This Week in the Mercury

Dungeon Masters


Dungeon Masters

Visigoth Unleashes the Power of Metal

Notes from the Underground


Notes from the Underground

Michaelangelo Matos' Chronicle of EDM Is Massive Indeed


Friday, October 3, 2014

Sunday: The Ryan Adams We Need

Posted by Ned Lannamann on Fri, Oct 3, 2014 at 12:44 PM

  • Doll by Allison Hoffman
RYAN ADAMS w/Amy Miller; Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall, 1037 SW Broadway, Sun Oct 5, 8 pm, $37.50-65, tickets

Ryan Adams' last solo Portland show was a disaster.

The performance took place at the Roseland on April 24, 2006, during the height of Adams' drug problems—he was addicted to heroin-and-cocaine speedballs, which are probably the worst thing you can get addicted to. He also was suffering, undiagnosed, from Ménière's disease, which made him dizzy and disoriented under bright stage lights. The show, to be frank, was an absolute shambles, as Adams struggled to complete a single song. He'd begin a number like "Dear Chicago" or "My Winding Wheel," and it would sound magnificent—really, magnificent—for a minute, but Adams would lose either the thread or his nerve, and trail off. He wandered into the wings between songs. He played gloomy, unheard material like "Everything Dies" on the piano. Eventually, things got so bad that Grateful Dead bassist Phil Lesh came out to salvage things, and the two did an aimless, pretty awful 45-minute jam to end the show.

It was a monumentally frustrating experience for me, a Ryan Adams defender. As long as eight years ago, Adams had earned a healthy share of detractors, but I was never one of them. I'd seen him live once before with his band the Pinkhearts, and it was brilliant—like, Exile on Main Street-era Stones brilliant.


Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Bands Playing at This Weekend's AKA Fest in Vancouver—REVEALED!

Posted by Ned Lannamann on Tue, Aug 19, 2014 at 12:21 PM

We've told you everything about the mysterious AKA festival, taking place this Saturday, August 23, at the "Burgundy Wildcat"—actually, the Vancouver Red Lion, which is right on the Columbia River. Well, we've told you everything except who's actually playing the thing. All 14 performing acts were veiled under aliases, but now, AKA's secrets can be revealed! Take a look at who'll be playing at a weird, nautical-themed hotel bar at the Vancouver Red Lion this Saturday night.
6:00 - DJ Stairway to Kevin = Kevin O'Connor (Talkdemonic)
7:00 - Quiche Richards = Bleach Blonde Dudes
7:30 - Thai Food = Typhoon
8:00 - Sexes = Genders
8:30 - Cornsword = The Lower 48
9:00 - Beard and Tanned Blazer = The Builders and the Butchers
9:30 - Nellypigs = Billygoat
10:00 - Ancient Enemies = Modern Kin
10:30 - Black Pussy = Black Pussy
11:00 - Kaylee Rob = Kevin Robinson
11:30 - Droney Mitchell = Kelli Schaefer
12:00 - Found Water = Lost Lander (duo)
12:30 - Modest Mouth = Magic Mouth
1:00 - DickPunch = Bitchslap
Pret-ty good bill. It all goes down Saturday at the Vancouver Red Lion's Quay Bar. Tickets here.

Monday, July 14, 2014

Here Is Your PDX Pop Now! Schedule

Posted by Ned Lannamann on Mon, Jul 14, 2014 at 10:50 AM

It's here! It's finally here!

PDX Pop Now! makes its very welcome return this weekend, in the form of three days of completely free, completely local, completely all-ages music. The fest kicks off this Friday, July 18 at 6 pm at AudioCinema, at 226 SE Madison (under the Hawthorne Bridge) and continues until midnight on Sunday, July 20. There are some new changes to the lineup; Illmaculate and Portland Cello Project had to drop out, but they've added Fur Coats, Myke Bogan, Landlines, Snowblind Traveler, and a fest-closing set from Minden. Check out the full schedule right here, and start planning your weekend now!

(Click the poster to make it bigger.)


Thursday, March 6, 2014

Anarchy in Little Beirut Release Show Rescheduled for Saturday

Posted by Ned Lannamann on Thu, Mar 6, 2014 at 3:35 PM

Hey, remember February 7? Those were the heady days of SNOWPACALYPSE Y2K14, when man and mongrel were laid to waste in a frozen hellscape of ice and frost. The release party/show for the local punk compilation Anarchy in Little Beirut was scheduled to occur that night at Ash Street, but needless to say it was canceled.

The show has been rescheduled for this Saturday, March 8, and here is the flawlessly written writeup that appeared in the paper, lightly amended:

(Ash Street Saloon, 225 SW Ash) In just under an hour, the new Anarchy in Little Beirut compilation CD crams 21 of Portland's brashest, snarliest, snappiest punk bands into a definitive snapshot of the current state of PDX punk. (Spoiler: The state is fast, loud, rip-snorting, and surprisingly diverse.) The tracklist runs the gamut from local legends to young upstarts—Monica Nelson and the Highgates, Vodka Wilson Overdrive, the Thornes, and the Ex-Girlfriends Club are just some of the many names on the back cover—and tonight 10 of those bands celebrate the CD's lurching, ear-damaging release into this world. Best of all, the $7 cover charge lands you a free copy of Anarchy in Little Beirut to take home. NED LANNAMANN

That's this Saturday, March 8 at Ash Street!


Thursday, November 7, 2013

Birdcloud ARE Playing in Portland on Saturday

Posted by Ned Lannamann on Thu, Nov 7, 2013 at 12:04 PM

Despite the image at right, Nashville duo Birdcloud makes filthy, funny country songs, although I reckon they're kind of evil in their own way. They were gonna play at the Alhambra Theatre on Saturday, opening for Vanessa Carlton, but Carlton cancelled a bunch of shows after some rather serious-sounding complications with her pregnancy. (Get well, Vanessa.) Birdcloud are making the trip up here anyway, playing a show at the (World Famous) Kenton Club this Saturday, November 9.

Matthew W. Sullivan wrote a piece on Birdcloud that I pulled from the paper at the last minute. But now that Birdcloud is definitely going to be here, you should read it. It's funny and great. Here's a sweet, sweet taste:

[Jasmin] Kaset and cohort Makenzie Green are taking a break during a rehearsal in their hometown of Nashville. Kaset tells me about a new shot they just made up inspired by their song "Hello, Commode." As best as I can tell from the picture they posted on Instagram, a "Hello, Commode" shooter consists of Bolthouse Farms Green Goodness (a blend of apple, mango, spinach, and about 17 other ingredients), vodka, and a packet of Emergen-C.

It didn't sit well with Green. "She can handle her shots, but the second it hit her throat, there was puke all over the linoleum," says Kaset.

There's more, including a story about their experience on America's Got Talent (they upset Heidi Klum and were booed by the crowd) and how their song "Savin' Myself for Jesus" got banned from YouTube.

Go read Matt's story, and then go see 'em on Saturday at the Kenton Club. In the meantime, here is one of many, many songs they've written about their pussies.

Friday, September 6, 2013

Charles Bradley Will Be at Everyday Music Tomorrow

Posted by Ned Lannamann on Fri, Sep 6, 2013 at 12:32 PM


Tomorrow night, soul singer extraordinaire Charles Bradley will perform at the Crystal Ballroom. Be sure to read Andrew R Tonry's piece about making a cross-country pilgrimage to see the man perform in a sweaty Denver club.

But check this out! Tomorrow (Sat Sept 7) at 5 pm, Bradley himself will be at the downtown Everyday Music (1313 W Burnside) to sign copies of his latest album, Victim of Love. So, go there before you cross the street to see his show at the Crystal that night.

Cassette Store Day Is a Thing

Posted by Ned Lannamann on Fri, Sep 6, 2013 at 11:08 AM


This Saturday, tapes and tape lovers have a day all their own: Move over, Record Store Day, because September 7 is Cassette Store Day.

Yes, this is a thing. It's not news that tapes have become a thing again in DIY music circles; they're a cheap and nostalgic alternative to expensive vinyl, and although that tape deck from your '87 Accord is long gone, underground bands and small labels are putting more and more new releases out on cassette. Portland is no exception.

Here's what's happening around town this Saturday for Cassette Store Day:

Beacon Sound (1465 NE Prescott) will be opening early on Saturday, and Peter Broderick will be there to sign copies of his 2008 debut solo album Float, which has just been reissued on cassette in a limited edition of 100 by Erased Tapes out of Berlin. He'll be there 10 am-2:30 pm, and Beacon Sound will have lots of other tapes available as well, including some Cassette Store Day exclusives.

Record Room (8 NE Killingsworth) is hosting a cassette fair and tape swap. Participating labels include Gnar Tapes, Pour le Corps Records, Kennel Jitters Recordings, Resurrection Records, Useless State Records, Curly Cassettes, and Cassingle and Loving It Records. It goes from 4-8 pm and is all ages; they recommend bring a mystery mixtape for the tape swap.

Music Millennium (3158 E Burnside) is also participating, and they'll have exclusive CDS releases from Efterklang, Mum, Twink, Suicidal Tendencies, Sentridoh, JJ Doom, Guided By Voices, Refrigerator, Xiu Xiu, Volcano Choir, Dolphinz, The Casket Girls s/t, Grape Soda, and Gold-Bears. They'll also have lots of other tapes for sale starting at $.99 and up, and the first 20 people in the door get a gift bag. That all happens 10 am-6 pm on Saturday.

Friday, August 30, 2013

Post SMMR BMMR Benefit Saturday @ Angelos

Posted by Andrew R Tonry on Fri, Aug 30, 2013 at 12:21 PM

Sweet little lineup Saturday night at Angelo's benefitting SMMR BMMR: Mean Jeans, The Bugs, Bi Marks & The Shivas. Also, welcome the Jeans back from their recent trip to Canada—some pretty great video from a show they played in Calgary two nights ago:

Friday, April 19, 2013

Your Handy Guide to Record Store Day

Posted by Ned Lannamann on Fri, Apr 19, 2013 at 10:38 AM


Tomorrow, April 20, is everyone's favorite holiday—no, not that one, Cheech. I'm talking about Record Store Day, the yearly Saturday set aside to celebrate your local brick-and-mortar record purveyor. Started a few short years ago, it's now become a sort of retail bonanza for the music industry, with even the major labels now tossing off exclusive vinyl "product" just for the day, but what's cool about RSD is that it reminds everyone not to take our excellent local record stores for granted. And it's an entire day to, essentially, celebrate vinyl.

To illustrate why vinyl is so great—apart from the obvious reasons—I would now like to show you what came inside my 1981 Prince album Controversy:

Continue reading »


Thursday, January 10, 2013

Our Guide to 2013's Big Ass Boombox—in Mixtape Form!

Posted by Rochelle Hunter on Thu, Jan 10, 2013 at 1:14 PM


Before going to any festival, I like to make a mix to listen to nonstop for a couple days to get in the zone. I imagine it’s something like this for professional athletes right before a big sports-ball match, as well. Big Ass Boombox is the first big PDX music event of the year, and if you missed its debut last year, get ready to show-hop. This festival is the perfect opportunity to finally get to see all those mid-level local bands (and a couple NW neighbors) you’ve been meaning to check out—the great thing is, even if you end up catching a set that’s not quite up your alley, you have a high chance of wandering a block or so to another stage and finding something that suits you, all in the time it takes a band to tune a guitar.

I’ve made a super unofficial Big Ass Boombox mix, featuring the bands I’m looking forward to seeing this year (with the bands' permission!), so make yourself a protein shake, peruse my mix, and start training for a weekend of marathon show-going.

Visit the Big Ass Boombox site for more information on venues, the 40 bands, and the many authors participating. Tracklist (and set times) after the jump!

Continue reading »

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Lost Lander's 8-Bit "Basin and Range" Tour Diary

Posted by Ned Lannamann on Wed, Nov 21, 2012 at 4:04 PM

While we gave brief mention to Friday's Typhoon/Laura Gibson/Lost Lander show at the Crystal Ballroom in this week's paper, I don't think I really got a chance to emphasize that this triple bill is just about perfection. Three of my absolute favorite local bands, all in one place. It doesn't get any better.

They've all been on tour together for the past couple weeks—called the "Basin and Range" tour—and the folks at Lost Lander have put together this awesome tour video for us. To quote them: "In a word: Epyx."

Lost Lander - 8 Bit "Basin and Range" Tour Diary from Handwoven Industries on Vimeo.

Lost Lander opens for Typhoon and Laura Gibson (and acts as Gibson's backing band) on Friday night, November 23 at the Crystal Ballroom. Make sure you've digested all that turkey and pie, because this is a downright perfect bill, Portland style.

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Star Bar Turns Two! Also, My Favorite Big Star Song.

Posted by Ned Lannamann on Wed, Sep 26, 2012 at 9:13 AM

Star Bar—the proud owners of our favorite Big Star-themed neon sign in town—turns two this Saturday, and although it's not old enough to drink, you are. They've quietly been putting on solid rock shows and DJ nights over the past couple years, but Saturday will be anything but quiet. They've put together a killer bill for this completely free celebration, and you'd have to have your head in the stars to miss it. Pierced Arrows headlines the show, and as Star Bar proprietor Josh Davis points out, "I know the Pierced Arrows play all the time, but never for free and rarely in a space as intimate as Star Bar." He's absolutely right, and this will rip. The Pity Fucks and the Ransom (the latest band from Charlie Nims) round out the live music roster, plus DJ Kelly H (formerly Burning Leather, currently Pierced Arrows and P.R.O.B.L.E.M.S.) will spin tunes. This sounds positively rocking, the kind of party that will outright ruin your Sunday. Can't wait.

In honor of that Star Bar neon sign turning two years old, and it still being the merry month of September, here is my favorite Big Star song, and possibly my favorite song in the world. I know it's not from #1 Record—that's the one with the classic neon sign on the cover—but goddamn, it's a good one.

Friday, August 24, 2012

Bunk Bar Block Party!

Posted by Ned Lannamann on Fri, Aug 24, 2012 at 3:26 PM

Sunday in Southeast is already going to be jam packed and crazy: There's the Hawthorne Street Fair and Sunday Parkways both happening simultaneously, and a little further in, Bunk Bar is hosting a block party to celebrate their second birthday. (Or as they cheerfully put it, "Bunk Bar drops a deuce!")

If you can get down there, Bunk's got a lot going on to make it worth your while: Music, beer, food, more. From the Facebook invite:

Come help celebrate Bunk Bar's 2 year Anniversary of not being sober. We're celebrating all afternoon and evening by blocking off SE Taylor St and having a block party with EAT SKULL, ONUINU and SUN ANGLE! We'll be partying with all of our friends and neighbors! We've got Water Avenue Coffee! We've got Boke Bowl! Bunk Truck will be there! DOUBLE MOUNTAIN's bringing a BEER TRUCK!
It starts at 2 pm and goes 'til 9, right outside Bunk Bar at SE Water and Taylor. I can't think of a better reason to party in the middle of the street.

Friday, July 6, 2012

Block Party Weekend!

Posted by Marjorie Skinner on Fri, Jul 6, 2012 at 1:59 PM

The first truly hot weekend of the year boasts one of the highlights of the summer: the third annual East End block party, where the long haired and black-clad faithful gather to bake under the sun, quenching themselves with beer. As tradition has come to dictate, the two-day lineup of bands is heavy on punk and metal, including sets from Redd Kross, Danava, Quintron, Lord Dying, Witch Mountain, Thrones, Nucular Aminals, and Sons of Huns. Come for the music and beer, and stay for the novelty of doing this in the parking lot instead of the basement.


Things kick off tomorrow at 1, so be sure to wake up in time and make yourself presentable.

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Can't Go to Sasquatch? Here's Portsquatch!

Posted by Lex Chase on Wed, May 23, 2012 at 12:01 PM

Hey there, music lovers, festival goers, and those too good to get out of the city this weekend. Have I got a treat for you! I have gone to Sasquatch multiple times, done it and done it well. Now at the precious age of 22, I'm just feeling too old* and broke for that shit. (RIP, college days.) But I realized there are a lot of bands playing the Gorge that are coming here this weekend as well. So many, in fact, that it could be its own goddamn festival. Now it is.

[Editor's note: 22? Boo friggin' hoo.]

So, ladies and gents, I give you Portsquatch, a full week of various shows on various sides of the river. You might say that's a smaller list than Sasquatch. Well, yeah, BUT with Portsquatch you are awarded the luxury of showering, fully stocked bars, cigarettes that DON'T cost $9 a pack, the ability to actually see the artist, not ruining your expensive Free People outfit or losing your Ray-Bans, and oh, YOU'RE IN THE CITY.

Take a look at our specially prepared Portsquatch lineup after the jump!

Continue reading »

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