(Pendarvis Farm, 16581 SE Hagen, Happy Valley) If you've pinched your pennies and finally ventured out to Pickathon in years past, you know just how awesome this music fest is. It's worth every hard-earned ducat to visit the lovely Pendarvis Farm, camp in the woods, eat amazing food, and listen to spectacular music under the stars. This is the stuff of winter dreams. COURTNEY FERGUSON Read our article on Pickathon and check out this year's picks.
SMMR BMMR: AUDACITY, GUANTANAMO BAYWATCH, WHITE FANG, THE BUGS, & MORE
(Star Theater, 13 NW 6th) Summer's best and greasiest punk-rock party is upon us. The SMMR BMMR, now in its seventh year—still too young to be left home alone—has in the past been shuttled around various Portland venues like a latchkey kid, but it's found a fitting home at the Star Theater. The Star's excellent patio will host several of the bands until dusk, at which time things move indoors. This year's lineup is bulletproof, including the excellent La Luz, the Seattle four-piece who've updated classic girl-group sounds for the new millennium, and rock the fuck out in the process. There's also the Wimps—don't let the name fool you—and Kepi Ghoulie to round out Friday night, while Saturday boasts the dynamite Audacity from Fullerton, California. Their recent, excellent Mellow Cruisers platter (via Recess and Burger Records) is a giddy head-rush of sparkling pop and boot-to-the-head punk. It's a ticking bomb of fun. NED LANNAMANN
THE PARSON RED HEADS, OZARKS
(Bunk Bar, 1028 SE Water) On the heels of the expansive, folk-tinged Yearling, the Parson Red Heads took a step back—or forward, depending on your perspective—for their upcoming third full-length, Orb Weaver. Eschewing the meticulous prodding of their usual songwriting and recording regimen, the band instead employed Minus 5 maestro Scott McCaughey, who encouraged a no-frills, all-live approach. The result is staggeringly good, and easily the celebrated locals' best effort to date for a group whose Americana roots-rock is given a psychedelic pop-rock facelift. Those eager to hear Orb Weaver will have to be patient, though; tonight's free show sees the band performing their 2007 debut album King Giraffe in full. RYAN J. PRADO
RVIVR, JUICY KARKASS, 48 THRILLS
(Katie O'Brien's, 2809 NE Sandy) Over the past few years, Olympia's Rumbletowne Records has been putting out some of the best heart-on-sleeve punk records that the Cascadian region has to offer. Tonight's show offers a chance to see the label's flagship band, RVIVR. After two full-lengths and a collection of limited 7-inch releases, Erica Freas and Matt Canino have mastered the art of trading catchy and uplifting shouted vocals. The release show that took place earlier this year for their latest album, The Beauty Between, will probably end up going down as one of my live music moments of the year. The enthusiasm and sheer joy on display is contagious, and recent show turnouts make it pretty clear that RVIVR fever has been spreading rapidly since their basement-show days. Rightfully so—it's a breath of (sweaty) fresh air to hear a band doing this sound so well today. CHIPP TERWILLIGER
THE LORD WEIRD SLOUGH FEG, GRACEON, LESBIAN, EIGHT BELLS, KRYSTOS
(Ash Street Saloon, 225 SW Ash) A band's gotta be pretty trusting of their fan base's patience and dedication to drop an epic 44-minute-plus song on them, but if Sleep and Jethro Tull could get away with it, so can Seattle's Lesbian. The band's most recent long-player (emphasis on long, obviously), Forestelevision, is a multifaceted sonic journey meant to be enjoyed in one sitting. Naturally the song contains several movements and sections that break up the feel. It goes from crushing doom to flights of fluttering psychedelia, and finally into King Diamond-esque vocals that bring up the rear. Due to the seamlessness of it all, there's no doubt that Lesbian wants the listener to take it all in at once. So plant yourself firmly in your ass-groove, grip that four-foot bong tightly between your legs, and prepare for blast off. ARIS WALES
HOCKEY, SAINT MOTEL, SWIMM
(Wonder Ballroom, 128 NE Russell) Two Man Advantage, the Zambonis, Hanson Brothers—those are hockey bands. They've got songs about everything from the penalty box to the fifth hole; hockey is in every lyric and every chord. As for the electronically inclined indie-rock duo Hockey (who at one time hailed from Portland, Oregon, but moved to New York when the getting got good), the appreciation for the sport stops at their name. And, while I guess they're fine as a band—a little bland for my tastes, and the intro of "Explorer" sounds a whole lot like "Please Don't Go Girl" by New Kids on the Block—it is kind of insulting to name your band after one of the toughest, most passionate, and greatest sports that has ever existed and then sound like that. They should call themselves Croquet. MEGAN SELING
Get the best of the Mercury each week in your inbox!