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Saturday, January 28, 2012

Tonight in Music: Alabama Shakes, Beat Connection, The Black Swans & More

Posted by Ned Lannamann on Sat, Jan 28, 2012 at 12:23 PM


ALABAMA SHAKES, QUIET LIFE
(Doug Fir, 830 E Burnside) Read our article on Alabama Shakes.


BEAT CONNECTION, WAMPIRE, DJ JEFFREY JERUSALEM, SEX LIFE
(Holocene, 1001 SE Morrison) Saturday night is a great night for sweatin' it out to dancey electropop, and you'll be thrilled by the synth-tastic stylings of Seattle's Beat Connection (voted Seattle Weekly's Best New Band of 2011). Dreamy, ass-shaking grooves will be the order of the night, with the also awesome Wampire, Jeffrey Jerusalem, and Sex Life DJs rounding out the bill. WM. STEVEN HUMPHREY


THE BLACK SWANS, FLASH FLOOD AND THE DIKES, FISHERMEN 3, SIR RICHARD BISHOP
(Kenton Club, 2025 N Kilpatrick) On Yesterday's Wine, Willie Nelson talks to God—literally. And the interesting part is that God talks back. The 1971 album begins with spoken-word dialogue that infuses the rest of the record with a gothic piousness. The Black Swans employed a similar tactic on their 2011 album Don't Blame the Stars, although singer Jerry DeCicca introduces each song by talking not to God but to you, resulting in a record that plays not so much like an album as a nighttime radio show transmitted from somewhere long gone in America's dusty, spooky past. The musical portion collects weather-beaten folk and funereal gospel, haunted by the ghost of violinist Noel Sayre, who died in a swimming accident shortly following the initial recording sessions. The Ohio band plays a surprising but welcome (and free) show at the Kenton Club, opened by former Sun City Girls guitar mage Sir Richard Bishop. NED LANNAMANN


FUJIYA & MIYAGI, ADVENTURES WITH MIGHT, HERE COME DOTS
(Mississippi Studios, 3939 N Mississippi) Fujiya & Miyagi have been together for 12 years and five albums, but that hasn't diminished their passion for krautrock one bit. An obsession for Can and Kraftwerk can't just vanish overnight, not even with the aid of Thom Monahan, producer of the very non-electronic Pernice Brothers and Vetiver. On Ventriloquizzing, Fujiya & Miyagi's dark, spooky dance tunes are composed with just as much precision as ever. Elegant, thoughtfully constructed, and layered with David Best's menacing, robotic whisper-singing—this is music that seems like it must be taken Very Seriously. That's until you realize the seemingly profound lyrics are completely tongue-in-cheek (right?), e.g., "You go up and go down like a yo-yo" repeated over and over again. REBECCA WILSON


BROOKLYN RIDER
(Kaul Auditorium at Reed College, 3203 SE Woodstock) The last time I saw Brooklyn Rider, Meryl Streep and Michelle Obama were watching them with me (so what if we weren't sitting next to each other?). That was on the televised Kennedy Center Honors show for the lifetime achievement of Yo-Yo Ma, the often-smiling cellist who formed an ensemble called the Silk Road Project—which is where the members of Brooklyn Rider met. They're a young string quartet that wants to be more than just an old string quartet; "borderless communication" is their stated goal. And their 2010 concert at Town Hall was some kind of hit. This time they'll do one of Beethoven's late, intense quartets (these are killer pieces of music, and this one is his favorite: Op. 131), "Suite for String Quartet" from Bent by Philip Glass, Kol Nidre by John Zorn, and a work by member player Colin Jacobson. JEN GRAVES

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