AU, TU FAWNING, PARENTHETICAL GIRLS, GRANDPARENTS
(Doug Fir, 830 E Burnside) Local bills don't get any better: AU celebrate the release of their magnificent Both Lights album, and Tu Fawning play their only hometown show before the May release of their just-as-magnificent A Monument record. Plus Parenthetical Girls and Grandparents? There's no such thing as too much great local music. NED LANNAMANN Read our article on AU.
FOREVER, TACOCAT, MODERN MARRIAGE
(The Know, 2026 NE Alberta) TacocaT's band name encapsulates the two things I love best in this world in one adorable palindrome—and "adorable" pretty well sums up the jangly, blast-from-the '90s indie pop dished out on their new EP, Take Me to Your Dealer. But there's a bratty edge to TacocaT's chirpy vocals and yeah-yeah choruses—take "Cat Fancy," their ode to the closed-circuit cuteness of "the world's most widely read cat magazine." "All cats all the time/that's what you're gonna get," the lyrics snark. "Who cares about world affairs/who cares about politics?" They also have a song called "F. U. #8," about a bus that's always late. I like to pretend it's about the #15. That bus is the worst. ALISON HALLETT
PETER CASE, PAUL COLLINS, SUMMER TWINS, CARNABETIAN ARMY
(Star Theater, 13 NW 6th) Both Peter Case and Paul Collins have enjoyed long careers as two of the great purveyors of real-time-and-beyond post-punk pop: Case fronted the Plimsouls (makers of '83 hit "A Million Miles Away") and launched a troubadourian solo career (his 1986 cover of the Pogues' "A Pair of Brown Eyes" was the "My Heart Will Go On" of my high-school class), while Collins carried on as the leader of the Beat (not the English Beat, but rather Paul Collins' Beat). But everything you need to know to love both of them forever can be found on the only release by the Nerves, a four-song EP that Collins, Case, and guitarist Jack Lee released in 1976. Kicking off with the great, gritty original of "Hangin' on the Telephone" and perfect 'til the end, The Nerves captures a talent-packed band finding their voices, and people with ears will love it forever. Tonight the Star Theater hosts the Peter Case and Paul Collins Reunion Tribute to the Nerves, which is exactly what it says it is, and hurrah. DAVID SCHMADER
THE MINDERS, SPOOKIES, WELSH BOWMAN
(Ella Street Social Club, 714 SW 20th Pl) Triple threat pop bills this savage occur so infrequently in this city that there aren't many valid excuses for passing them up (you're under 21; you'll be on Wheel of Fortune that night). Welsh Bowmen released an astonishingly good debut 7-inch last summer, which contained the ferocious garage-pop number "Brenda" (reminiscent of Bare Wires, or even early Kinks, cranked up to 11). Ex-Shaky Hand and current Spookies member Mayhaw Hoons sounds like an impassioned John Linnell (of They Might Be Giants) when he sings, reared equally on late-'80s pop culture and Hard Day's Night-era Beatles. And everybody should already know how great the Minders are. If you don't, here's a hint: Elliott Smith covered one of their songs ("Hooray For Tuesday"), which is by no means their best. So get with it. MORGAN TROPER
LOMA PRIETA, BIRDS IN ROW, COWER
(PSU's Food for Thought CafÉ, 1825 SW Broadway) Snotty, stoner Portland punk-rock pundits Cower straggled through a few distinct stylistic phases before finally settling on their current sound, exemplified on their 2010 LP Land Before Time, which could roughly be described as Anthony Green fronting a ballsier Black Sabbath in bizarro 1970. Through their evolution, they've maintained their loyal following (which continues to expand), and remain one of the most unifying bands, punk or otherwise, within the all-ages pocket of the PDX music scene. Even the typically judgmental hardcore puritans aren't afraid to let their hair down and have some good old-fashioned fun during a Cower set. MORGAN TROPER
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