ANTIBALAS, DJ DAREK MAZZONE
(Neumo's) See preview, page 74.
GLASS CANDY, STRONG KILLINGS, I'M A GUN, LOVE MACHINE
(Comet) See Stranger Suggests, page 61.
ROCKY VOTOLATO, NIGHT CANOPY
(Triple Door) Remember last week when I wrote about Rocky Votolato's all-ages show over at the Old Fire House? I swooned over his just-released album, The Brag and Cuss (Barsuk), saying things like, "Votolato has once again created a collection of songs derived from some of the most common and familiar material (loss, longing, alcohol), while still managing to wrap those moments and ideas in little musical packages that are stunning and captivating" and "His lyrics paint vivid pictures of every moment, while the music (even more country-tinged than his previous material) stands in as the perfect soundtrack to his stories." So why am I mentioning it again? Since that show was canceled, now's your chance to see Mr. Votolato right here on your side of the 520, at the gorgeous and wonderful-sounding Triple Door. And be prompt, Amy Blashke's Night Canopy ain't something you're gonna wanna pass over either. MEGAN SELING
SHEARWATER, JAMIE STEWART, MINUS STORY
(Crocodile) While there is an overflowing propensity to label any dramatic modern pop music as "Bowie-esque," few artists really employ the same sort of weird peak-and-valley vocal drama as ol' Stardust; his deeply layered interplay of blasé and belting-to-the-rafters is too often reduced to thin caricature by modern disciples. Shearwater frontman Jonathan Meiburg, whose band has just moved to indie massive Matador for the remodel and rerelease of their beautiful Palo Santo album, is one of few modern singers who truly traverses these theatrically choppy waters with aplomb. Jamie Stewart of Xiu Xiu, also a singer of great refinement, appears here in a solo format, trading his band's usual burning pony show live energy for a microscope-close, needles-and-pins presentation. SAM MICKENS
SCHOOLYARD HEROES, FORGIVE DURDEN, THE ASSAILANT, THEME FOR MURDER
(El Corazón) I'm being serious here: The Assailant on the same bill as Schoolyard Heroes? Is that safe? Schoolyard are heavy, for sure, but the Assailant... that shit's brutal! I worry that they'll scare the gaggle of 15-year-old Schoolyard fans in ripped fishnets and homemade party dresses. While Schoolyard still have this tinge of approachability in their catchy monstercore, the Assailant aren't sugarcoating—the crushing bass and drums, the piercing guitar, the deafening vocals... I mean, if the girls in the front row ('cause there are always girls in the front row) are tough enough to endure Schoolyard's nasty metal undertones, I bet they can handle the vicious thrashing the Assailant will stake through their hearts. I'm not saying girls are weak, I'm just saying that this show should maybe come with a warning label, so they can put in their earplugs and double-knot their high-top Chucks and prepare to be tossed around like rag dolls if they stay in the pit. MEGAN SELING
PRINCESS SUPERSTAR, GENE LEE, DJ VENUS
(Club Heaven) It doesn't really matter if Princess Superstar is behind the mic or a set of turntables—she's going to get a party started either way. Her mashups share the same musical sensibilities as Girl Talk, mixing rap and Top 40 with indie and classic-rock favorites, like Black Sabbath vs. Jay-Z and the Rapture vs. Beastie Boys, except she does it live with records instead of on a computer. She's got the whole performer package: DJ prowess, fast and literate flows, a hilariously dirty sense of humor (imagine if Sarah Silverman could rap), and gorgeous looks. It's enough to make any boy fall in love—as if he would ever have a chance scoring with royalty. JEFF KIRBY
RICHMOND FONTAINE, LAURA GIBSON, BURNING RIVERS
(Tractor) There's enough misery and whiskey in a single Richmond Fontaine album to send you careering down Highway 99 at high speeds on a rainy night. The band seem to be obsessed with failure, lost love, addiction, and demise. It's actually kind of exhilarating to go down with them, swirling in this whirlpool of steel guitar, liquor, and despair as singer Willy Vlautin tells weary, elliptical stories that move from heartbreak to despondency. Fontaine's newest album, Thirteen Cities, continues their travels through the outskirts of forgotten towns, populated by the dispossessed and lost. For a true cocktail of wretchedness, buy the album, go to the show, and then curl up in bed with Vlautin's novel, The Motel Life. You may not make it through the night. CHRIS McCANN
MARNIE STERN, BLITZEN TRAPPER, TRIUMPH OF LETHARGY SKINNED ALIVE TO DEATH
(Chop Suey) See preview, page 73.
THE NEW YEAR, DAVE BAZAN
(Crocodile) When brothers Matt and Bubba Kadane decided to leave Bedhead in 1998, thus breaking up the band, the depressed and listless of the world heaved a familiar sigh: Who would buoy their spirits with three-guitar melodies that swelled toward heaven like gossamer bubbles threatening to burst? The Kadanes gave us the answer in 2001 with the release of the New Year's first album, full of songs that sounded an awful lot like those of their former band. I've always thought that the New Year's music is less desolately thrilling than that of Bedhead, but listening to the crest and crash of their anthems for the glum brings a smile to my face on even the darkest of days. CHRIS McCANN
SAGE FRANCIS, BUCK 65, ALIAS, BUDDY WAKEFIELD
(Showbox) A rapper of undeniable talent and discipline (he's two-time MC champ at Scribble Jam, indie hiphop's most monumental platform), Sage Francis has built a career on personal polemic married to unadorned lyrical grind. His subversive mindspray found fire on his seminal 9/11 debunking anthem "Makeshift Patriot" and his sole Anticon release, 2002's sonically murky and dread-ridden Personal Journals. While Francis's new album, Human the Death Dance (his second release on major Epitaph), still boasts a healthy balance of his journalistic itchy trigger finger and his subtly playful vocal style, it is also more conceptually flattened then some of his past work, and could be read as suggestive of a somewhat more mainstreamed artistic heading. (The record does include two songs from a forthcoming football drama's soundtrack.) SAM MICKENS
GIRL IN A COMA, COULTER, PHANIE
(Sunset) This write-up about Girl in a Coma will contain absolutely zero puns about comas. I will also not mention the Smiths' reference any more than I did just now. You're welcome for both things. Now, down to business. (1) If you haven't caught on yet, "coma" is the new "horse" is the new "bear" is the new "whatever hip word is being used by every new band to hit the scene." (Case in point: The Comas are playing the Croc Monday. See? It's all over.) But let's stay on track. (2) Girl in a Coma is a bad, bad, bad name for a not-bad band. Really. The debut CD, Both Before I'm Gone, isn't flawless, but it is catchy Joan Jett—inspired peppy punk, which makes sense as the female trio is signed to Jett's label, Blackheart Records. Plus, singer Nina Diaz has this whole '80s punk-rock sex-kitten crooning thing going on, which is pretty hot. Bummer about the name, though. MEGAN SELING
LESLIE & THE LY'S, DAN DEACON, CHARMING SNAKES, LD & HER PRETTY PRETTIES, CHARTREUSE & SODA, MS LED, H IS FOR HELLGATE, STINKMITT, MCs URSULA ANDROID AND JACKIE HELL
(Wildrose) Expect garish costume changes, willfully tacky performance art, booty-thumping electro, punk rock, and raunchy hiphop from the Wildrose's stacked Saturday Pride lineup. Insanely popular (or just insane) internet video star Leslie & the Ly's will pit her bedazzling sweater raps against Baltimorean Dan Deacon's demented hypercolor electro and batshit Spider-Man banter. In some wonderful bizarro world, both of these characters would have their own TV shows—Leslie as a late-night variety-show host, Deacon as an after-school edutainer à la Mr. Wizard (R.I.P.). Peaches collaborators Stinkmitt—the Vancouver, BC, duo of Betti Forde and Jenni Craige—drop a decidedly dirtier sort of science, serving up violently ill rhymes about periods looking like crime scenes and song after song about getting it on. Lots of local talent round out the bill, and femmes fatales Ursula Android and Jackie Hell host. ERIC GRANDY
BEND-IT FESTIVAL: TENDER FOREVER, YOUR HEART BREAKS, CHRIS RIFFLE, LUCY BLAND
(Vera Project) See Underage, page 94.
FEIST, GRIZZLY BEAR
(Moore) Grizzly Bear shouldn't have been a surprise highlight of the recent Sasquatch! Festival—their bizarre epic Yellow House should have been more than enough advance notice that the band were not to be missed. But, echoing through the open air at the Gorge, their faint, frozen R&B and dreamy pop still came as a shock. For one thing, their live sound was so much more powerful than expected—although repeat listens to Yellow House reveal some pretty ominous swells on songs like "Lullabye" and "On a Neck, on a Spit"—they were the first band of the day to really fill that vast outdoor space and make it their own. In the relatively intimate Moore Theatre, they'll no doubt be even more impressive, if less of a revelation this time around. Broken Social Scene chanteuse Feist headlines. ERIC GRANDY
THE VEILS, THE COMAS
(Crocodile) If you're hungry for the apocalyptic brilliance and beauty of Nick Cave but can't wait for the prince of doom to come around again, get yourself down to the Veils show tonight. Fronted by the son of XTC's Barry Andrews, this dark and lovely outfit is the perfect salve for the battered hearts who gravitate toward the fantastic and romantic—those who appreciate a stark and gorgeous ballad as much as a feral freak-out. Like Cave and Rufus Wainwright, Finn Andrews is a top-notch drama queen who's equally adept at both formats and as likely to tug at your heart and soul with his artful croon as his desperate howl. If fate prevents you from attending the show, by all means pick up the band's latest album, Nux Vomica, which is just now getting a U.S. release. BARBARA MITCHELL
TORTOISE, GEORGIA ANNE MULDROW, DUDLEY PERKINS
(Neumo's) See preview, page 74.
FALL OUT BOY, (+44), THE ACADEMY IS..., PAUL WALL, COBRA STARSHIP
(Tacoma Dome) All together now: If you don't have anything nice to say, don't say anything at all. Once more, this time with heart: If you don't have anything nice to say, don't say anything at all! Now think of happy things... cotton candy, finding $20 on the street, baby pandas, Jake Gyllenhaal with his shirt off.... MEGAN SELING