THURSDAY 7/13

THE NUMBER 12 LOOKS LIKE YOU, HEAVY HEAVY LOW LOW, THE JON BENET
(Chop Suey) Pissed off skinny boys in trucker hats and/or beards playing really heavy and screamy hardcore are common. Far too common, if you ask me. The talented get swallowed in the swamp of the talentless, and generally the mediocre acts are the ones that make it to the top. Sigh... But before you write off Heavy Heavy Low Low as another one of "those" acts, check out their live show, where the boys generally go ballistic while delivering a healthy handful of bratty and sorta nuts metalistic growlcore. And I can't say for certain, but I'm pretty positive that the chorus to their song "Tell Shannon Her Crafts Are Ready" goes "OH! Shit! FUUUUCK!!!" That's rad. MEGAN SELING

THE AGGROLITES, NUFFSED
(El Corazón) Though its commercial prospects have dimmed since the mid-'90s, ska is not dead. Judging by their back-cover portrait, in which thuggish-looking members bookend bat-wielding singer Jesse Wagner, the Aggrolites appear especially hard to kill. Despite their soccer-hooligan-style appearance and track titles such as "Thunder Fist," this Southern California–based outfit shows impressive touch on its soulful love songs and displays affectionate reverence toward ska, reggae, and rocksteady throughout their self-titled second record. The Aggrolites originated as a backing band for Derrick Morgan, and their chirpy keyboard accents, undulating bass lines, and brass-punctuated rhythms recall that Jamaican legend's classic material. Making no concessions to punk pacing, these rude boys unravel the type of rich, unhurried grooves that, in the words of Red Stripe's pitchman, "help our white friends dance." ANDREW MILLER

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AWOL ONE, 2MEX & LIFE REXALL ARE $MARTYR, ASTRONAUTALIS
(Rainbow) While big-budget gangstas argue about whether L.A. ever fell off, those in the know have long been fuckin' with that independent hiphop from Cali, such as the ShapeShifters crew. AWOL is one of the most prolific cats out of the Shapes (which is saying a lot), and his new War of Art further showcases his signature sing-song delivery and hapless-observer POV. Fellow Los Angelenos 2Mex and Life Rexall (also of the ShapeShifters) have cooked up their own lil' side group, $MARTYR; now I haven't heard their Money Symbol Martyrs album yet, but damn! That is one clever band name. LARRY MIZELL JR.

BRAND NEW
(Showbox) Three years ago, Brand New set themselves up for one-hit-wonder status with the radio über-hit "The Quiet Things That No One Ever Knows." Their album Deja Entendu boasted a few more singles, earned 'em some more props, and as things started to die down, the New Yorkers quietly went into the studio to work on the follow-up album, which would make or break their short-lived career as international rock stars. They've been MIA ever since. Yeah, they're lumped in with assclowns like Fall Out Boy and Taking Back Sunday, even My Chemical Romance, but Brand New are different. Really. They're smarter, they're better. Of course, the fact that the show is sold out (and has been for a while) also attests that this "screamo" act has some staying power, but truth will be told when they finally release album number three, which is said to be finished, and set for release later this year. MEGAN SELING

FRIDAY 7/14

THE RAKES, EVERY MOVE A PICTURE
(El Corazón) See preview.

RAW POWER, DIRTBAG, BRISTLE, TOE TAG, BIGTOP
(Hell's Kitchen, Tacoma) What passes as contemporary hardcore is a pathetic, sad-faced parody of a THING which was once heavy with MEANING and honest INTENTION. Sure, today's kids have their hearts in the right place, but their hopeful reach is, well, hopeless. Luckily, a few of the originals stuck around! Raw Power, an Italian '80s hardcore band probably best known for their song "Fuck Authority," never went away, and, tho' by '87, they had crossed over to more "metallic" sounds (um... they ARE European), they never let silly trends or commercialism co-opt the band. For the past 20 years they've continued playing awesome, overtly political, metal-tinged hardcore without "updating," sadly, like still-active ex-hardcore group Corrosion of Conformity. MIKE NIPPER

SLAYER, LAMB OF GOD, CHILDREN OF BODOM, MASTODON, THINE EYES BLEED
(Qwest Field Event Center) See Rocka Rolla.

THE STARES, RIVULETS, DOLOREAN
(Sunset) In a world where Sufjan Stevens instantly gets name-checked in a Snow Patrol song, it's disappointing that more folks aren't hip to Al James and his wonderfully understated Dolorean project. Maybe that has something to do with the fact that "Dolorean" summons horrible '80s excesses, while James has mastered artful, unassuming, and devastatingly great songwriting. Dolorean's second album, Violence in the Snowy Fields, is the kind of record that creeps up on you, crawls under your skin, and then totally breaks your heart—in the best possible way. From the upbeat KEXP fave "The Search" through more desolate and desperate territory, it's the kind of record that begs for repeated listening and keeps revealing new treasures. There's a reason every musician I know whispers James's name in reverential tones. BARBARA MITCHELL

BOTTLE ROCKETS, THE TRIPWIRES, NORTH TWIN
(Tractor) If you'd never heard the Bottle Rockets until you listened to Zoysia, their latest release on Bloodshot Records, you might disregard them as tired roots rock, but unless you've seen them live, you really aren't getting the full picture. Frontman Brian Henneman is all heart, belting out tales of misery and redemption with well-seasoned, good-humored gusto, and drummer Mark Ortmann is a veteran worthy of respect (i.e., one of those drummers who could probably play the whole set blindfolded), regardless of your take on their chosen genre. Recognize. HANNAH LEVIN

WEST SEATTLE SUMMER FEST
(West Seattle) See Rocka Rolla.

SATURDAY 7/15

THE PRIDS, EXIT STORIES, C'EST LA MORT
(Comet) From Quasi to George Jones and Tammy Wynette, some of the greatest show-business duos have managed to divorce as man and wife, yet continue making incredible music together. Whether the seething chemistry between guitarist David Frederickson and bassist Mistina Keith is rooted in their overlapping personal lives, or just growing up listening to the same weird records, PDX pair the Prids craft captivating songs: the rumbling "The Glow," the dense din of "Infection," lickety-split guitar licks woven into "Forever Again." Their forthcoming sophomore full-length, ...Until the World Is Beautiful, relies on traditional post-punk timbres—melodic bass riffs, buzz-saw guitars, whip-crack percussion—yet heightens the tension with disquieting boy-girl vocal harmonies. Now that you've exhausted your Siouxsie and Cure B-sides/rarities box sets, lavish attention on these equally adept and bewitching practitioners of smart, ominous rock. KURT B. REIGHLEY

THE SWORD, AKIMBO, SAVIOURS
(El Corazón, early) See preview.

RAW POWER, DIRTBAG, THE BLOODCLOTS, DEATH PARTY
(Funhouse) See Friday.

WARPED TOUR
(Gorge) See Underage.

RUBY DEE & THE SNAKEHANDLERS
(Highway 99 Blues Club) See Border Radio.

WEST SEATTLE SUMMER FEST
(West Seattle) See Rocka Rolla.

THE PARKER BROTHAZ, BLES ONE
(Nectar) The Fed-Town duo of Stretch and Eclipse (AKA the Parker Brothaz) have kept Seattle heads talking since we first heard 'em on the Knockout Kings releases; in their newest incarnation, the two have upped the ante lyrically with their brand of pimp-tight braggadocious street-hop, and producers Kuddie Mak and J-Hen keep the two laced up like gym shoes. As our city's hiphop notoriety grows, do yourself a favor and check out all sides of it. Currently, those who patronize the "underground," "alt-rap," whatever-you-wanna-label-it crews snub the more "street" stuff. The implications of this are disturbing; look, just stop worrying about "that element" so much and go enjoy yourself at a rap show, damn it! LARRY MIZELL JR.

SUNDAY 7/16

AWESOME COLOR, S-S-S-SPECTRES
(Funhouse, early) Wanna know what Thurston Moore said about Awesome Color's new self-titled record, which the Sonic Youth frontman produced? He said, "It is a mother of a scorched groover." What the fuck that means, I can't say. I mean, I couldn't say, until I heard the record. Once I listened to the "scorched groover," it sorta made sense. Thurston Moore is all kinds of crazy, but the record is a mother of something, all right. Crunchy '70s rock and moments reminiscent of Big Star... it's what garage rock probably sounded like before grunge existed. It's also sorta bluesy and psychedelic at times, but I say that having never done drugs, so maybe my understanding of psychedelic is different than yours. In that mine's sober. But it's still crazy! And, ultimately, I think that's what Awesome Color are—they're a great sorta crazy. MEGAN SELING

WEST SEATTLE SUMMER FEST
(West Seattle) See Rocka Rolla.

MONDAY 7/17

You probably had a hard weekend—rest up.

TUESDAY 7/18

THIEVERY CORPORATION
(Moore) See preview.

WEDNESDAY 7/19

ONEIDA, A FRAMES, PYRAMIDS
(Funhouse) Brooklyn's Oneida are the rare group whose between-song banter is as enthralling as their music. The witty trio play a rugged brand of psychedelia that's more about pummeling your third eye until you hallucinate than it is about picking flowers in paisley shirts (not that there's anything wrong with the latter). At least that was the case up till 2005's The Wedding. On that disc, Oneida opted for an ornately melodic approach that proved they had deft songwriting chops, as well as hypnotic, hyperkinetic rock power (think Suicide jamming with Hawkwind as Glenn Branca conducts). With a bountiful catalog upon which to draw, Oneida will likely bestow highlights from their seven releases at tonight's show. Expect to be physically spent—and to laugh your ass off. DAVE SEGAL

QUINTRON AND MISS PUSSYCAT, THE TRASHIES, HARRY MERRY, ERIN JORGENSEN
(Sunset) New Orleans natives Quintron and Miss Pussycat survived Hurricane Katrina but lost their basement venue, the Spellcaster Lodge, to flooding along with much of their gear and several of Miss Pussycat's handmade puppets (seriously). Swamp Tech, their latest release on the Tigerbeat6 label, was recorded before this tragedy struck, and it provides the perfect fossil record for an imagined city of mutant discos, black magic, scrappy punks, charlatan entertainers, and debauched revelry. Quintron is part voodoo priest, part carnival barker, tearing up the organ while his invention, the Drum Buddy, keeps the beat. Miss Pussycat is the cool foil to his hysterical showman, singing her lines with casual charisma. Their live shows tend to be sweaty, theatrical affairs, and they often involve puppets (seriously, puppets). ERIC GRANDY

QUINTRON AND MISS PUSSYCAT, THE TRASHIES, HARRY MERRY, ERIN JORGENSEN
(Sunset) Jesse Cody Trash, the Trashies' wind-up toy of a lead singer, angrily broke his keyboard in half during the first song of a recent Tacoma gig, forcing the band to improvise a brilliant set. The Trashies become interactive with their crowds in a way that can get frightening—there's more full-body contact than some wrestling matches—but with their rope-a-dope drumbeats, you're always in for some duodenum-thrashing punk rock. Equal parts hate fuck, jazz fiasco, and bar brawl, they're the only band I can think of right now where anything can happen onstage. That alone is worth the price of admission, innit? PAUL CONSTANT

MEMBERS ONLY: DJ FUCKING IN THE STREETS, DJ CURTIS
(Baltic Room) See Rocka Rolla.

More

DIGABLE PLANETS, GUESTS: Thurs–Fri July 20–21, Neumo's

THE RENTALS, OZMA: Mon July 24, Neumo's

GRANT LEE PHILLIPS, KRISTIN HERSH: Tues July 25, Crocodile

Support The Stranger

TAKING BACK SUNDAY, FORGIVE DURDEN, THE SUBWAYS: Thurs July 27, the Premier

THE RACONTEURS, KELLEY STOLTZ: Thurs July 27, Moore

THE CAPITOL HILL BLOCK PARTY: MURDER CITY DEVILS, COMMON MARKET, PRETTY GIRLS MAKE GRAVES, BAND OF HORSES, HIMSA, BLACK ANGELS, AND MANY MORE: Fri–Sat July 28–29, 10th Ave and Pike St

BUZZCOCKS, THE ADORED, THE STRAYS: Sat July 29, El Corazón

ENDFEST: RED HOT CHILI PEPPERS, MODEST MOUSE, SNOW PATROL, WOLFMOTHER, EAGLES OF DEATH METAL, ROCK KILLS KID, NINE BLACK ALPS, THE SUBWAYS, THE GOSSIP: Sat Aug 12, White River Amphitheatre

GORILLA BISCUITS, SINKING SHIPS, SHOOK ONES, THE VOWS: Wed Aug 16, El Corazón

COMETS ON FIRE, KINSKI, 16 BITCH PILE UP: Sat Aug 19, Neumo's

WOLF PARADE, FROG EYES: Mon Aug 21, Showbox

DEVO: Sat Sept 9, Paramount

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2021 Social Justice Film Festival: ACTIVATE | REFUGE Online
Screening 50+ films that inspire and demand community action, October 7-17 at socialjusticefilmfestival.org.