Aug. 28

Wet behind the ears

This is a literally cool cause — Slabtown hosts its annual Water for the Homeless Gods benefit, and will take cash donations and/or bottled water to distribute to the homeless this weekend, purportedly the hottest of the year. This rockin’ show features chunky riff-meisters The Cut 45, punk rockers The Settlements, as well as heavy punksters Phantom Family. That’s right, you can rock out with your cool friends and quench the thirst of someone down on their luck. What’s not to like?

The Cut 45, The Settlements, Phantom Family, 9 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 28, Slabtown, 1033 N.W. 16th Ave. $5. Info: 971-229-1455,

Aug. 29

Pasta and ponchos

Living in uber-hip Portland, it’s easy to forget this town was once part of the Wild West, as untamed and free as a college grad on Friday night who just found out her student loans have been forgiven. But Federale has not forgotten, putting out three records’ worth of primarily instrumental sonicscapes inspired by spaghetti Westerns, rock ‘n’ roll, country and western, and classical music. To listen to Federale is to roll into town at high noon just as Gary Cooper decides a man’s got to do what a man’s got to do.

Their latest album, “The Blood Flowed Like Wine,” features vocal contributions from Alex Maas of the Black Angels as well as KP Thomas of Los Angeles’ Spindrift. The record also includes strings played by Portland’s 45th Parallel Ensemble, and members of the Oregon Symphony provide flute, French horn and oboe. Richmond Fontaine’s Paul Brainard provides pedal steel guitar as well for a record that evokes that moment right before anyone had any reason to remember the Alamo.

Federale, 1939 Ensemble, Donovan Breakwater, 9 p.m. Friday, Aug. 29, Dante’s, 350 W. Burnside St. $10. Info: 503-345-7892,

They’ll take you there

The English Beat’s hard-driving but friendly mix of ska, reggae, rock and soul have made them one of the most consistently dance-friendly acts on the planet. Led by guitarist-singer Dave Wakeling, the band always draws a good crowd in Portland, mixing its hits like “Save It For Later” and “Mirror in the Bathroom” with covers of such tunes as “I’ll Take You There,” leaving the audience sweaty and happily exhausted from a night of skanking.

The English Beat, DJ Dubmatix, 9 p.m. Friday, Aug. 29, Wonder Ballroom, 128 N.E. Russell St. $20 in advance, $23 at the door. Info: 503-284-8686,

Aug. 30

You’ll break out in hives

She Keeps Bees, Brooklyn, N.Y.’s Jessica Larrabee on guitar and alto vocals and Andy LaPlant on drums, is dreamy, bluesy, folkish, a bit grungy and expansive, creating ballads that are just right for that moment you realize your date stood you up and you’re actually relieved because you’d rather drink alone. Or pray alone. Sometimes compared to PJ Harvey or Patti Smith, She Keeps Bees evokes many moods, from heroic to healing. It’s best to let them grow on you, as they’re not for the casual listener, but more geared to the eventual devotee.

She Keeps Bees, Shilpa Ray, 8 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 30, Hawthorne Theatre, 1507 S.E. 39th Ave. $8 in advance, $10 at the door. 21 and older. Info: 503-233-1700,

Sept. 5

Freddy said

Portland’s Freddy Trujillo is a singer/songwriter/bassist who hails from Simi Valley, Calif., and grew up in a musical family that includes his dad, Fred Sr., who played in The Beethovens, an all-Chicano garage-rock-beat combo of the mid-1960s. Meanwhile, Sister A’me Loraine scored two top 10 dance hits in the early 90s. Freddy is no slouch musically, having played with Pat Smear of Nirvana and the Germs, as well as several other L.A. punk/alternative acts. His debut album, “Hawks & Highways,” interwove his Native American and Chicano experiences in rock ‘n’ roll, and he’s recently played with Richmond Fontaine and Fernando as well.

His latest record, “Amexica,” is well-written, ambitious and eclectic, featuring rock, blues, Mexican and soul tunes and dwells on his life as a Mexican-American and a family man. Guests on the record include his father, sister and his nephew Casper Indrizzo, himself the frontman of psych-rockers Fever The Ghost.

Fernando Y Los Cochinos, Freddy Trujillo, KBs, 9 p.m. Friday, Sept. 5, Secret Society Ballroom, 116 N.E. Russell St. $15. Info: 503-493-3600,

Contract Publishing

Go to top
Template by JoomlaShine