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Altin Gün combines the musical backgrounds of its Turkish, Indonesian, and Dutch members for a "dirty blend of funk rhythms, wah-wah guitars, and analogue organs." Catch the sextet when they return to Seattle with Gig Harbor dream-pop outfit Moon Age.
Alto saxophonist and famed improviser Darius Jones is this year's Earshot Artist-in-Residence. He'll reprise his legendary 2018 Earshot solo performance, an expansive display of his ability to follow the thread of modern jazz from the work of Johnny Hodges to now.
ECHOES - A Tribute Concert Benefiting The AMP (AIDS Memorial Pathway)
This fundraiser for the AMP: AIDS Memorial Pathway will feature storytelling, dance, and live music from the likes of singer-songwriter Alexandria Henderson, the Seattle Men’s and Women’s Choruses, and Whim W’him.
Ukrainian quartet DakhaBrakha, a name that means “give/take” in the old Ukrainian language, play what they describe as “ethno chaos," accompanied by traditional instrumentation of Indian, Arabic, African, Russian, and Australian origin.
Hawaii’s prodigious ukulele virtuoso has pushed the boundaries of what seems possible on four strings for a few decades, jumping through genres (jazz, rock, funk, classical music, folk, bluegrass, and even flamenco), and mixing original compositions with covers that have his own personal stamp of uke agility and adventurous originality; 2018’s The Greatest Day finds him backed by a three-piece band, and amid original material, you’ll find covers that include a spacy yet spirited, psych-jazz take on Jimi Hendrix’s “If 6 Was 9” featuring Jerry Douglas on dobro. LEILANI POLK
Dropkick Murphys, Clutch, Russ Rankin
Celtic punk band Dropkick Murphys will jig-shred through Seattle on their fall tour, joined by '90s-formed Maryland rockers Clutch, and Russ Rankin of Good Riddance.
An Evening with Pete Yorn
LA-based, Jersey-bred, critically lauded singer-songwriter Pete Yorn will come to town on his You & Me Solo Acoustic Tour.
Faye Webster is an Atlanta-based singer-songwriter who loves the pedal steel guitar. Often clad in a grandma-vibing visor, her brand of weirdo, folk-rooted music is charming and breezy. But if you pay attention, a thread of sorrow runs through it. An associate of Awful Records, Webster somewhat surprisingly has close ties to the ATL rap community. Her most recent album, Atlanta Millionaires Club, features winsome tracks like “Right Side of My Neck” and hard-hitting cuts like “Flowers,” which taps Atlanta rapper Father. While I do find the mash-up more than a little eye-roll inducing, it works. JASMYNE KEIMIG
Blonde Redhead's Kazu Makino will come to Seattle in support of her new solo album, Adult Baby.
Up-and-coming indie rockers the Regrettes describe themselves as "just some LA babies playin' rock n roll." Catch them in town with fellow California rockers Greer.
Stereolab have built a towering canon by cleverly synthesizing their members' impeccable, eclectic musical tastes. Their sophisticated bricolage of elements—krautrock's motorik grooves, Can and the Velvet Underground's droning keyboards and chugging guitars, dulcet vocals somewhere between Françoise Hardy and Astrud Gilberto, analog-synth fuckery à la Silver Apples and the BBC Radiophonic Workshop, suave appropriation of loungey smoothness—coalesces into bewitching songs that age well. DAVE SEGAL
Aldous Harding, Hand Habits
The world needs more weirdos to stay weird, and Aldous Harding is holding it down. The New Zealand folk singer-songwriter’s music is a bit unsettling—not in a spooky way, but like her songs and voice might rip open the fabric of time. “The Barrel” off third album Designer is an absolute banger, with the accompanying music video featuring Harding dressed like a Hieronymus Bosch figure, moving like a puppet on-screen. She sings about showing the ferret to the egg. It’s genius and strange and makes me feel like perhaps I’ve witnessed a spell being cast. More of this, please! JASMYNE KEIMIG
Todd Snider, Ramblin' Jack Elliott
Trapped in that between-rock-and-a-country place that hobbled Lucinda Williams for so long, Todd Snider is the best American songwriter you've maybe never heard of. The Williams comparison is an imperfect one: Snider doesn't seem driven to strive for a career culmination/breakthrough à la Car Wheels on a Gravel Road (he makes great records, not masterworks), plus he's 10,000 times funnier than Williams could ever be, even if she were wearing a rainbow wig and chasing a dog with a ham in its mouth. Along with his killer wit, Snider's signature is a miraculous lack of sentimentality. As a weathered, perceptive, fortysomething working artist, Snider's subjects often come from the hard-luck American underbelly. But Snider's heroes aren't beautiful losers—they're day-labor construction workers who pay by the week at roadside motels. DAVE SEGAL
Max Richter, American Contemporary Music Ensemble, Grace Davidson
My intro to German-born UK-based avant composer Max Richter came via The Leftovers, that fantastic yet short-lived postapocalyptic HBO series from Damon Lindelof. Richter scored the show’s main theme, and numerous moments throughout the series, to dramatic, exquisite, evocative effect. His Leftovers work made you feel things, deeply. He’s also been tapped for loads of other film and TV soundtracks—Arrival, Black Mirror, Mary Queen of Scots, Ad Astra—in addition to releasing eight albums that vary between ambient, classical, and post-minimalist sounds. In 2015, he released Sleep, an 8.5-hour-long “listening experience” based on the neuroscience of sleep and meant to score a full night's rest. He performed it in its entirety outdoors in LA’s Grand Park. Audience members were spread out on 560 beds, and it was timed so that the final movement occurred at dawn. He was joined by members of the American Contemporary Music Ensemble and singer Grace Davidson, both of whom will accompany Richter on his Seattle date, during which they’ll be staging a shortened version of Sleep. He’ll also premiere material from his upcoming album, Deutsche Grammofon. LEILANI POLK
Circles Around The Sun, William Tyler
Formed by guitarist Neal Casal and keyboardist Adam MacDougall of blues-rock band the Chris Robinson Brotherhood, Circles Around the Sun (aka CATS) will bring their cosmic brand of funk to Seattle with support from folk-pop solo artist William Tyler.
Knife Knights, Darius Jones, Stas Thee Boss
Knife Knights is essentially a project by two wonderful musical minds, that of Ishmael Butler and Erik Blood. The two first met in 2003—but in 2009, Blood produced and mixed the two debut EPs by Shabazz Palaces (a duo made up of Butler and Tendai Maraire). In 2017, Blood and Butler finally came together in Knife Knights, which is less a cultural/music project like Shabazz Palaces and more of an exploration of sound itself, like Explosions in the Sky. With Knife Knights, one gets lost in the infinities of processed and reprocessed music. At this Earshot Jazz Festival concert, they will perform with support from NYC alto sax player and composer Darius Jones and Seattle’s own future soul artist Stas Thee Boss. CHARLES MUDEDE
Technically gifted Alabama country rapper Yelawolf, who raps about the "white, rural, Southern experience," as Stranger contributor Andrew Gospe has noted, will come through town on his GhettoCowboy Tour.
Babymetal, The Hu
Pop music and extreme heavy metal share a terse and often secretive relationship—Lady Gaga is an out-of-the-closet metalhead, and every so often you’ll hear someone like Yngwie Malmsteen cover ABBA. But the two genres have never collided with so much saccharine sweetness as with Japan’s Babymetal. Emphasis on saccharine: They even play a song called “Gimme Chocolate.” The three female idols who front the outfit sing and dance like typical Japanese pop icons while their masked backing band play ripping technical-death-metal licks. It’s absurd, over the top, and tons of fun. You don’t need a patch jacket to bang your head during songs like “Megitsune.” JOSEPH SCHAFER
All Your Sisters, Grave Babies, Youryoungbody
LA-based electronic noise punks All Your Sisters will head up this industrial show with their "decidedly non-retro" sound, joined by local darkwave duo Youryoungbody and grungy pop quartet Grave Babies.
Black Lips, Blue Rose Rounders
The Black Lips are tough to write about, since their gnarly, raucous flower-freak sound was so original and dedicated for a very small subset of music when they started grinding on their own, but now that so many shitty garage-filth-slacker-punk bands have aped their sound, it’s difficult to separate the founding fathers from the apostles. Because, of course, the Black Lips didn’t invent punk or rock or punk rock, but they did manage to shake some nasty Atlanta salt on their trade in a way that made their subgenre more surreally juvenile (and thus accessible) while also showcasing a talent for hiding real skill amid woozy shithole humor. I don’t think the most fucked-up band at the end of the night deserves a trophy, but it remains true that these guys have sacrificed some serious liver tissue for almost two decades now in a supposedly slacker genre, so some credit is still due. KIM SELLING
Joshua Radin, The Weepies, Lily Kershaw
Joshua Radin has the monopoly on emotionally resonant indie-rock, and will be illustrating the reasons for his success in a set flanked by married pop-folk duo the Weepies and singer-songwriter Lily Kershaw (whose music has appeared in several episodes of Criminal Minds).
The KVB, Numb.er
UK psychedelic synthwave duo the KVB will bring their reverb-heavy shoegaze across the pond on their North America Tour. They'll take the stage after LA-based darkwave outfit Numb.er.
LIVE, Bush, Our Lady Peace
Platinum-selling arena rockers LIVE (who first achieved success from their hit album Throwing Copper) will band together with Chris Traynor-led British rock band Bush and Canada's Our Lady Peace for a super tour brimming with mid-'90s nostalgia.
British rock vet Richard Wakeman, formerly of Yes, will come to Seattle solo on his Grumpy Old Rock Star Tour.
Andrew Combs, Guests
Texas-born, Nashville-based singer-songwriter Andrew Combs will ride through town on the heels of his new folk-Americana album, Ideal Man.
The Human Experience, Gone Gone Beyond, Lazy Syrup Orchestra
The Human Experience is the music project of live electronic composer, multi-instrumentalist, and producer David Block, who’s celebrating 10 years with a new album, Stillness in Motion, and a tour that finds him joined by his live band, Gone Gone Beyond (made up of multi-instrumentalist/singer-songwriters Danny Musengo, Kat Factor, and Mel Seme). Their music doesn’t feel like electro at all; it feels organic, a blend of future folk and world fusion studded with elements of acoustic rock, soul, and ambient down-tempo grooviness. Block juggles performing, composing, and conducting live on stage, and this show will feature two sets: a live-band performance accompanied by Gone Gone Beyond followed by a headline DJ set from the Human Experience. RIYL: Thievery Corporation, Juana Molina. LEILANI POLK
Ononos, Haunted Horses, Bl_ank
Former Stranger staffer Kelly O has written, "Ononos aren’t the kind of group that cranks out albums—in fact, they’ve been a band for years now, with nary a single recorded, purchasable artifact. Ononos are probably better described as a multimedia project—a collaboration among three friends, mixing their combined interests in music and conceptual video art. They’ve stated they’re heavily influenced by dadaism and absurdism—and their love of bands like the Germs, Misfits, and the Screamers, as well as industrial pioneers Throbbing Gristle and their namesake, Yoko Ono." The synth-punk band will headline in Eastlake with support from industrial punks Haunted Horses and experimental Nashville outfit Bl_ank.
Highly Suspect, Slothrust
Dance to festival-ready jams from Grammy-nominated Brooklyn alt-renegades Highly Suspect after some opening songs from jazz- and blues-charged rock trio Slothrust.
Voodoo Ranger Hop Avenger IPA Launch Party
Local rockers Bearaxe and Breaks and Swells will play live to accompany your sips of New Belgium Brewing's Voodoo Ranger Hop Avenger IPA.
Mozart's stunning and famously unfinished Requiem presents a musical bridge between life and death. Get ready for the Seattle Choral Company's alternately apocalyptic and angelic "Confutatis," which is one of the most intense passages of music ever written. The symphony is putting two other requiems on the program—Toru Takemitsu's Requiem for String Orchestra and Karl Amadeus Hartmann's Concerto funebre—giving the audience an opportunity to explore classical-era and contemporary interpretations of death. A natural choice for the middle of October, when Seattle shuffles off the last few rays of autumnal light and grows gloomier. RICH SMITH
Peyroux, an American-born jazz singer/songwriter and guitarist who's been compared to Billie Holiday and was discovered busking on the streets of Paris, is touring in support of her last album, Anthem.
"Neil Young and Bruce Springsteen remain useful touchstones for describing Son Volt's approach, from the alternating potency and delicacy of the guitars to the singers' shared willingness to turn a jaundiced eye to cruel power structures," wrote NPR's Stephen Thompson in 2017. Join the Jay Farrar-fronted group for some new material and old favorites.
I love the Seattle Symphony's [untitled] series. The concert happens later in the evening (10 pm) in the lobby of Benaroya Hall. Some dress more casually for the event, others dress to the nines because they're the kind of people who do that. The people-watching is excellent and the music is always contemporary and daring. At this iteration, the symphony presents an evening of sacred music by Venetian composer Gabrieli interwoven with the works of contemporary American composers Schuller, Sampson, and DiLorenzo. RICH SMITH
Lusine with Trent Moorman, Ovoid, IG88
Seems like I've been writing about Lusine (aka Seattle electronic-music producer Jeff McIlwain) for—*checks notes*—about 15 years. The last few of them, I've been waiting for his quality control to decline, as it does with most musicians who've been in the game as long as he has (since 1999). But he refuses to fade. A trusty mainstay with the respected Ghostly International label, Lusine released the strong, song-based, quasi-techno charmer Sensorimotor last year. Bolstered by the nimble, funky drumming of Trent Moorman and coolly restrained vocals from a trio of singers, the album comes off like an introvert's idea of a party-centric dance record. The thing is, Lusine is even better live than on disc; he’s a master of subtle dynamics and controlled, euphoric swells. DAVE SEGAL
Brazilian-American pianist, vocalist, and composer Clarice Assad will bring the sounds of Rio de Janeiro to Seattle with her fusion set tying together Brazilian culture, Romanticism, world music, and jazz.
Cécile McLorin Salvant with Aaron Diehl Trio
In 2016, Cécile McLorin Salvant won the Grammy Award for Best Jazz Vocal Album for her record For One To Love. She is celebrated for her ability to bring together the connections between jazz, vaudeville, blues, and folk music with her strong tone. Salvant will be joined by pianist Aaron Diehl and his trio.
The Posies with Ken Stringfellow
Melancholy indie-rockers the Posies will play an acoustic set with Ken Stringfellow, who's noted for having toured with R.E.M. and Big Star.
Jade Bird, Flyte
Young rising London star Jade Bird brings together folk and pop in her work, buoyed by her charismatic voice and unique, genre-blending writing talent. She'll be joined by London alt-pop group Flyte.
Jakob Ogawa, niña
I first heard Norwegian musician Jakob Ogawa on the truly excellent soundtrack to the third season of HBO’s stoner dramedy High Maintenance. Ogawa’s mix of lo-fi indie pop and chilled-out R&B beats is perfect for chatting with a gruff but charming weed man while unloading about your neurotic Brooklyn existence over an indica blunt. Or grooving—especially to “You and I.” The Los Angeles/New York–based duo niña will open the show with their melancholic lo-fi dream pop. JASMYNE KEIMIG
The Moberlys, Tough Times, Ball Bag
I’m always excited knowing that Seattle’s best power-pop group ever, the Moberlys, are still gigging around! Not that frontman Jim Basnight ever seems to rest. But then who better to keep the flames of strident songwriting, big boss-ringing guitar chords, and sweet harmonies alight? He’s been at it for more than 40 years, so I’d trust him. Warming up for the Moberlys on this night are Tough Times, who play cool, catchy 1970s-inspired punk (which also wouldn’t be out of place on The Thing That Ate Floyd comp), and Ball Bag, locals who shred “classic, mid-tempo, Northwest-style dirgey punk.” MIKE NIPPER
The Purrs, Oceanwires, Loose Wing
Seattle psych-rock outfit the Purrs have been playing together for over a decade, with blistering, whiskey-soaked performances, and a roaring blues-rock sound. They'll be joined by Seattle four-piece Oceanwires and Loose Wing, who describe their sound as "a swirling blend of psychedelic Americana and old-school college rock."
Austin soul group Black Pumas, led by Grammy-winning guitarist Adrian Quesada, is described as "Wu-Tang Clan meets James Brown" by KCRW. If that's in your wheelhouse, get yourself to the duo's Seattle tour stop with New Orleans-style soul artist Neal Francis.
Renaissance BITCH Release Party!
Donte Johnson "Da Qween" will drop their newest project Renaissance Bitch with support from hometown heroes DJ IllogicaLogic, DoNormaal, Guayaba, and the Boo.
Andrew Bird, Meshell Ndegeocello
Twelve albums deep, and Andrew Bird is still taking my breath away. His classy whistle-blown, violin-swept baroque pop has always had a certain groovy swagger, and he leans into it while taking a sharper turn into his folk and rock tendencies on the finely wrought My Finest Work Yet. It’s his most overtly political outing to date, with themes of the country’s divisive atmosphere, climate change, and apathy littered throughout. (The triumphant chorus that rages against the darkness bubbling beneath the surface in “Olympians” is an album highlight.) Bird’s vocals feel like a supple caress to the consciousness, his lower-toned, pitch-perfect, mellifluous, mild, and woolly quality conversely stunning and comforting. Support on this tour from funk/soul/jazz/rock singer, songwriter, and bass slinger Meshell Ndegeocello, who’s touring behind her own 12th outing, Ventriloquism, which includes covers of 11 R&B and pop tracks from the 1980s and ’90s, including a breezy, ethereal take on TLC’s “Waterfalls.” LEILANI POLK
Arihanna - A Dance Party for Ari & Riri with Seattle’s Best Drag Queens!
As if a dance party dedicated to Ariana Grande and Rihanna weren't enough, this Saturday-night treat will also feature performances by local drag queens Londyn Bradshaw, Kylie Mooncakes, LuChi, and Issa Man.
Big Boi’s post-Outkast career has seen the ATL rapper with the effortless flow—which can be syrupy or serpentine, his rhymes fun, upbeat, and always clever—release three high-quality solo LPs and a collab, beginning with his fantastic debut, 2010’s Sir Lucious Left Foot: The Son of Chico Dusty (see: “Back Up Plan,” “Turns Me On,” “Shutterbugg,” “Hustle Blood,” etc.). Then came 2012’s Vicious Lies and Dangerous Rumors (a sexy, groovy outing that cemented his creative relationship with Phantogram and prompted their co-project, Big Grams, in 2015), and most recently and probably most pop-catchily, Boomiverse (2017); one of its finest tracks, the oddly-paced, keys-fueled good time that is “All Night,” was Big Boi’s highest charter as a solo artist to date. He lands in town shortly after dropping “Intentions,” a smooth electro-funk joint with CeeLo Green and Sleepy Brown that’s the first single off Big Boi’s upcoming collaborative album with the latter, Big Sleepover, due out sometime next year. LEILANI POLK
Devendra Banhart, Daniel Higgs
Listening to the new Devendra Banhart album made me immediately want to text all my friends from high school, to ask if anyone still listens to the ol’ psychedelic folk artist. His 10th and most recent album, Ma, is fucking pleasant as hell. Made after Banhart realized he might not ever reproduce, the record is meant to impart lessons on the child he may never get around to having. He’s trying to make sense of everything he’s learned in life, I suppose, singing in English, Japanese, Spanish, and Portuguese. It’s really Banhart at his best, loungey and weird. Reflective, too. Unmissable cuts: “Taking a Page,” “Love Song,” and “Carolina.” JASMYNE KEIMIG
Hozier, Freya Ridings
Even if you think you're unfamiliar with Irish singer-songwriter Hozier, you've no doubt heard his wildly popular 2013 single "Take Me to Church." He'll come to Seattle on this autumn tour stop with English songwriter Freya Ridings (whom you probably know from her 2017 single "Lost Without You") in tow.
Jukebox The Ghost Presents HalloQueen with Zach Jones & The Tricky Bits
Enjoy a fresh twist on piano-rock at this showcase with Seattle five-piece HalloQueen and Brooklyn's Zach Jones and the Tricky Bits.
The Portland Mercury's Mark Lore has written, "Møtrik belongs to the massive faction of American bands that have copped Germany’s more otherworldly musical elements. But on Safety Copy, the group expertly ties those sounds together with decades of greasy rock ’n’ roll mutations. Møtrik’s sincerity, and their respect and love for the music, seals the deal."
Taste of Iceland in Seattle: Reykjavik Calling
Promising Icelandic artists Kælan Mikla (a darkwave/synth-punk band whose fanbase includes the Cure's Robert Smith) and Sólstafir will share the stage.
The Who, Liam Gallagher
One of the Big 4 original British Invasion groups whose back catalog has withstood the test of time, the Who return for perhaps the last time to give die-hard fans a stadium-sized wallop. They’ll be rooting on singer Roger Daltrey and guitarist/vocalist/lyricist Pete Townshend, whose best songs—“Instant Party,” “My Generation,” “Can’t Explain,” “The Ox” (written with John Entwistle, Keith Moon, and Nicky Hopkins), “Run Run Run,” “Baba O’Riley,” “Eminence Front,” etc.—swagger with more bravado than most from their peak era (mid ’60s–early ’70s) and country (England). For sheer sonic power and lyrical prowess, the Who are hard to beat. Opener Liam Gallagher boasted one of the brattiest, Lennon/Rotten-est voices in rock with world-class plagiarists Oasis and in Beady Eye. In his solo career, however, Gallagher has released two albums of accessible journeyman rock. The most entertaining thing about Liam these days is his chronic feud with older brother Noel. DAVE SEGAL
Grace Love in Concert
Our city is SO lucky to have Ms. Grace Love. In just the last few years, her name AND full-throttle singing, both with the True Loves and solo, has excited casual listeners and dance floors across the globe. First, the True Loves’ records blew up (“Fire” is still in heavy rotation), and now her two post–True Loves 45s on Europe’s Cannonball label (especially her first Cannonball side, the string-laced dancer “Higher”) are a bumping testimony that, yes, Seattle does have soul. Don't miss this stellar event tonight—go fall in love with Love, again. MIKE NIPPER
Global Rhythms: Trichy Sankaran with Ganesh Rajagopalan
Ganesh Rajagopalan and Trichy Sankaran, so-called ambassadors of the violin and the mridangam (an Indian percussion instrument also known as a Tannumai), respectively, will join forces for this installment of Town Hall's Global Rhythms Series.
If you think opera is all bombast and tragic onstage death, the music of Gioachino Rossini will reveal the genre's capacity for outright bubbliness. Seattle Opera's Lindy Hume will take inspiration from English music hall comedy and Victorian decor for this extravagant-sounding production.
Over the last 21 years, Dominick Fernow has established a cult following among noiseniks for his Prurient project. “Were the Marquis de Sade alive, he’d find Prurient a trifle overblown,” I wrote about Prurient in these pages 11 years ago. Since 2011, Fernow has also conducted a rewarding side hustle as Vatican Shadow. For top labels such as Hospital Productions and Ostgut Ton, he’s created tenebrous abstract electronic music and pugilistic techno that lets no color into its matrices except black. If German philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche (The Antichrist, Beyond Good and Evil, etc.) were around now, he’d be into Vatican Shadow’s will-to-power techno and its S&M beats. DAVE SEGAL
JPEGMafia, Butch Dawson
The rare youngish American rapper to get featured in highbrow British magazine the Wire, JPEGMAFIA (aka Jamaican American MC Barrington Hendricks) has used his experience of racism in Alabama and travels in the air force to shape his lyrical outlook and sonic approach—both of which are among the most galvanizing in modern hip-hop. Hendricks's military service has likely conferred a rugged discipline to his MCing and production skills—as well as a biting cynicism and darkness that are exhilarating. His latest album, 2018's Veteran, is a wild ride through rhythmic and verbal extremism. DAVE SEGAL
DJ OCnotes, Smacktalk
A key member of the Black Constellation and the groups Metal Chocolates, Indian Agent, and FREEKAZOIDZ, OCnotes is a wise choice for Earshot, as his excellent, mercurial productions and various club DJ sets have revealed a mind attuned to diverse musical influences and an ability to synthesize unlikely connections among them. DAVE SEGAL
Danish singer and composer Nanna Øland Fabricius, aka Oh Land, has gained traction by opening for the likes of Katy Perry and Sia. Catch her in Seattle on her first headlining tour.
Thom Yorke’s solo output is, in some ways, clearly related to what he does with his mega band Radiohead, and in other ways departs from it with a swan dive into the deep end of electronic experimentation. He explores sounds, textures, and beats in cold, minimal soundscapes pierced by the odd rays of warmth (like the groovy bass line of “Impossible Knots,” or when “Twist” segues from its chilly starkness to glowing, expansive waves of sound), and multitracks his delicate falsetto into weird multilayered vox approximations, or leaves it bare as it drifts and slinks and soars over the music. This show has been sold out since day one, because the chance to see Yorke in such an intimate venue is an opportunity that few Radiohead fans will pass up. LEILANI POLK