THURSDAY FEBRUARY 18


BLUE OYSTER CULT
(Parker's Casino) The idea of going to see this particular installment of the Rock Dinosaur Collection seems fun enough, until one realizes that aside from "(Don't Fear) The Reaper," "Godzilla," and "Burnin' for You," Blue Oyster Cult didn't have a song worth listening to. However, the Zeppelin-inflamesuenced Long Island quintet did have a knack for coming up with hilarious song titles now and again, whether they meant to or not: "I'm on the Lam But I Ain't No Sheep" and "She's as Beautiful as a Foot" being but two choice corkers.--Kathleen Wilson

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SUGARHILL GANG, GRANDMASTER MELLE MEL, DJ SOUL 1, TURNTABLE BAY
(Showbox) Besides going down in history as having the first #1 hiphop hit with "Rapper's Delight," the Sugarhill Gang will soon release a children's album, Jump On It! (Rhino) featuring a new version of their famous song as well as educational rhymes like "I before E except after C" set to hiphop beats. Grandmaster Melle Mel reworks Grandmaster Flash's "The Message" on the record, rendering the lyrics suitable for kids' tender ears. Tonight's show, however, is strictly for the grown-ups, though most of us were still in short pants when we first rocked the line "HO-tel MO-tel Holiday INN."--KW

DIANE SCHUUR
(Jazz Alley) Through Sun, Feb 21. Dimitriou's Jazz Alley continues its "Grammy award-winners of the late '80s" lineup with Diane Schuur, who will pick up the microphone as soon as Dr. John clears out of town. But Schuur is definitely not just another vaguely familiar national act whose prime time has passed. Born and raised in Tacoma, this jazz singer will be talked about around here and around the country for a long time to come, mainly because of her absolutely immense natural talents. Her vocal range spans an amazing three octaves, and her sound is, at times, simply perfect. That said, Schuur has been known to make lousy musical choices in the past--her lengthy discography is marred by a handful of forgettable albums of sappy love songs. She may have done a duet with Barry Manilow in the '80s, but the good news is that Schuur has atoned in the '90s by stripping her sound down, getting rid of the tanned schmoozers, and returning to her straight-ahead jazz and blues roots. --Nathan Thornburgh

FRIDAY FEBRUARY 19

MONTE BANKS, JORDAN CORBIN
I enjoyed listening to the elfin conservatory graduate at the Baltic Room last Friday. It's really fascinating to have opera foisted on a hipster bar; half-pissed 20-30 year olds are undoubtably more ignorant and enthusiastic than the traditional opera crowds. The show also demonstrated how a perfectly good voice can be crap when wasted on Lilith Fair piano rock epitaphs of dead relationships. Her jazz work was kind of hit or miss, but I also think that a singer (or any other musician) can only have one master. That is, it must be very hard to really get a good jazz sound going if every other song you sing is "Ride of the Valkyries."--NTParini cd release party with Faster Tiger, the ruby dare, dj lay d caroline (Breakroom).

THE FASTBACKS, GAS HUFFER, THE PROMISE KEEPERS, MEDICATE, OLD LADY LITTERBUG, DEAD LETTERS
(Showbox) Six loud bands playing in two rooms at the same time! It could either be the rock and roll show of the year or a colossal blunder. With the Fastbacks, Gas Huffer, and the Promise Keepers performing in the showroom, and Medicate, Old Lady Litterbug, and Dead Letters in the lounge, the Showbox is sure to blow its lid. Why not be there to watch it happen?--Bradley Steinbacher

SYCOPHANT, 17 REASONS WHY, SPECIAL K
(Tractor Tavern) It's been a long time since Sycophant has played a show in town. Hopefully they have some new, catchy songs to play instead of the old, tired ones they usually drag out of their dusty song bag. If so, expect another great show. If not, expect the same great show you've seen a hundred times before. Either way, with 17 Reasons Why opening for them, the boys will have their work cut out for them.--BS

SATURDAY FEBRUARY 20

DJS JOHN ACQUAVIVA & TERRY FRANCIS
(Showbox) When it rains, it pours. John Acquaviva went through a 15-year career without visiting Seattle once, and now he's back for the second time in six months. Consider yourselves lucky. John's energetic, progressive house is a rare treat, made even better by the appearance of Terry Francis, who those in the know say is the English answer to Derrick Carter. They're both on tour to flamesog new mix CDs that, coincidentally, happen to be very good.--Matthew Corwine

CAKE, DIESELHEAD
(Moore Theater) If there was ever an overrated band that defies all level of negative criticism--no talent and rotten songwriting--yet still manages to pack a major city's large venue, Cake is it. People, ARE YOU INSANE? Cake is a horrible, awful band fronted by a smarmy teacher type who thinks he's so goddamn clever--the fucking Dudley Manlove Quartet of rock. Please make it go away.--KW

DJ MARK FARINA
(Last Supper Club) After an excellent (but quiet) set last month at the all-ages Planet E club, the unstoppable Mark Farina returns to Seattle to play for the grown-ups at Pleasure Muzique. This night's crowd is tailor-made for Mark's smooth and deep DJ style, so prepare yourself for a drunken, sweaty ride.--MC

HUUN-HUUR-TU THROAT SINGERS OF TUVA
(Meany Theater) They come from the remote Russian Republic of Tuva, located in south-central Siberia, and the music they play strikes an oddly familiar chord. Like American cowboys, Huun-Huur-Tu sings about horses and a lonesome life on the range. However, unlike our yodelin' yokels, these colorful Buddhist shamans back their galloping rhythms with surreal throat singing, an ancient technique whereby two or three distinct notes can be sung simultaneously. Recordings don't capture the full spectrum of these psychedelic overtones, so if you're undecided, check them out live at Ballard's Backstage Music & Video today at 2 pm.--James Kirchmer

THE MAKERS, THE RAPTURE, THE BLACK HALOS
(Crocodile) I get a kick out of the Sub Pop Mob, the ultra shiny, ever-ebullient crowd of label cheerleaders that swarms into a club the moment a BWSPP (Band With Sub Pop Potential) is about to take the stage. A few weeks back it was the Rapture who summoned the buzzing mass, which dutifully head-bobbed and slapped itself on the back as the rest of the crowd was either repulsed by the vocalist's look-at-me-I'm-so-WEIRD! schtick, or drinking itself silly while waiting out the Cure/Talking Heads rip-offs. No matter, the label wants 'em anyway. As you exit the band room, be sure to congratulate the Mob on its fine, fine work.--KW

PUSH
(Baltic Room) Once upon a time, Push were the backing group for local hiphop/jazz sensations the Sharpshooters, but of late they've gone their own way. Which makes sense, because they piled on the jazz heavier than the 'Shooters themselves did. As a sextet incorporating scratch DJs with the usual instrumental suspects, Push pull off the fusion game as an understated aesthetic, not a showy demonstration.--MC

SUNDAY FEBRUARY 21

HARVEY DANGER, PETER PARKER, NEVADA BACHELORS
(Crocodile) Those who tuned in to The End's "Young and the Restless" show two Sundays ago might have heard the Murder City Devils paying tribute to Harvey Danger by singing along to the band's much-loved single, "Flagpole Sitta," giving voice to everyone who just can't get enough of that song. It's been a while since Seattle's currently most famous pop band has sung that or any of its other hits in a local setting, providing a rare treat tonight at the Crocodile. Be sure to stand up front and request your favorite tune, loudly.--KW

DEEPER CONCENTRATION W/ THE BEAT JUNKIES
(ARO.space) Some DJs mix to produce a seamless flamesow of music, the main objective being to keep it rockin' on the dance flamesoor. Then there's the turntablists. They're a whole different breed of disc jockey. For them, the Technics 1200 isn't just a record player. It is an instrument, and a true turntablist wields it with vigor and finesse reminiscent of the interplay between Eddie Van Halen and his beloved guitar. The sounds these guys produce aren't meant to be danced to, but rather appreciated from an awestruck stance. It's experimental hiphop at its purest. --Courtney Reimer

MONDAY FEBRUARY 22

CHRIS MILLS
(OK Hotel)

TUESDAY FEBRUARY 23

DJ RALPHIE ROSARIO
(ARO.space) DJ Sol continues her mission to school Seattle's club scene by bringing Chicago's Ralphie Rosario to town. Ralphie is yet another quiet inflamesuence in the Chicago house scene; his hard Latin-inflamesuenced style is a unique take on Chicago's jackhammer sound, pleasing to trackheads and soul cats alike. Like most other Chicago legends, Rosario has never seen our wet little burg, so a warm (and dry) welcome is encouraged.--MC

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WEDNESDAY FEBRUARY 24

ELLIOTT SMITH, NO. 2
(Breakroom) Those old-school flamesoor sitters who prefer to hear Elliott Smith perform in an intimate acoustic setting--like he did in the days before he began rubbing elbows with Courtney Love and garnering Academy Award nominations--can do so tonight at the Breakroom, where he'll be playing stripped-down Northwest style.--KW