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Less famous but similarly chart-topping Cyrus family member and pop crafter Noah will hit Seattle on her Good Cry Tour, which is fortunate because she's fresh off her break-up with rapper Lil Xan.
Brooklyn-based producer Yaeji ignites the dance floor with her unique fusions of house and bouncing hiphop that are glossed with soft vocals that switch between Korean and English. Her tracks survey the shadows of the club and the confessional thoughts that surface in your head as you move through this dynamic space. Yaeji found her footing in the underground electronic scene while studying at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh, leading her to return to Brooklyn where she began recording original tracks that will guide you into chanting “Make it rain, girl, make it rain” to her breakout track “Raingurl.” ABBIE GOBELI
Seu Jorge Presents: The Life Aquatic, A Tribute to David Bowie
I don’t consider myself a Wes Anderson devotee in any way, but I do think that pulling Brazilian artist Seu Jorge for the soundtrack of The Life Aquatic was nothing short of genius. Already an established musician and actor in his home country, Jorge added a layer of retro curiosity and easy joy to well-known Bowie tracks without tacking on the schmaltz that typically goes along with attempting to cover the classics of such a legendary discography. I saw Seu Jorge perform this set, complete with a psychedelic visual tribute to Bowie, in Portland two years ago, and I can say with zero hesitation that it ranks as one of my favorite concerts. KIM SELLING
4AD Welcomes Tune-Yards + U.S. Girls
Few record labels have cultivated more of a distinctive aesthetic than Britain’s 4AD in the 1980s, when 23 Envelope (Vaughan Oliver and Nigel Grierson) was designing intriguingly inscrutable album covers for otherworldly ensembles like Cocteau Twins and Dead Can Dance. While many of their peers have faded away, 4AD has persevered by signing more earthbound, intellectually rigorous—yet dance-floor-friendly—collectives like Oakland’s Merrill Garbus-led Tune-Yards and Toronto’s Meg Remy-led U.S. Girls. Both have enjoyed an amazing year, from U.S. Girls’ rapturously received In a Poem Unlimited to Tune-Yards’ multilayered score for Boots Riley’s acclaimed absurdist comedy Sorry to Bother You. KATHY FENNESSY
Since the early 2000s, Arctic Monkeys have cut their teeth twining together wit and gritty rock that skyrocketed them to stadium-sized success around the globe. Following the successful release of their fifth album, AM, frontman Alex Turner suffered a bout of writer’s block, but then combated it with his childhood love of science fiction. Turner slowed down the tempo astronomically in favor of an accentuated psychedelic organ and debonair vocal delivery that builds the futuristic, off-kilter world of their latest effort, Tranquility Base Hotel & Casino. The change of pace has not fazed loyal followers, as evidenced by the band selling out WaMu Theater. ABBIE GOBELI
Christine and the Queens
Tiny French firecracker Christine will bring her Queens on the road for a night of clashing Euro dance-pop.
Earshot Jazz Festival
This year at the Earshot Jazz Festival, there is an emphasis on youth and women. Not saying that the festival has neglected young and female players. It has not. And the 2018 edition of Earshot seems to feature less huge names and more names you may not have heard of and need to discover. For example, there is harpist Brandee Younger, who’s worked closely with Ravi Coltrane and is certainly influenced by the musicians John Coltrane worked with in the last period of his musical career (1965–1967). Younger plays the kind of music that clears your brain and soul. Then there is Jane Bunnett and Maqueque. Bunnett is a pretty well-known Canadian saxophonist, but Maqueque, a superb band of Cuban women, is not. And there is also Helen Sung, a pianist who plays with a mesmerizing (and at times mind-boggling) mix of density and clarity. There’s the Seattle Women’s Jazz Orchestra, Samantha Boshnack, Sarah Manning, Madison McFerrin, and SassyBlack (formerly of THEESatisfaction). And there is much, much more. CHARLES MUDEDE
Top shows this week: Jazzmeia Horn (Tues); Brandee Younger and Gretchen Yanover (Fri); Madison McFerrin and SassyBlack (Sat); Seattle Women’s Jazz Orchestra with Sheryl Bailey (Sat); Thiefs with Guillermo E. Brown (Sun)
Northwest Symphony Orchestra: National Parks
Washington's National Park Fund turns 25 this year! The organization helps wrangle private dollars to keep public lands looking good. To celebrate the fine work they do, bliss out to a slideshow of pristine Cascadian wilderness while soaking up Dvořák’s triumphant New World Symphony. There's an oboe part a couple minutes into the second movement that will take you right back to the shire. RICH SMITH
Alright, this one's for the capital-n Nerds of the music world. DJs Dad (Eli Anderson), Average Rooms (Norm Chambers), and Veins (The Stranger's own Dave Segal) have dug real deep into the wild world of library music (a.k.a. production music) to present for y'all an evening of the "scariest, funkiest, catchiest, and craziest tracks you’ve never heard before... until now." Aubrey Nehring will be providing the surrealistic visuals to cap it all off.
Emotive dance music artist SG Lewis will perform a "three-part ode to club music:" Dusk, Dark, and Dawn.
Ian Sweet, Young Jesus
Ian Sweet is actually three people; singer Jillian Medford, called “Ian” as a child because of her tomboy stance, started making demos by plugging her guitar straight into her laptop back at Boston’s Berklee College of Music. She added drummer Tim Cheney and bassist Damien Scalise, but these plangent rock songs still reflect a loner’s soul: worried about love, worried about giving too much love, worried that the object of that love might not return it, might morph into something unrecognizable, might morph into a nullity, or even an all-destroying black hole. The new album is Crush Crusher, and it finds the worrier going boldly into the world. ANDREW HAMLIN
Billie Eilish, Childish Major, Finneas
Precocious singer Billie Eilish has rocketed upward since her debut single “Ocean Eyes” dropped in 2015, now selling out tour stops thanks to audiences fiending for her serpentine electro-pop that pulls from heavy hiphop, grunge, and glam inspiration sources.
PSA, Mary Keey, Hezza Fezza, Occlusions
PSA, or Pop Star Archie, is completely literal. Archie, the brains behind the operation, is on her way to becoming the pop star for which Seattle should be known. Using bombastic dance music and swirling triphop production styles to guide the energy, PSA sways through her own tracks like a dolphin on a wave, handling pop with the complexity of a practiced soul artist. KIM SELLING
The Turn of the Screw
In 1954, English composer Benjamin Britten (1913–1976) premiered his opera based on Henry James's ghost story The Turn of the Screw. Its music is darkly gorgeous, jolting, manic at times, and often outright scary. In key sequences involving the children in the story, the atonal sounds float like a ghost in a room of mirrors. Anyone familiar with the Portishead track “Cowboys” will already have a good sense of how this echo-stark opera sounds. Because the opera is as much about ghosts as sexual abuse of women and children, it provides new and important meanings for our #MeToo moment. CHARLES MUDEDE
No performance on Thursday
If you love music videos, look no further than this biannual showcase of Pacific Northwest-made audiovisuals made within the last year—including ones by Ritual Veil, Star Club, and American Nudism—curated by Bobby McHugh and Sharlese Metcalf.
Zen Mother, Tengu Yawn, Morher
When so many local bands of twentysomethings are content to reference the rock music made around the time they were born, Zen Mother are a refreshing corrective. The psych/experimental group is the project of two Virginia transplants, Monika Khot and Adam Wolcott Smith, who share an affinity for the avant-garde. The duo self-recorded their band’s recent album, I Was Made to Be Like Her, and it’s rich with sonic experimentation: impressionistic layers of synth drone, caustic guitar leads, lyrics that repeat like incantations. Tension and release, instead of traditional song structure, gives the music its form, which allows Khot and Smith’s many ideas room to breathe. You’re unlikely to hear a more risk-taking, rewarding rock record out of Seattle this year. ANDREW GOSPE
Danzig, Venom Inc., Power Trip, Mutoid Man
Glenn Danzig sets his ticket prices too high—this is immutable law. I mean, $50 after charges for a Showbox Sodo show? Thank god—and by god, I mean Satan—it’s worth it. Danzig’s first four albums remain perfect encapsulations of the time when hard rock could be simultaneously filthy and transcendent. Venom Inc. are the best bits of black-metal pioneers Venom, and their guitarist Mantas is lucky to be alive following emergency heart surgery earlier this year. Meanwhile, Power Trip and Mutoid Man are two of the best metal acts currently working in the United States. JOSEPH SCHAFER
The Dodos, Prism Tats
The Dodos—the San Francisco indie-folk-rock duo of Meric Long and Logan Kroeber—made big waves with their 2008 sophomore outing, Visiter, which is having its 10-year anniversary. This year also marks the release of the Dodos’ seventh full-length, the rather excellent Certainty Waves, which Long has called the band’s “midlife crisis record.” Certainty Waves finds them plugging in and experimenting with some new sonic textures (horns, fuzzed-out and clean electric guitars, synthesizers likely inspired by Long’s solo project, FAN), while still maintaining their rollicking yet untraditional time signatures. It’s dynamic, dense, and at times urgently heady, but it still sounds like the Dodos, albeit a more intriguing grown-up version of them. LEILANI POLK
Liz Vice, Moda Spira
Gospel, soul, and R&B chanteuse Liz Vice will perform energetic material from her debut album, There's A Light. She'll be joined by singer-songwriter Latifah Alattas's solo project, Moda Spira.
Pony's Halloweekend 2018
Join the Pony staff and guests for a special spooky weekend-long celebration of all things Halloween. Halloweekend kicks off on Friday with Be Stiff!, including new wave and dance-punk sets by DJs Sugar and Mother Church. Saturday is Luv Ladder, hosted by Cannoli with sets from DJ Kirky and Shannon of Light Asylum, a performance by Angel Baby Kill Kill, and a midnight costume contest. Sunday is the World's Spookiest Tea Dance with sets by DJ Sling Dion and DJ King of Pants.
Annual high-key wild throwdown FreakNight, basically a Halloweentown Coachella, features a whole night of live music, dancing, a themed marketplace, and a darkly neon environment of scary circus attractions, bizarre sideshow marvels, and carnival rides. If all you want for Halloween is an opportunity to completely blow out all five of your senses, this is the spooky dance party for you.
Night Of The Living and Dead Halloween Bash
Local bands will pay tribute to artists of the past and present at this night of covers. Expect bangers by Bad Brains, the Jesus and Mary Chain, Pink Floyd, Bauhaus, and Joy Division. Plus, look forward to candy and a costume contest.
Guayaba, Lilac, Izumi, Mira Death
Ready your earthly form to howl at the moon at this showcase of local and regional talent with live sets by swirling cosmic crooner and arachnid protector Guayaba (who had the song of the summer with "Bye Bich"), glitter-draped electro-swoon artist Lilac, the howling and heart-strong singer-songwriter Izumi, and Portland glam-punk banshee Mira Death.
The Internet, Moonchild
After spending some time apart working on solo albums, the Internet finally reunited and put out Hive Mind earlier this year. Following the success of their breakthrough album Ego Death, their fourth LP finds the LA-based band at the top of their game, soaring to new heights on a cloud of ethereal R&B and sensual funk. From the groovy and infectious “La Di Da” to the slow-tempo jam “It Gets Better,” the Internet have proved that they’ve got songs for all your after-hours needs. Joined by the surprisingly jazzy trio Moonchild, the night promises to be one that moves the hips, sparks the L, and lifts the soul. JASMYNE KEIMIG
Halloween Haze with SassyBlack, Who Is She?, DJ K. Hudson
Your stoner friends at Hashtag Cannabis, Pearl Extracts, Zoots, Green Revolution, Experience Organics, and Western Cultured bring you a hazy Halloween showcase of local music, with sets by soul and funk queen SassyBlack, pop-punk supergroup Who Is She? (featuring members of Tacocat, Chastity Belt, and Lisa Prank), and techno spinner DJ K.Hudson.
Dance Yourself Dead
The typical Dance Yourself Clean maintains its central elements of weekend baptism through dance, featuring the Lights & Music DJs, but this time with the most eerie electro-pop they can track down.
Noche De Los Muertos
For Dia de los Muertos, remember the dead by dancing to live DJs at this special edition of Diggin' Deep with special guest Tara Brooks, with sets from resident DJs Wesley Holmes, Ramiro, GriffinGrrl, Lyons, Lucero, Julie Herrera, and many others.
Research: Pearson Sound
As a DJ, producer, and founding member of tastemaking electronic label Hessle Audio, David Kennedy has forged a sound that finds common ground between workmanlike techno and the UK underground. Kennedy cut his teeth at London dubstep nights in the mid ’00s, and his work as Pearson Sound shares the rhythmic facility of the best productions from that era. Functional yet inventive, it’s peak-hour dance music detailed enough for headphone sessions. (A prime example is 2016 floor-filler and arpeggio bonanza “XLB.”) For this DJ set, expect a mix of cutting-edge bass music, techno, and house, among other farther afield sounds. ANDREW GOSPE
SOB X RBE, Quando Rondo
Vallejo’s constantly bubbling crew SOB X RBE add a splash of Bay Area flourish to the current rap scene. They'll be joined by Georgia rapper Quando Rondo on their 2018 Global Gangin Tour.
88RISING: Rich Brian, Joji, Keith Ape, Higher Brothers, KOHH, NIKI, AUGUST 08, Don Krez
Eighteen-year-old Chinese Indonesian hiphop artist Rich Brian will headline this stop on Asian hiphop collective 88Rising's 88 Degrees & Rising Tour, featuring additional sets by the lo-fi-inclined Joji, Keith Ape, Higher Brothers, KOHH, NIKI, August 08, and Don Krez.
The Beetlejuice Halloween Ball with Prom Date Mixtape
Dance your spooky socks off (in your costume, of course) to live New Wave, dance, and synth hits from the '80s, brought to you by Patrick and Daniel's Prom Date Mixtape. There will also be a prom queen and king crowning, '80s horror movies, drink specials, and prizes.
Come As You Aren't
For the last decade or so, the Skylark has hosted Come As You Aren't, a massive concert party wherein local bands compete to be the ultimate tribute group. Whoever has the best costume and live set wins a major cash prize. This year's contestants include members of Happy Heartbreak, Trick Candles, Salt Lick, and many more.
Ty Segall, Shannon Lay
Only six years ago, Ty Segall was playing record stores and midsize clubs. Now he’s headlining two- and three-night stands at large-capacity venues in Brooklyn and Seattle. Any other artist in his shoes might have signed to a major, but Segall has stuck it out with Drag City, the Chicago label that lets him do whatever the fuck he wants, and lately he’s been on a theatrical-rock kick. In 2016, that meant creepy latex masks. In 2017, it was all about the toreador cape, but everything Segall builds rests on a sturdy garage-rock foundation. After the anarchy of 2016’s Emotional Mugger, the latest self-titled record represents a return to a more cohesive form with the sort of hazy ballads and glitter-thrash anthems he does so well. KATHY FENNESSY
Brian Is Ze, Nic Masangkay, Occlusions, Ace
Spend your Halloweekend with QTPOC rockers and hiphop artists, including Austin, Texas' Brian Is Ze, local alt-pop artist Nic Masangkay, Occlusions, and alt-hiphop artist Ace. Costumes are highly encouraged.
Hissing, Cavurn, Foul
When the original crop of classic American death-metal bands popped up, there was something truly harrowing in their caustic delivery. That ugliness has been lost in a lot of the bigger contemporary death-metal acts, but fortunately there is a new wave of underground bands that eschew the mechanical precision of modern studio savants in favor of murky, blown-out, and broken bombardments. If you prefer your death-metal to conjure images of cloaked men raging in dark, gutted basements rather than Guitar Center lurkers flexing their chops in YouTube tutorials, then Seattle’s Hissing are right up your alley. BRIAN COOK
Cardiff’s Boy Azooga sparked my interest as soon as their synthy plunks began tumbling forward in their first single, “Face Behind Her Cigarette,” which pays tribute to the late Nigerian funkman William Onyeabor. Band leader and multi-instrumentalist Davey Newington orchestrated their debut, (One) (Two) (Kung Fu!), to fuel a variety of genres. Start your musical meal off right with the Beach Boys–tinged “Breakfast Epiphany” (and “Breakfast Epiphany II”—which is literally a response to Brian Wilson’s “Don’t Talk [Put Your Head on My Shoulder]”) and complete it with the rip-roaring “Loner Boogie” to maximize the volume of Boy Azooga’s US debut. ABBIE GOBELI
Those looking to conjure an arena-sized new-wave feeling in a majestic historic theater tonight should end their search with Simple Minds’ cinematic, synth-saturated 1980s anthems. The Scottish behemoths endeavor on this rare North American tour to support their latest release, 2018’s Walk Between Worlds. Deep-cut-hungry fans will be pleased to hear such non-hits as the 1981 instrumental “Theme for Great Cities,” but those looking to have their “Don’t You (Forget About Me)” Breakfast Club flashback will also get their impassioned sing-along moment. The venerable, synth-loving art-rockers are more than alive and kicking; they’re thriving in a new gold dream of fearless output after 40 years. BRITTNIE FULLER