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Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Tonight in Music: Michael Nesmith, Ty Dolla Sign, Lo-Fang

Posted by Ned Lannamann on Wed, May 7, 2014 at 12:34 PM


MICHAEL NESMITH
(Aladdin Theater, 3017 SE Milwaukie) Last year, the Monkees' Michael Nesmith rolled through town with a show that explored his weird, wild, wonderfully idiosyncratic solo career. Papa Nez returns, and the master songwriter will once again play highlights from his bursting songbook, and possibly a Monkees gem or two. NED LANNAMANN Also see All-Ages Action!


TY DOLLA SIGN, JOE MOSES, MILA J
(Peter's Room at the Roseland, 8 NW 6th) Ty Dolla Sign isn't a rapper, per se, but he comes from that world. A stoney crooner from LA, Ty offers melodic hooks and smoothness to the latest wave of West Coast rap, built upon DJ Mustard's skeletal, booming minimalism and YG's well-trod gangsterism. Like Nate Dogg to Snoop and Dre, Dolla Sign offers a counterpoint to YG and Mustard. To be sure, these are simply convenient touchstones; Ty and his peers offer nothing nearly as groundbreaking or well rounded as their forefathers. Still, there's something interesting happening here. And with YG's recent "My Krazy Life" breaking through nationally, one can only expect Dolla Sign's major-label debut full-length will soon follow suit. But for Ty, much like Nate Dogg, the question remains: Is he better off helming his own record, or giving lift to others? ANDREW R TONRY


LO-FANG, KATE BERLANT
(Doug Fir, 830 E Burnside) On first listen to Lo-Fang, I was curious. I heard cello, banjo, and violin, produced so clearly and smoothly that the songs slipped down my ears like butter. He hooked me with a sweet tenor voice that enunciates lyrics so crisply, I just wish they were worth listening to. Mr. Fang (AKA Matthew Hemerlein) is classically trained, and plays all of the instruments on his album Blue Film, but not once does his competent virtuosity yield anything interesting. Lo-Fang might resonate with some; his sound will either remind you of that summer you spent at the lake when you got your heart broken, or you'll get so bored and cheesed out that you'll need to listen to Doggystyle just to cleanse your palate. ROSE FINN


DEAD GURUS, MILLION BRAZILIANS, HOLLOW SIDEWALKS, MONA LISA OVERDRIVE
(Alhambra Theatre, 4811 SE Hawthorne) Taking after their chief influence—British psych heads Spacemen 3—Minneapolis' Dead Gurus aim to send listeners into a trance by way of minimalist, repetitive drumming, guitars that sound like they're gushing out multi-colored liquids as they choogle forward, and vocals lost in the Oort Cloud. It's a very familiar formula, but like any good drug, once you've had that initial taste, you'll want more and more. Joining them are local freaksters Million Brazilians, a combo that grooves, dips, and dives with the goal of becoming heirs apparent to space-jazz pioneers Sun Ra's Arkestra. ROBERT HAM


ERIK ANARCHY, FLUID SPILL, CHRONICLES OF BAD BUTCH, GOD BLESS AMERICA, FERAL DROLLERY
(Slabtown, 1033 NW 16th) Erik Anarchy is a brilliantly eccentric local punk treasure. He plays countless shows a month. His "band" typically consists of just him and an electric guitar, and he sings in a halfheartedly affected British accent. He has a song called "Fuck the OLCC" (amen!). He lists GG Allin as an influence on Facebook, ordinarily an indefensible transgression, but I'm willing to turn the other cheek—he's just that endearing. MORGAN TROPER

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