Erykah Badu and the Roots
(Marymoor Park) See My Philosophy, page 56.
The Roots Listening Party with ?uestlove, hosted by Black Thought
(Neumo's) See My Philosophy, page 56.
Little Pieces, Hazelwood Motel, Perhapst
(Re-bar) See Album Reviews, page 53.
TacocaT, Purple Rhinestone Eagle, Bird Language
(Fusion Cafe) You think TacocaT are a joke, huh? Three hot girls and a dude who suck at their instruments and just want to party? Oooooh, cool! A palindrome. Well, a fat LOL goes out to you and your overactive "bullshit detector." Why deny "Leotard," a funny and sweet song about wearing a leotard under your clothes to ensure no regrettably premature sex pops off? Why hate "Dry Land Is a Myth," the only—and therefore best—ode to the movie Waterworld yet written? By her audible sneer, you can tell singer Emily's favorite part of covering Huggy Bear's "Her Jazz" is delivering the bad news that you should "face it: You're old and out of touch." Pretty tough to take from three hot girls and a dude who suck at their instruments and just want to party, right? But take it, you will. Right up the ass. MARK DONUTS
The Submarines, Bad Dream Good Breakfast, the Color Bars
(Chop Suey) The Submarines are the L.A.-based duo of John Dragonetti and Blake Hazard. They used to date. They broke up. They separately wrote a bunch of songs about breaking up and missing each other, which they still recorded together at Dragonetti's home. So of course they got back together and got married. The most obvious analogue here is also the most apt, as the Submarines' sickly sweet, love-stoned pop songs recall nothing so much as the less manic moments of Mates of State, although Hazard occasionally sounds like a less subtle Mirah. Their latest, Honeysuckle Weeks—which ranges from the odd dub lope of "1940" to the manicured hand-wringing of "You and Me and the Bourgeoisie"—is as glossy and broadcast-ready as you'd expect from a band whose work has appeared on Weeds, Grey's Anatomy, and Nip/Tuck. ERIC GRANDY
(Comet) In the late 1990s, Seattle was rife with music to sway to drunkenly, and no band exemplified the local shoegazer aesthetic better than Voyager One. Dayna Loeffler, V1's old bassist, has switched to guitar in Half Light, the band she now fronts. Half Light's debut CD, aptly titled Sleep More, Take More Drugs, Do Whatever We Want, is being released tonight, and it's exactly what you'd expect: smooth, dreamy spacerock that owes influences to Pink Floyd, Lush, My Bloody Valentine, and, of course, Voyager One. The Purrs, another example of finely crafted local postpunk, round out a strong bill for fans of psychedelic rock. MATT GARMAN
Billy Bragg, C.R. Avery
(Moore) The election is still five months away, and you're already worn down. What to do? You could be cryogenically suspended until November, but seeing Billy Bragg offers a much better way to recharge your batteries and forge on. His classic "Waiting for the Great Leap Forward" grows more stirring with every lyrical twist added to reflect time, place, and state of mind. And for all his fiery politics, Bragg's live sets are tempered with humor, down-to-earth romance, and savvy observations. As befits a man of his wit and charisma, the Bard of Barking is not bashful in his pulpit, but unlike so many folk artists, he rarely stoops to preach. KURT B. REIGHLEY
Mars Accelerator, The Preons, Casey Alexander
(Skylark) The Preons play warm, mellow indie rock laced with lush layers of harmonica, trumpet, and keyboards. They're like a calm, less literary Decemberists. The band's members have a deep history in local music—bassist John Hendow played in local reggae band Jumbalassy before joining the Preons, and guitarist Josh Cowart once leant his talents to Hourglass Lake. The music benefits from their diverse pasts—subtle hints of jazz and reggae make their way into tracks on their latest record, Starshine on the Devilwoods. But the band say it's the life experiences—everything from "rehab, weddings, weddings canceled, and death"—that happened while writing and record that make it so strong in the end, proving that sometimes adversity is the best inspiration. MEGAN SELING
Good Medicine, Nam, the Physics, Bambu
(Vera Project) See Stranger Suggests, page 29.
Crystal Castles, dd/mm/yyyy, David Wolf, Reflex
(Chop Suey) See Album Reviews, page 53.
Venetian Snares, Otto Von Schirach, Cyrusrex, DJ Daniel Myer
(El Corazón, late) Survive an invasive ear-canal enema from brown-note toting Otto Von Schirach or speed-metal synth editor Venetian Snares—virtuosos of laptop synapse assault and battery—and you'll be left damaged well beyond the ear ringing. Watch scissors snip jagged gashes, and find yourself yelling, "Stop laughing!" Slowly pass a car wadded and splayed against a median and plead with the blood pounding in your head to stop rasping how it looks like a good, hard fuck. These mecho-perverts rim granular breakcore synthesis, shart IDM breach birth, and speaker-fist their audience. Cyrusrex and DJ Daniel Myer join in on this stark symphony seemingly played on barbed aluminum vibrators. TONY WARE
Panic at the Disco, Motion City Soundtrack
(Paramount) Panic at the Disco want to be all growed up—gone is the eyeliner and that extraneous exclamation mark in their name. For their new album, Pretty. Odd. (I guess they can't ditch the annoying punctuation completely), the band have abandoned their old circus act/freak show and adopted a trippy, hippie aesthetic that blends in with today's trend of indie-rock beards. Some may see signs of "maturity" in their new image, but the band are just as immature as before—the only thing that's really grown is the hair. "It's like Christians who want to be like Jesus," said one band member in a recent NPR interview. "We're just trying to follow in someone's footsteps. Might as well be the Beatles." Somehow, I bet their actual aesthetic epiphany came when they saw Kay Kay and His Weathered Underground on Carson Daly, but whatever. MEGAN SELING
Skylark Second Anniversary Party:Brent Amaker and the Rodeo, Mass Sugar, the Riffbrokers
(Skylark) If you're going to throw a party, you couldn't ask for better entertainment than Brent Amaker and the Rodeo. With tongues firmly in cheek and 10-gallon hats proudly on their heads, these whiskey-swilling, black-clad outlaws combine style, substance and (most importantly) sarcasm on crowd-pleasing tunes like "Sissy New Age Cowboy" and "I'm the Man Who Writes the Country Hits." While they're unlikely to bust out any of their disturbingly great Hillbilly Electro Pop remixes for the occasion, you can bet your life they'll make sure the audience is appropriately rocked, rolled, and ripped as the Skylark Cafe celebrates its second anniversary. BARBARA MITCHELL
Truckasauras, the Dead Science, Past Lives, DJ Introcut
(Nectar) See preview, page 47.
Return to Forever
(Paramount) See The Score, page 61.
Moby, Colby B, Nordic Soul, Bret Law
(Neumo's) Lord, it's easy to hate on Moby, techno's premier mainstream-crossovering, didactic essay-writing, tea-hawking, Christlike-posing, Herman Melville–descended, Natalie Portman-dating, vegan, Christian nerd. See how easy that was? But, damning litanies and late-career duds aside, Moby is actually kind of awesome, and you know it. "Go," was the jam; his cover of "That's When I Reach for My Revolver" was probably the first you ever heard of Mission of Burma; and the soul-jacking Play briefly made TV commercials bearable listening around the turn of the millennium. His new album, Last Night, a concept album meant to condense 25 years of dance music and emulate the arc of a perfect night out, doesn't quite manage either the giddy, naive peaks of his early singles or the ubiquity-bound background pleasures of Play, but it's not without at least one great ecstatic moment in the classic house homage "Everyday It's 1989." ERIC GRANDY
Russian Circles, Daughters, Young Widows
(Neumo's) See Stranger Suggests, page 29.
The Ting Tings, Anni Rossi
(Chop Suey) The Ting Tings have everything working against them: a major label deal preceded by little to no underground buzz; the ubiquitous boy-girl-duo lineup; and, worst of all, a moniker that sounds like a family of pandas in captivity. So why is their album so damn catchy? The title, We Started Nothing, says it all. These jams simply amalgamate indie punk, electro-pop, hiphop, and other popular flavors, yet their hooks are undeniable. Tenacious, even. "That's Not My Name" is the best drill-team jam since Toni Basil's "Mickey," while "Shut Up and Let Me Go" stomps like Blondie marching all the way from Studio 54 to the Mudd Club. If the Kills are trucker speed, the Ting Tings are Flintstones Chewable Vitamins—safer and sweeter, and much more colorful. KURT B. REIGHLEY
Annuals, Times New Viking, Psychedelic Horseshit, Fabulous Diamonds
(Neumo's) Times New Viking's third record and first for big-time indie Matador, Rip It Off, blessedly still sounds like it was recorded for about 25 cents in the bike-cluttered basement of some flop house. Through the staticky midrange and tape hiss, though, emerge some insanely energetic and catchy indie-pop-rock jams. The band's sheer exuberance (and boy/girl vocals) recall the early heights of Architecture in Helsinki, but without that band's well-charted recording prowess, or the posi-core smiles of Soophie Nun Squad, only without their alterna-drill-team goofiness. Matador has seen its share of stellar songs given deliberately rough recording treatment before, but Times New Viking take the old slanted enchantment a step shittier in the best possible way. It can only sound more awesome live. ERIC GRANDY
The Black Angels, the Warlocks
(Neumo's) See Album Reviews, page 53.
Dosh, Anathallo, Wesafari
(Nectar) See Stranger Suggests, page 29.