PIERCED ARROWS, SUICIDE NOTES, NO TOMORROW BOYS
(Slabtown, 1033 NW 16th) With galloping drums and an opening line of "Let's go, let's go, let's go... to the beach!" the Suicide Notes have their sights set on your summertime. The rest of "Beach Song," the B-side of the Portland group's brand new single, has a similar element of party-hearty menace: By way of three-part girl harmonies, some go-go party vibes, and a thick punk punch, the Suicide Notes are going to make sure that you will have a good time, dammit. "Beach Song" surfs along, obtaining Who-like power chords and an extended power-pop coda along the way, and turns into a veritable epic—a marked contrast to the abbreviated amphetamine rush of A-side "Suicide Note," a breakup song that's about as black as black humor gets. The Suicide Notes celebrate the 7-inch's release tonight with the downright heroic Pierced Arrows, who are utterly incapable of playing a disappointing show. NED LANNAMANN
MURDER BY DEATH, HA HA TONKA, CORY CHISEL AND THE WANDERING SONS
(Dante's, 1 SW 3rd) It could be due to the fact that I just finished watching the 2010 Coen Brothers remake of True Grit, but the vocals on Murder by Death's "White Noise," from 2010's Good Morning, Magpie, sound like what would result from getting a drunk Jeff Bridges to slur cowboy poetry. A low, cobwebbed voice repeatedly asks the listener to meet in a valley while the band beneath pioneers a dark-sky, low-tuned Americana. It's eerie, but interestingly engaging—and ominous enough to soundtrack the rise of some living thing from a bayou at midnight. But I address that song knowing it's only a recent single in their hearty history of releases; their sixth album, Bitter Drink, Bitter Moon, comes out next month. These guys have been working nonstop since 2000, and have more or less stayed true to the diet folk-punk sound they became known for upon their inception. JONATHAN MAGDALENO
PATAHA HISS, HEY LOVER, PISS TEST
(The Know, 2026 NE Alberta) The bubblegum blitzkrieg bop of Pataha Hiss eschews the most familiar element of garage rock—the guitar—in favor of buzzing organ and earthquake bass. With just a handful of chords and tons of attitude, the trio invokes a veritable sugar buzz on their new four-song 7-inch, Dirrty Love, committing a couple pop gems ("Dear Joey," "Glad to See You Go") to disc along the way. It's a super fun record, bound to add some cheeky sleaze to even the most uptight dance party, and the group plays their long-awaited hometown record release show after touring through California last month. Released by the reliable Hovercraft label, Dirrty Love basically zooms out of the speakers ready for action, and fittingly, Pataha Hiss' show tonight is going to be a crushingly good bash. NL
FIFTY: DJ ARTHUR M, DJ BOBBY DANGEROUS, DJ HANUKKAH MIRACLE
(Holocene, 1001 SE Morrison) Time to traipse through history with your fave guide DJ Cooky Parker (AKA DJ Arthur M). For this steamy dance party, Fifty: A Possible History of Summer Jams, he's playing summer-soaked songs from the last five decades, hopping from the sassy girl groups of the 1960s to the booty-burners of today. COURTNEY FERGUSON
FESTIVAL OF AMERICANA: NICK JAINA, THE FEATURES, THE PARSON RED HEADS, THE MOONDOGGIES & MORE
(Grand Lodge, 3505 Pacific, Forest Grove) In just its second year, McMenamins' Festival of Americana has cornered the market on folks who aren't up to the time commitment, crowds, and expense of Pickathon. Judging by the lineup, these people include aging hippies who want to revisit their festival days alongside their children and grandchildren. The festival kicks off on Friday with Garcia Birthday Band, who interpret (not cover!) the Grateful Dead, also an apparent influence on one of the festival's youngest bands, the Moondoggies out of Seattle, who play Saturday. But the psychedelic jams end there. Tennessee funk band the Features augment what is otherwise a Northwest-heavy bill: Nick Jaina, with his heart on his sleeve; the tireless Freak Mountain Ramblers; Sassparilla, at the convergence of folk and punk; the Parson Red Heads, who have a cover of Nick Lowe's "Don't Lose Your Grip on Love" coming out on next month's Lowe Country tribute album; and the Shook Twins, with their close harmonies and loops by way of the Great Depression. REBECCA WILSON
HEAVY KINGDOM with WINO and CONNY OCHS, MIKE SCHEIDT, AERIAL RUIN
(Rotture, 315 SE 3rd) Scott "Wino" Weinrich has the Midas touch. He's been cranking out tunes since the '70s, and hasn't missed a step yet. The list of influential bands in the stoner/doom genre that he started, or belonged to, grows daily. A couple years ago, Wino joined the ranks of other harbingers of heaviness like Scott Kelly and Mike Scheidt, by trading his full stack and pedal board for an acoustic guitar. He released Adrift, a strikingly powerful acoustic record that features his gruff and grizzled style (mostly) unplugged. The acoustic experiment seems to be successful for Wino. So far this year he pumped out Labour of Love and Heavy Kingdom with German singer/songwriter Conny Ochs. Fans of Wino know that he has always had something political or spiritual to say through his music, and with his new acoustic persona, he seems to have found messages important enough to put subtly, instead of blasted into space on a fuzzed out riff. Just because Wino doesn't have a couple thousand watts behind him doesn't mean he can't be heavy. ARIS WALES
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