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Monday, December 10, 2012

Tonight in Music: Astronautalis/Busdriver, the Shins

Posted by Ned Lannamann on Mon, Dec 10, 2012 at 10:07 AM

(Doug Fir, 830 E Burnside) Tonight's bill is nothing but gold: Opener Busdriver is an LA-based rapper with a dizzying flow, and as for headliner Astronautalis—we could call him a "hiphop indie rocker," but who needs labels when his songs are this smart, weird, and catchy? (I mean, have you seen the video where he dresses up like a vampire and raps about the Revolutionary War? Amazing!) ALISON HALLETT

(Crystal Ballroom, 1332 W Burnside) The Shins have more ex-members than Def Leppard; frontman James Mercer is the one who remains from the first three full-lengths that made the band famous in the first place. But their current lineup is, technically, the Shins' strongest. We've got Joe Plummer of ye ol' Modest Mouse on drums, Yuuki Matthews of Crystal Skulls on bass, Oregon producer extraordinaire Richard Swift on keyboards, and Jessica Dobson of Deep Sea Diver on guitar. So it's a Shins supergroup, of sorts. And seeing as how the band's latest album, Port of Morrow, contains just as much charm, catchy choruses, and witty lyrics as before, even hardcore fans of the original lineup will find it hard not to be enamored of the Shins 2.0. Also, as an unashamed holiday-music junkie, I really hope they squeeze in their cover of Paul McCartney's "Wonderful Christmastime" during tonight's set. MEGAN SELING


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