Summer ending is really bittersweet, as always. This summer has been a strange one for me, but probably one of the best summers I’ve ever had. It is only fitting that I say farewell to summer with a handful of kickass shows. Here it is, the Zibby-approved guide to September show-going & beyond:
Saturday September 1, Fruit Bats & Pearly Gate Music at the Doug Fir
Fruit Bats have been on my list of bands-to-see for quite some time. And if you ask me, their unique blend of folk and pop is just the right thing to usher in a new season. The once-Chicago, now-Portland band hasn’t been touring much lately and they haven’t put out an album since last September’s Tripper which was a dreamy pop gem.
Opening for Fruit Bats is PEARLY GATE MUSIC, the ongoing project of Zach Tillman. Tillman has been dabbling in other things on and off, including playing bass for Portland’s own dream poppers Pure Bathing Culture. But Pearly Gate is less dreamy and more simple and stripped-down.
My heart is full of Tillman love these days.
Saturday September 8, Menomena, Deep Sea Diver, Brainstorm at Mississippi Studios
This is the latest in opbmusic’s PDXRX series in which they showcase local bands. They always seem to put together a really solid lineup. This show doubles as a MFNW party for Mississippi Studios, so there’ll be sweets and treats as well as tunes.
Honestly, everyone should go to this show for just two reasons. One, it is FREE. FREEEE!!!! Two, Menomena is playing, finally, after teasing us and flip-flopping on releasing a record and undoing their breakup without really getting back together. We’ve been through a lot with Menomena, and they are finally giving back to their city. The experimental crew are just plain fun which is no doubt what you can expect from this show (I mean guys seriously I am just sitting here in my PJs listening to Menomena and blogging and it is like a party by myself). And hey, the other bands aren’t half bad either!
Julia Holter, Pure Bathing Culture at The Old Church
Here’s one MFNW show I am really looking forward to: minimalist pop guru Julia Holter and Portland dream-pop dream-team Pure Bathing Culture.
Julia Holter takes music from groups like Grimes and Youth Lagoon and brings it down to earth, mixing childlike sounds and catchy beats. Her voice is terrific and haunting.
Pure Bathing Culture are quickly becoming my latest local obsession. These Portland transplants are all-around a joy to listen to. I wouldn’t miss a chance to see them (although they do play a lot around town, and this is one of their pricier shows).
Tuesday September 11, Bleeding Rainbow at the Doug Fir
Okay, I know I just said that Pure Bathing Culture was my latest local-obsession, which is true, but I am truly obsessed with Bleeding Rainbow. These folks are awesome. I’ve been fortunate enough to gain access to their album stream MONTHS before it comes out. Yeah Right was scheduled for October, but has been pushed to January. This is hardly fair, but in the mean time the band continues to produce 7-inches, and is touring. It is the next best thing, truly.
Bleeding Rainbow, formerly Reading Rainbow, are a throwback to classic garage punk. They are noisy, well produced, and all around fabulous. It is like if My Bloody Valentine were functioning in 2012 or if every other garage punk band didn’t suck. I am beyond excited for this show.
They’re touring with the band Eternal Summers, who, although less unique sounding, are worth a listen. They’re easy just like summer.
Thursday September 13, Grass Widow at Mississippi Studios
If you missed the kick-ass performance by Grass Widow at Lewis & Clark this past spring, you finally have another chance to see them. I’ve been waiting since that first show of theirs I saw ended to see Portland pop up in their tour dates.
This summer, the group released Internal Logic, a space-age exploration into garage rock, throwback riot-grrl and all around greatness. Internal Logic is one of my favorite albums of the year.
Last but not least, the two big shows I am going to this fall: Beach House and Animal Collective. The thought of seeing both these bands within two weeks of one another makes my poor little Maryland heart skip a beat. I’ve never seen either group perform live, and I’m glad I’m finally getting a chance!
Other notable acts coming through town in September that I may or may not go to/have conflicts with:
Father John Misty (don’t worry, I’m bussing up to Seattle to see him!)
Strand of Oaks, The Tallest Man on Earth
Typhoon (I might go to this just to hear a sneak peak at some new tunes)
Sallie Ford & The Sound Outside