REAL HIPHOP, right? MIKE RAMOS
SISU, Wooden Burial Ground, the Heligoats
(Chop Suey) The Heligoats lured me into listening to their Back to the Ache CD with a spot-on parody of the cover art for Wings' Back to the Egg, a 1979 album that's freighted with an inordinate amount of nostalgia for me, although I haven't listened to it in decades. Would this be an homage to that quirky, back-to-rock-basics record by Paul McCartney during one of his awkward phases? Um, not really. Instead, Back to the Ache sounds like the sort of earnest, jangly, folky pop that most people listening to indie music in the '80s called "college rock." Think ponderous Trouser Press Guide footnotes like Guadalcanal Diary and Miracle Legion (you remember them, right?), and shake your head over the nefarious presence of red-herring album art. DAVE SEGAL
Grave Babies, Useless Eaters, Nightmare Boyzzz
(Chop Suey) Useless Eaters is pretty much one hypertalented 23-year-old high-school dropout named Seth Sutton. Based in Nashville, Sutton writes, produces, sings, and plays most every instrument on the Useless Eaters' new LP, Hypertension. People open to 23-year-olds starting garage-punk bands—after clearly being influenced by artists on the UK label Rough Trade circa the late '70s—will be able to appreciate the Eaters' dark, angsty leanings. Garage-rock purists might pee-shaw Hypertension, finding no use for it at all. I say it's worth at least taking a bite. KELLY O
Major Lazer, Angel Haze, Lunice
(Showbox Sodo) Diplo and his Mad Decent label have been wildly increasing their influence in the EDM scene—Baauer's "Harlem Shake," for example, came out on Mad Decent subsidiary Jeffrees—popularizing dancehall, dub, reggae, and other bass-centric styles. For their new Free the Universe full-length, Major Lazer have reeled in an eclectic cast of guest musicians like Dirty Projectors' Amber Coffman, Vampire Weekend's Ezra Koenig, Peaches, Bruno Mars, Wyclef Jean, Santigold, Flux Pavilion, and Busy Signal. This is still primarily hyperanimated, alpha-human party music—an unabashed soundtrack for your next Caribbean-themed bash. DAVE SEGAL
Doldrums, Sean Nicholas Savage
(Barboza) Doldrums is 23-year-old Canadian Airick Woodhead, who just dropped the album Lesser Evil on Arbutus Records. The songs here skew toward the cute and hazy end of the electronic-pop spectrum. Sometimes Doldrums dips into bass music's trunk-rattling low-end pummel; sometimes he tilts into Mouse on Mars's wonderfully wobbly songcraft embellished with animalistic gurgles, birdsong twittering, and insectoid chittering; sometimes he achieves a weird keyboard drone that hovers between those made famous by Soft Machine and This Heat. Vocally, dude sounds like a lady, but he can sing better and with more sweet emotion than most one-man electro projects. Woodhead reportedly sometimes has two drummers accompanying him live; let's hope they appear tonight to augment Doldrums' intricately wonky beat programming. DAVE SEGAL