Common Market, Total Experience Gospel Choir, Thee Emergency, Feral Children, the Tallboys Old Time String Band
(Neumos) See preview.
D.Black, Spaceman, People$, DJ Evil Twin Bros
(Chop Suey) See My Philosophy.
Three Legged Dog, the Bill Bondsmen, Cyanide Destruct
(Funhouse) Break out the egg yolks and getcher liberty spikes all sharp 'n' pointy for THIS show... locals Cyanide Destruct, who rip some solid hardcore, Three Legged Dog, and Detroit's Bill Bondsmen, who also rip the hardcore, '90s style! Rumor has it, backed by the Bill Bondsmen, will be special guest "thee" Al Milman. Al gets special guest status, as he will be performing a few of his Al Milman Sect hits, some goodies, I'm told, from the time when he invented "punk" rock... 1946 I think it was. His cameo is a bit of a celebration of this past July's welcomed release of the Al Milman Sect/Man-Ka-Zam complete discography. Oh, and don't forget which way the pit rotates... AGAINST THE GRAIN! MIKE NIPPER
A1 Bassline, Levi Clark
(Re-bar) See Data Breaker.
Red Bull Big Tune Beat Battle: Elzhi, Black Milk
(Neumos) This year, Big Tune is even bigger than Big Tune—the hometown edition of this now-national, head-to-head producer battle also features some heavy-caliber hiphop performances. Black Milk and Elzhi (he of Slum Village) are both Detroiters who benefited from the late, great Dilla, and two of the most buzz-heavy talents coming up—Milk as a hotly sought-after producer and Elz as simply one of the very best cats touching a mic right now. While this event is dedicated to the beatsmith, the producer, it can't hurt to have an MC—one who could so easily eat Kanye's, Game's, or Lil Wayne's lunch without even offering them so much as a bite—gracing the stage. LARRY MIZELL JR.
Rancid, Less Than Jake, the Bloodclots
(Showbox Sodo) It's been nearly a decade since I've been able to publicly declare I like Less Than Jake without receiving scorn from my music-snob peers. For a while, the Gainesville, Florida, ska band lost their way—they ditched their horns, they lost their sense of humor, and they polished their records to a ridiculously clean degree. Sigh. Even they didn't seem to like their songs, live shows were performed with a "going through the motions" slackness. Sigh again. But things might be looking up! The dudes have returned to the sound and the songs when they seemed happiest—their latest album GNV FLA is packed with horns, addictive choruses, humor, and lots of that chika-chika guitar playing that was all over Pezcore. I still might get shit for saying so, but whatever—I fuckin' like Less Than Jake. Again. MEGAN SELING
Old Time Relijun, the Lights, the Whore Moans
(Comet) Doomsday cults and fire-and-brimstone preachers have been a part of American pop culture ever since England got rid of the Puritans. But few apocalyptically minded ranters are as much unhinged fun as Old Time Relijun. Band leader Arrington de Dionyso and his mates are firmly of the fiddling-while-Rome-burns tradition. On albums like 2012 and Catharsis in Crisis, the band turn the terminal mess of the modern world into a freaked-out, primordial funk racket, a toxic swamp boogie full of dancing demons, wicked witches, and feral fauna. Live, OTR are marked by wobbling upright bass, steady rhythms, bleating saxophone, stabs of guitar, and de Dionyso's wild-eyed, devilish howling. If the world is going to end, Old Time Relijun at least want you to have one last ecstatic dance. ERIC GRANDY
The Abodox, Patrol
(Jules Maes) It seemed like a waste for jazz-metal mathletes the Abodox to get a second guitarist. Even if it was Blaine Patnode from mythic shredders Swarming Hordes, it just seemed unnecessary. But then they started playing live. Maybe it was coincidental, or maybe because two-thirds of the trio had been sharpening their horns with the psychedelic doomscapes of Lesbian, but when the Abodox became a quartet, their tightly packed shitstorm of epic grind and schizo rock finally made perfect sense. The band is a blood-soaked Trojan horse with time changes and genre shifts that are often baffling but never contrived, with the precision of four dead-eyed snipers. For nearly 10 years, the Abodox have been tweaking and polishing their sound. They knew what they were able to sound like; now everyone else has the chance. SHANE MEHLING
George Duke, Anthony Hamilton
(McCaw Hall) Though this evening's concert is listed by local smooth-jazz station KWJZ as the "smooth summer finale," both of the featured artists are capable of a great deal more vitality than that may suggest. There will likely be some real musical merit underneath the wind chimes and cowbells. Keyboardist George Duke transitioned from soul-jazz beginnings alongside Les McCann to full-bore jazz rock with Frank Zappa and Jean-Luc Ponty to virtuosic funk with Stanley Clarke, though the last few decades have found him in an often mawkishly mellow tone. Singer Anthony Hamilton has made some good music in his career but is an always unusual and exquisite singer, most recently evinced on his work in the film American Gangster and as vocal foil to Al Green on Lay It Down. SAM MICKENS
Milanese, Cyrus, the Milkman, Cursed Chimera, and Clobber
(Oseao Gallery) See Data Breaker.
(Old Fire House) See Underage.
These Arms Are Snakes, sBACH, Helms Alee, Skull Kid
(Hell's Kitchen) Helms Alee are one of the most interesting bands in Seattle. Some songs on their debut, Night Terror (recently issued on Hydra Head), are as heavy as singer Ben Verellen's old project Harkonen—the drumming will tremble your feet, the bass will make your head throb—but on some tracks ("A Weirding Away," "Big Spider"), the band break up their intense explosions with moments of beauty via layers of glimmering guitar, piano, and loud, confident vocals. Helms Alee prove intensity doesn't always equal anger. A different breed of intensity (the spastic kind) marks These Arms Are Snakes, who will soon release their new album, Tail Swallower and Dove. Kids lose their shit at TAAS shows and singer Steve Snere is like the fucked-up punk-rock evangelist pulling their strings and causing convulsions. MEGAN SELING
Spiritualized, Grand Ole Party
(Neumos) Since 1997's landmark album Ladies and Gentlemen We Are Floating in Space, Spiritualized mastermind Jason Pierce has been excising the qualities that made his god-and-smack-inflected psych rock sublime. Surely he thinks recent albums like Amazing Grace and Songs in A&E represent Spiritualized's more "honest" side. Perhaps, but in the process of stripping down to the "essentials" his once lush approach to songwriting, Pierce inadvertently has highlighted his weaknesses (limited vocal range, parched timbre) at the expense of his strengths (inflating minimalist melodies into orchestral splendor, deploying effects to potently dramatic impact). Live, Spiritualized used to provide brain-scrambling soundtracks to acid trips. Now, they're about as trippy as decaf coffee. Bring back the "Electric Mainline," in the name of all that is hole-y, Jason! DAVE SEGAL
House of Low Culture, Mamiffer, Hemingway
(Rendezvous) House of Low Culture is the solo project of ISIS guitarist/vocalist Aaron Turner. Armed with his six-string, a pedal board, and a tabletop full of electronics, Turner reexamines the sonic opportunities contained within the guitar through extended studies in looping and unorthodox technique. Mamiffer are the product of creative mastermind Faith Coloccia, pianist for Palm Springs' defunct experimental noise-art troupe Everlovely Lightningheart, and These Arms Are Snakes drummer Chris Common. Coloccia's new project is rooted in her elaborate and solemn piano melodies and embellished by a rotating cast of auxiliary musicians. Hemingway open the show with their signature mix of caustic dissonance and deconstructed outsider pop. Fans of the obtuse, take note: This is not a show to be missed. BRIAN COOK
Nothing happens today.
(Showbox at the Market) Squeeze's Glenn Tilbrook and Chris Difford are the new-wave Lennon and McCartney. Thank you and good night. Oh, you need more? All right. Back in late-'70s Britain, these masterly songwriters had the gumption to skirt punk's bumptious fury and focus on crafting ingenious melodies that make critics reflexively type "the new-wave Lennon and McCartney." Squeeze's first four albums (spanning the years 1978 to 1981) yield a treasure trove of some of the sweetest tunes that will ever carom around your gray matter. Whether Squeeze can do these classics—and their lesser, later material—justice nearly three decades after their prime is the (at least) $40 question. DAVE SEGAL
Japanther, Shearing Pinx
(Vera) See Stranger Suggests.
Miss Kittin & the Hacker, Colby B, DJ Julia
(Neumos) See Data Breaker.
(Showbox Sodo) See preview.
Does It Offend You, Yeah? Team Robespierre
(Chop Suey) Does It Offend You, Yeah? look like a last gasp/cash grab for "nu rave"—patterned hoodies, (Ed) banger big beats, vacuous synth hooks—with one killer dance single, "We Are Rockstars," whose vocoder hook is just unfuckwithable. Team Robespierre are a different animal entirely. The Brooklyn five-piece recall Atom and His Package's geeky take on youth-crew hardcore—finger-pointing, sing-along choruses, and breakdowns filtered through synth-heavy geekiness—as well as the endearing ADHD spasticity of their fellow Brooklynites Matt & Kim or Japanther. That hyperactivity is especially pronounced live: At SXSW this year, the band incited what was likely the weekend's first mosh pit on opening night; later, playing a rooftop pool party, they repeatedly blew fuses, killing the sound and leaving the revelers dangling their legs in the water in the dark. ERIC GRANDY