Wednesday 5/1 at Showbox at the Market

Wednesday 5/1

Bonobo, El Ten Eleven, Kid Hops

(Showbox at the Market) See Data Breaker.

Bleached, Ex-Cops, Week of Wonders

(Chop Suey) See preview.


CyHi the Prynce, Thaddeus David, Bruce Leroy, DJ Swervewon

(Barboza) See My Philosophy.

Thursday 5/2

Masaki Batoh: Brain Pulse Music, Noisepoetnobody & Vance Galloway

(Chop Suey) Ghost frontman Masaki Batoh's latest endeavor finds him making music from brain waves in order to heal people from the trauma of the Great East Japan Earthquake of 2011. On Brain Pulse Music, he combines an experimental bioelectric procedure with traditional Japanese instrumentation to create alien Zen ambience and Harry-Partch-meets-Harry-Bertoia sonic sculptures. You may not have suffered directly from that awful quake and the resultant tsunami, but you can still benefit from Batoh's unconventional aural therapy. Seattle's Vance Galloway (guitarist and Decibel Festival sound engineer) and Noisepoetnobody (aka synth manipulator Casey Jones) complement the headliner's heady output with their own finely wrought drones and mysterious percussive rustlings. Expect to be gloriously confused most of the night. DAVE SEGAL

EMEFE, Tubaluba, Cascadia '10

(Nectar) Led by drummer Miles Arntzen, 10-strong Brooklyn ensemble EMEFE fuse Afrobeat with soul and funk in a manner not dissimilar to fellow American troupes such as Antibalas, the Daktaris, and NOMO (Chico Mann of the first two acts contributes guest vocals to EMEFE's most recent album, Good Future). Obviously indebted to Fela Kuti and Tony Allen, EMEFE show a greater tendency toward concision than do most Afrobeat disciples on Good Future. Shorter track-lengths allow EMEFE to intensify the groove science, and in keeping with Afrobeat's inherently celebratory tenor, they maintain a steady flow of ratcheting funkiness, clipped, chiming guitars, and boldly swooping horn charts that signify against-the-odds victories. DAVE SEGAL

Prom Night: Allen Stone 

(Crocodile) This is the first night of two sold-out nights of grown-up prom with Allen Stone. The Chewelah native with the golden hair and even goldener voice is headlining this prom-themed show to announce the official Bumbershoot 2013 music lineup (if it doesn't include him, this night will get awkward fast! Ba-dum ching!). The social media surrounding this show and its hefty price tag are kind of annoying, but I do love themed parties when they're done right. If you've already got tickets (lucky you), you'd better take the theme seriously and wear some awful shiny crap, then go drink in someone's parents' basement and lose one of your virginities. If you're not going, hey, you saved $50, and you can go ahead and try to get laid without smuggling wine coolers in your pants. ANNA MINARD

Friday 5/3

Debacle Fest: Expo '70, Swahili, Plankton Wat, Monopoly Child Star Searchers, Brain Fruit, Panabrite, Total Life, LA Lungs, Secret Colors

(FRED Wildlife Refuge) See preview and Stranger Suggests.

Bok Bok, Jimi Jaxon

(Chop Suey) See Data Breaker.

Prom Night: Allen Stone

(Crocodile) See Thursday.

Grenades, Smooth Sailing, Serial Hawk, Old Iron

(Comet) Torturously tempo-weary doom and "kvlt" black metal have garnered the lion's share of heavy-music coverage in underground media outlets in recent years. While there's certainly nothing wrong with artists taking their misery to the furthest extremes possible, there's only so much protracted amp-worship and monochromatic tremolo picking a metal fan can take. Thank hell for Grenades' Heaven Is Empty, a succinct and focused melding of Jehu-style guitar discord, post-metal dirge, and hardcore ferocity. Primal without being primitive and heavy without being heavy-handed, the Seattle group's debut LP is the everyman counterpoint to the black-cloaked, fog-drenched, rune-emblazoned, corpse-painted theatrics saturating today's metal underworld. BRIAN COOK

Oregon Symphony

(Benaroya Hall) Portland singer Storm Large's song 8 Miles Wide goes like this: "My vagina is eight miles wide/Absolutely everyone can come inside/If you're ever frightened, just run and hide/My vagina is eight miles wide." With the visiting Oregon Symphony, she'll sing Weill's The Seven Deadly Sins, but who knows what her banter will be. Also on the program is Phenomenon, a work by Thailand's leading young composer, Narong Prangcharoen, Schubert's "Unfinished" Symphony, and Ravel's La Valse. Uruguayan-born Oregon Symphony music director Carlos Kalmar conducts. JEN GRAVES

Success!, Benedict Awesome, Steven Cole Smith, the Damage Done

(Kraken Bar & Lounge) I don't want to make an example out of Success!, but damn it, dudes, DO NOT require a "like" on Facebook just to listen to the tunes that you've posted. I don't click "like," I say "FUCK THAT!" and go listen to something else that doesn't require me to approve of it before hearing it. Okay? Okay. End rant. Despite their internet 101 fail, though, Success! are still worth checking out—their heartfelt pop-punk sound isn't new, but it's still great, and it'll definitely appeal to fans of Less Than Jake, Face to Face, and other three-chord, gang-vocal favorites. Stop by the Kraken to get a good pogo workout session in. MEGAN SELING

Saturday 5/4

Debacle Fest: Sissy Spacek, MTNS, BLSPHM, WaMu, Stan Reed

(Highline) See preview.

Debacle Fest: Date Palms, John Wiese, Nate Young, Golden Retriever, Mind Over Mirrors, Marielle Jakobsons, Gabriel Saloman, Morae, Biosexual

(FRED Wildlife Refuge) See preview.

Land of Pines, Peeping Tomboys, Special Explosion

(Vera) See Underage.

Quantic, Blockhead, B. Durazzo, J Battle, DJ Chilly, Young Benoit

(Nectar) Blockhead's most significant and celebrated contribution to hiphop is found in the beats he produced for Aesop Rock in the late '90s and the early '00s. One can even argue that he and the founder of Definitive Jux, El-P, laid down the foundation for NYC's dark, post-illbient underground sound—Blockhead with his production work on Aesop Rock's Float (2000) and El-P with his production work on Cannibal Ox's The Cold Vein (2001). In 2004, Blockhead, who is often too musical to be of any use to a rapper, joined the triphop institution Ninja Tune, and he has been with the label ever since. My favorite Blockhead moment? The opening of "Commencement at the Obedience Academy"—Blade Runner and underground hiphop are a match made in heaven. CHARLES MUDEDE

Beck's Song Reader: Robin Holcomb, Wayne Horvitz

(Royal Room) Beck's 2012 album, Song Reader—a collection of songs published only as sheet music—is brought to life by a cavalcade of Seattle musicians, who'll each perform a song with the backing of the all-star Royal Room house band. Among those scheduled to perform: Robin Holcomb, Wayne Horvitz, Julia Massey, Maria Mannisto, and Andy Coe, plus members of the Jesus Rehab, the Walkabouts, the Glass Notes, and the Dead Kenny Gs. DAVID SCHMADER

Funhouse Benefit: The Cripples, Primate 5, Fabulous Downey Brothers, SexDrug, DJ Brian Foss

(Comet) It's been seven months since Seattle's beloved, clown-headed rock spot the Funhouse was emptied out to make way for condo trash, and this show is a benefit for a documentary that hopes to stitch together the stories of Seattle's most successful punk venue. Playing for the first time in a while (possibly years?), the Cripples have been, uh, hobbling around Seattle since 1994, and you should not miss their chaos! I'm extremely attracted to keyboards/synth in punk music—it tickles my ears and makes my teeth want to shimmy out of my mouth—and the Cripples bring to mind some kind of Devo/Screamers/noisy weirdness that's just the right mix of grating and catchy. EMILY NOKES

The Lonely Forest, Now, Now, BellaMaine

(Crocodile) The Lonely Forest spent the winter writing and recording their new record, so for their first Northwest show in a long time, the band will be armed with an onslaught of fresh material. I asked singer John Van Deusen for a hint, and he replied: "It's kind of hard to explain. The new record is called Adding Up the Wasted Hours, and I think the title sums up the overall vibe of the record. We're still a power-pop band, and the music still revolves heavily around the strength of the songs and their melodies. I do think, out of context from the rest of the record, individual songs feel a little naked. Almost as if they need their siblings around to make complete sense." I cannot fucking wait. Opening the show is Trans- labelmates Now, Now. Their new album, Threads, recalls both the Jealous Sound and Tegan and Sara—celestial, soft vocals and shimmering guitar riffs leading to choruses that sound like exploding stars. It's totally gorgeous. MEGAN SELING

METZ, No Joy, Eighteen Individual Eyes

(Neumos) In this oddly booked bill, local angular dream-rockers Eighteen Individual Eyes are followed by Montreal's No Joy, who trade in tempered, pop-leaning shoegaze that sneaks its way into your basal ganglia and becomes part of your basic motor functions. Go ahead, enjoy it. Just know that you'll be flung into full fervor as soon as headliners METZ power up. Their brawny thrash-punk—or is it post-punk? (Who gives a shit?)—pummels with precision. Think Sub Pop labelmates Pissed Jeans with maybe some Lipstick Game–era Rye Coalition smattered around—only with an exactness those bands don't tend to enact. The band shares a practice space with like-minded aural ruffians Fucked Up, so blockade your earholes appropriately. GRANT BRISSEY

RL Grime, Tony Goods

(Chop Suey) RL Grime is the "future-bass"/"trap"-producing alias of 22-year-old LA resident Henry Steinway—previously best known for his electro/house production as Clockwork. He's one of the pioneers of the "EDM" (ugh) co-opted version of the immensely popular Southern rap-production sound marked by pitched 808 bass thumps, aggressive snare rolls/fills, and skittering, ratcheting hi-hats. Along with Wedidit collective partner Salva, RL Grime is responsible for one of the most popular "trap remixes" ever—that ubiquitous club version of Kanye West's "Mercy." While this all might sound unappealing to anyone too old to read R. L. Stine's Goosebumps series, there should be enough '90s kids and #yolo types to pack Chop Suey for one of this genre's biggest names. MIKE RAMOS

The Cave Singers, Bleeding Rainbow

(Showbox at the Market) Philadelphia's Bleeding Rainbow have a few different hues to choose from: hard-edged psychedelic buzz, fast-ticking drone-y rock, and sugar-soaked, reverberating dream beams. Founded by duo (and married couple! Meow!) Rob Garcia and Sarah Everton, Bleeding Rainbow recently added a few players to the band and released an album earlier this year called Yeah Right, which sounds like all of their sounds pushed together to form one big, dark, swirling pop nebula of '90s-style alt-rock. Also playing this evening are Seattle's finest bearded folksters, the Cave Singers. EMILY NOKES

Sunday 5/5

Debacle Fest: Hieroglyphic Being, Moon Pool & Dead Band, Strategy, GOODWIN, Prostitutes, Black Hat, TJ Max, Patternmaster

(Lo-Fi) See preview.

Stacian, Samantha Glass, Ortrotasce, DJ Troy

(Electric Tea Garden) See Data Breaker.

Q Dot, the Good Sin, L.A.C.O.S.A, Jay Morrison

(Barboza) See My Philosophy.

VietNam, Gap Dream, Western Hymn

(Chop Suey) Michael Gerner leads the New York six-piece VietNam, who sound like they've been putting in long hours preparing to open for Nick Cave & the Bad Seeds. Which means a lot of turmoil-laced blues-rock and spectral ballads full of resignation to temper the tempestuousness. Gerner's no Cave on the mic, though, and his quasi-nerdy tone undercuts the last-days gravity for which he's striving. DAVE SEGAL

Monday 5/6

Jad Fair of Half Japanese, Kimya Dawson, Your Heart Breaks, iji, Slashed Tires

(Vera Project) This is one hot all-ages show! If you don't know Half Japanese, they were charming mid-'70s experimental punk janglers/noisemakers that mostly consisted of brothers Jad and David Fair, who wrote love songs and monster songs and didn't care about such superfluous things as tuning guitars. Jad Fair has kept the eccentric torch burning, making cuckoo tunes that include a lot of free-form talk-lyrics ("popcorn mixed with romance/you've got pretty eyes/YEAH") and enthusiastically simple musicianship. Fair is playing with a top-notch selection of local DIY sound-makers that you won't want to miss: the bedroom pineapple dance-party pop of iji, the experimental avant-disco of Slashed Tires, the thoughtful, sweet story-core of Your Heart Breaks, and, of course, the ever-magical Kimya Dawson. EMILY NOKES See also Underage.

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Tuesday 5/7

Acid Mothers Temple, Master Musicians of Bukkake, Tjutjuna

(Chop Suey) Relentless Japanese road warriors Acid Mothers Temple continue to preach the psych-rock gospel in strange tongues. For 18 years, Kawabata Makoto and his free-spirited tripmasters have flooded brains with overblown, chaotic freak-outs and spacey, shockingly beautiful bliss-outs. An AMT show can leave you enlightened and bruised. We've already told you countless times about the genius ethno-pantheist-psychotropic splendor of Master Musicians of Bukkake, so on to Tjutjuna. The Denver quintet applies La Monte Young and Terry Riley's precepts of minimalist composition to outward-bound rock, and the results induce trance and boost serotonin levels. Check out "Mosquito Hawk" to get an idea of Tjutjuna's infernal, monomaniacal majesty. DAVE SEGAL

Secret Chiefs 3

(Sunset) Anything can happen at a Secret Chiefs 3 gig, at any time. If you thought Mr. Bungle were a hot, heaping handful of WTF?, you will really reel at Secret Chiefs 3's mutational brilliance. Metallic bombast can segue into tower-tumbling drum 'n' bass, which can morph into eye-bulging horror-film soundtracking à la Goblin and Morricone (Gore-icone?), which can shift into calculus-level prog-rock or a skewed, Arabian dance jam. Secret Chiefs 3's quicksilver stylistic promiscuity can give your ears whiplash and frazzle your synapses with unique panache. DAVE SEGAL