Midday Veil, Nudity, Datura Blues
(Sunset) Want to get psyched? The Sunset's where you wanna be tonight. Olympia's Nudity are long-form astral ramblers with a wise and deft predilection for that timeless motorik rhythm that you want to last for all time. Featuring members of Tight Bros from Way Back When and Growing, Nudity are krautrageously skilled at this sort of trance-out mode. Portland's Datura Blues purvey a ramshackle yet epic brand of folky psych rock that'll curl your flannel beard just right. Seattle's Midday Veil keep on ascending to higher levels of heightened-awareness psychedelia that's as beautiful and majestic as a satellite photo of Jupiter's moons. DAVE SEGAL
Serena-Maneesh, Depreciation Guild
(Triple Door) See preview.
The Seattle Rock Orchestra: A Tribute to David Bowie
(Moore) See Underage.
Master Musicians of Bukkake, Dylan Carlson, Bill Horist
(Kenyon Hall) See Stranger Suggests.
Blue Scholars, Common Market, Gordon Voidwell, Bambu,
DJ Phatrick, DV One
(Showbox at the Market) Seattle hiphop populists Blue Scholars only seem to perform here in their hometown a handful of times a year, so it's worth taking advantage of any opportunity to see them. The duo of MC Geologic and DJ Sabzi surf on top of the current wave of Seattle hiphop, and they make it look easy. Geo's rhymes balance Chuck D rhetorical fire (burn on you, Michelle Malkin) with an easygoing vibe that's distinctly West Coast (or Seattle in the summertime), and his lyrics sleeplessly give it up to the 206, or, on the recent OOF! EP, to Hawaii's 808. And Sabzi's productions are impeccable—beats heavy, samples dusty, hooks deep. Tonight's bill plays to the Scholars' more serious side with openers Common Market and others; tomorrow's brings the (deceptively intelligent) LOLs with Das Racist. ERIC GRANDY See also My Philosophy, and Stranger Suggests.
Pentagram, Radio Moscow, Emeralds, Nekro Morphosis, Lethe
(Studio 7) It took Pentagram nearly 15 years to release their debut album. The band has endured numerous lineup changes, several breakups, a few debilitating drug arrests, multiple short-lived record deals, and prolonged periods of inactivity. But these inopportune occurrences—stumbles that would cripple lesser bands—cannot hold back the godfathers of doom metal. If anything, these roadblocks have added to their mystique, and consequently, the power of their legacy. The early demos are highly collectible and even their most recent albums tend to mine material from old rehearsal-tape bootlegs. One gets the distinct sense that Pentagram will never die, though history dictates that the opportunity to witness this metal institution in the flesh could very well be a once-in-a-lifetime occurrence. BRIAN COOK
Blowfly, Girl Trouble, Lamborghiniz
(Comet) Man, how did Girl Trouble, total ace Tacoma garage rockers since 1984, become the meat in this filthy, dirty sandwich?! I mean, first you got the bottom bun, Seattle's Lamborghiniz crew—lo-fi electro-rap perverts and their smutty songs about cougars, paternity tests, and, erm, people "taking them drawahs off." Then topping it all, you got the original Dirty Old Man, 65-year-old Clarence Reid, aka Blowfly, and his classic trash-raps about booty buses, destructo cocks, and, um, "f-ing big fat hos." All I can say is, anyone with "virgin ears" better bring condoms, Girl Trouble included. KELLY O
Black Stax, Q-Dot, Brotha Brown, Lisa Dank
(Rendezvous) Those who have heard samples of Black Stax's debut album, Talking Buildings, know that it has the stuff to be one of the year's most important recordings. Black Stax are talented singer/actress Felicia Loud (she starred in Strawberry Theatre Workshop's Lady Day at Emerson's Bar & Grill and Intiman's Native Son) and the brainy cats from Silent Lambs Project (Silas Black and Jace ECAj). The trio's album, which is to be released early this summer, will contain 18 tracks produced by some new jacks and some veterans—Amp Fire, King Otto, Barfly, Castro, Proh Mic, Big Zo, and Vitamin D. With Black Stax, hiphop stays elemental, architectural, and classical. CHARLES MUDEDE See also My Philosophy, page 57.
White Jazz, Death Pussy, Vampirates, Evangelist
(Black Lodge) Leave it to a bunch of punk-ass metalheads from Bremerton to steal the name of my dream band. How did they know I've always wanted to start a band and call it "Death Pussy"?! I mean, I don't even know how to play a single instrument, and I certainly wouldn't be able to play death metal, with all its structural complexity, super-fast guitars, and blast-beat drumming... BUT IF I COULD—man, I'm telling you—Death Pussy was going to be MY BAND! Mine! I think these guys are coming to Seattle to play this metal-kinda-hardcore bill just to rub their victory in my face. Ha-ha, Kelly, we're Death Pussy, and you're not! Ha-ha-haaa! KELLY O
White Mice, Same Sex Dictator, Carrion Cathartid, Microscopic Suffering
(Josephine) Besides having one of the best band names in town, Seattle's Microscopic Suffering also plumb the sonic abyss with early-Swans-like stoicism. Theirs is a grim grind through the machine-shop floor, marked by motor-hum ambience and shackled prisoners' footsteps for beats. One of Microscopic Suffering's tracks is titled "All Is Ending," which perfectly encapsulates their attitude and compellingly entropic sound. White Mice hail from Providence, Rhode Island's revered noise-rock scene, and a few minutes of exposure to their latest album, Ganjahovadose, reveals why they rule so strongly there. White Mice's music displays a sheer brute force and claustrophobic density that dwarf even those of legendary volume dealers like Killdozer and Birthday Party. Doing this sort of apocalyptic noise-eruption shtick can come off as macho posturing and/or corny horror-flick pantomime. It takes a special breed of sonic misanthrope to achieve this end-of-the-world atmosphere without making listeners mock you off the stage. White Mice are among that special breed. Historic hysterics guaranteed. DAVE SEGAL
Scout Niblett, Holy Sons, Ghost to Falco
(Sunset) See preview.
Crocodile's 1 Year Anniversary: Mad Rad, Throw Me the Statue, the Globes
(Crocodile) The reimagined Crocodile turns one year old this month (its original 16-year run as the Crocodile Cafe ended suddenly in late 2007), and the club is celebrating tonight with a show that places it firmly in Seattle's present rather than its storied past (a past of which the former incarnation was very much a part). After a 2009 that saw the band jailed then exonerated, banned and then welcomed back to local clubs, Mad Rad have settled into the new year nearly drama-free (hi, Radjaw) but still packing plenty of hustle and still bringing the raucous, high-production-value party rap. Throw Me the Statue, meanwhile, are still the smartest, catchiest indie-pop band this city has going for it—if you don't have both their albums, you're sorely missing out. Finally, the Globes are a rising rock band that do the moody, brooding loud-quiet-loud thing with some panache. ERIC GRANDY
Blue Scholars, Macklemore & Ryan Lewis, Das Racist, the Physics, DV One
(Showbox at the Market) You already know the Blue Scholars are world-historical (marking hiphop's turn to global cosmopolitanism, both in demographics and in sound). Brooklyn's Das Racist mark another major turning point for hiphop: toward playful, theoretical inversion and deconstruction. In their stoned-mellow delivery, they eviscerate both dominant culture and subcultures with raps about Maya Angelou, Dinesh D'Souza, and fake patois: "KRS-One had a fake patois, Miss Cleo had a fake patois, even Jay-Z did a fake patois... What you know about Shaun Bridgmohan? What you know about Shaun Bridgmohan? First Jamaican in the Kentucky Derby, first Jamaican in the Kentucky Derby. Ya na gwan speak patois, Me gwan talk that fake patois, everyone I listen to fake patois, Snow from Toronto fake patois." Because of their video for "Combination Pizza Hut and Taco Bell," the world thought Das Racist were clowns. Turns out, they'd just begun messing with our minds. BRENDAN KILEY
Acid Mothers Temple, Over-Gain Optimal Death
(Sunset) Longtime Acid Mothers Temple leader Kawabata Makoto's tangled mass of graying black hair is an apt analogue to his group's music: a dense, many-tendriled phenomenon in which one can get lost. Over the last 13 years or so of absurdly prolific release schedules and frequent touring, AMT's approach has become somewhat predictable, but despite that, it's not lost much of its luster. These Japanese freaks can still stun you with chaotic noise jams or serenely folky ballads. L.A.'s Over-Gain Optimal Death traffic in that kind of ever-revvin', "we're gonna ride our hogs across America in 48 hours" rock that the MC5 and Steppenwolf blueprinted 40 years ago and Japanese outfits like Mainliner and High Rise accelerated to even crazier levels. Expect many whiplash casualties tonight. DAVE SEGAL
High Places, Bear in Heaven, Freelance Whales
(Crocodile) The new High Places record takes the duo's established—and wholly idiosyncratic—sound and stretches it into unanticipated territory. Every element that was muffled or submerged in effects-pedal dribble on their self-titled debut has been brought to the fore on High Places vs. Mankind. Mary Pearson's earth-mother meditations are now cooed, glossy pop hooks; Robert Barber's guitar remains sprightly, but is more acidic than aquatic. And while High Places vs. Mankind certainly rawks—in its own way—you have to recognize that the title doesn't belie a chest-pounding machismo. Rather, it's a dreamily paeanic appeal to their global audience: Let's all transcend together, dudes. They're a capable live act, and their set has the potential to legitimately validate their itinerant, perma-fried spiritualism. JASON BAXTER
Think About Life, U.S.F.
(Crocodile) Think of Think About Life as Montreal's U.S.E. Both groups want to take you so deeply into the land of happily-ever-after that you believe they have to be joking. But, no. Think About Life earnestly desire to uplift you through the power of hook-heavy disco and electro pop. They saturate your mind with gallons of joy juice, and you just may emerge from Think About Life's set as wide-eyed and sloshy-brained as they are. Or not. Seattle's U.S.F. sound little like U.S.E, despite the similarity of acronyms. Rather, U.S.F. (aka Universal Studios Florida, who consist of Stranger freelancer Jason Baxter and Kyle Hargus) exude a much more chilled-out yet beachy kind of buoyancy. Their sound coalesces at the hazy nexus where shoegaze rock, ambient, and indietronica (sorry) converge. U.S.F.'s Ocean Sunbirds CD-R is a mutedly sunny work that shows a facility for vaporous, dream-swoon tones and elation-bringing melodies. I can imagine the disc getting reissued on Animal Collective's Paw Tracks label one day. DAVE SEGAL
(Easy Street Records, Queen Anne) The last in-store I saw at the Queen Anne Easy Street was Jay Reatard. He was pretty wasted, and his crazy antics and sweaty long hair freaked out two little kids in the front row so much that they left. I love Easy Street shows 'cause I can't stop watching how the young ones react to the music. Black Breath play loud-as-fuck heavy metal, which, as VICE magazine recently described in a feature, touches on "black, death, thrash, hardcore, d-beat, and influenced by the likes of Bathory, Poison Idea, Celtic Frost, Sacrilege, Anti Cimex and Discharge." I hope I see those same two little kids—to see if they can hang this time. KELLY O
Tobacco, the Hood Internet, Dead Noise
(Chop Suey) Here's a weird pairing. Tobacco is the one-man electronics band of Black Moth Super Rainbow head Tom Fec, who here warps that band's heady, psychedelic pop sound to darker and more beat-heavy ends. The same crackling analog synths, space-making tape delays, and vaporous vocodered vocals are present, but Tobacco tethers and loops them to harder, digitally clipped hiphop beats, making for almost-instrumentals that are as lysergically blissful as they are eerily disorienting. The Hood Internet, on the other hand, are a pair of prolific Chicago-based DJ/producers who make mashups of hiphop and indie rock; their selections show fine if overly au courant taste, and their blends are on-beat if not always mind-blowing—don't expect anything like the adventurous curatorial depth and breadth and giddily hyperactive mixing of, say, 2 Many DJs. ERIC GRANDY
Panther Attack, Kerretta, the Luna Moth
(Sunset) As a rule, I'm not very into instrumental-rock outfits. I can appreciate their craftsmanship—it takes a lot of belief in your own skill as a musician to not hide behind a screaming, expletive-heavy vocalist—but without the added drama (or melodrama) of lyrics, my attention tends to wander. Panther Attack, then, are something remarkable: They're an instrumental group that doesn't leave you wondering whether the vocalist quit a minute or two before the band went onstage. The compelling spirit of their music comes in their ability to swap genres and tempos deftly ("Espionage a Trois" begins as a dirty go-go song that swings into metal, and "Unicron Cron" experiments with looped acoustics before seriously rocking the fuck out). Who needs vocals? PAUL CONSTANT
(Egyptian Theatre) Experimental electronic pop band Animal Collective and director Danny Perez recently staged a happening, a "kinetic, psychedelic environment" at NYC's Guggenheim Museum called Transverse Temporal Gyrus. There were masks and robes, glowing blobs and fans in face paint, and hours of music with no discernible songs. ODDSAC is Perez and the band's new "visual album" (aka totally trippy movie, bro!), and it's probably the closest thing you're going to get to that Gyrus this side of the Guggenheim. The film is 54 minutes of Brakhage-esque multiple exposures, abstract expressionism, and quick cuts (plus fire dancers and probably more robes and masks) set to new music by the band—but expect less Merriweather Post Pavilion sing-along and more early AC psyched-punch freak-out. ERIC GRANDY
Graves33, RA Scion, Jewels Hunter, XPerience, Audio Poet, Nathan Wolfe, DJ 100Proof
(Nectar) See My Philosophy.
John Mayer, Michael Franti & Spearhead
(KeyArena) Once upon a time, John Mayer was just your typical twentysomething white-guy blues guitarist cultivating an image of humble, down-to-earth dorkiness while casually banging Jennifer Aniston and Twittering his every witty musing. Then came 2010, when Mayer was overcome by what seemed like a particularly douchey strain of Tourette's, which drove him to brag about the celebrity babes he'd boned in a manner befitting a young Donald Trump and language befitting a dull pubescent. He also made some lunk-headed proclamations on race involving, God help him, "ironic" N-bombs. Thus did a contender for America's male sweetheart become a disturbing and pitiable freak show, at which you may gawk tonight at KeyArena. His psyche is a wonderland. DAVID SCHMADER
Washed Out, Small Black, Pictureplane
(Vera) When Washed Out's breakthrough track "Feel It All Around" (improbably voted Pitchfork's 10th best song of 2009) was discovered to be built almost entirely out of a chopped and screwed sample of obscure '80s Italo pop singer Gary Low's "I Want You," it caused a very minor tempest in chillwave's rapidly-approaching-room-temperature teapot. That the loosely defined genre hazily recollected and resurrected the sounds of the soft-rocking '80s was no news; that some of the craftiest use of samples was happening in indie rock rather than hiphop might've been. Over that track's popping synth bass, steady drum-machine beat, and stereo-panned twinkling, Washed Out's Ernest Greene sings smeared, slushy nothings, and the result really is satisfyingly dreamy. Other tracks, such as the overdone vocal "ducking" of "You'll See It," bespeak the dangers of being more GarageBand than garage band. ERIC GRANDY
Deakin, Jabon, Peppermint Majesty
(Neumos) Deakin (aka Animal Collective's Deacon, aka Josh Dibb) drops into town on the back of AnCo and Danny Perez's ODDSAC "visual album" show that's happening March 30 (see Tuesday). Tonight, Deakin reportedly will perform a grip of Animal Collective material and some of his solo creations. If YouTube footage is anything to go by, this gig should be full of spectral dubgaze songs featuring Deakin's distant, boyish croon, mantric loops, and shimmering guitar embroidery. Jabon (aka Scott Colburn, who engineered AnCo's Feels and Strawberry Jam in his local Gravelvoice studio) is one of the few people on the planet who can legitimately call himself "audio wizard." Colburn has at least 23 sonic personas he can roll out at you (go to www.gravelvoice.com/jabon to hear for yourself), and all of them can trip you the fuck out. DAVE SEGAL
Trespassers William, Sneaky Thieves, Larkspur
(Tractor) There's a wide-awake somnolence to Anna-Lynne Williams of the Seattle-based Trespassers William. She lays her guitar across her lap as she plays, and when she sings, gently hovering vocals emit and activate her as if she's having a lucid dream. To the audience, she may appear as if she's there performing, but really, when she sings, her crown chakra is sending her into a dream scene of a frozen, quiet lake where she designs the shape of every snowflake that falls on the earth. Trespassers William's songs house delayed, experimental layers that pick you up into their drift. Williams and bandmate Matt Brown have been cultivating their folky atmospherics for over 10 years. Their latest EP on Gizeh Records, The Natural Order of Things, is a fine place to start exploring their work. TRENT MOORMAN