Wednesday, Jan. 5
Ten years into the game, Austin's Gourds still make really reliable—and, occasionally, quite wonderfully cynical—country-rock records that can, and should, be played along with Wilco, The Band, and Whiskeytown. Tractor Tavern, 9 p.m. $15. Also Thurs., Jan. 6.
Members Only: J. Clark + DJ Red Leather Chapstick + DJ Fucking in the Streets
Capitol Hill already has two high-profile Britpop nights on Thursday (at the Bad Juju and Re-bar), so why not provide the common people a cheap, hip alternative the day before? Members of Pretty Girls Make Graves and Hint Hint will man the stacks, even dropping some electroclash to offset the good stuff. Baltic Room, 9 p.m. $1 before midnight/$3
Thursday, Jan. 6
The Charity Stripe
The Charity Stripe's Islands is full of whispery indie rock made by people unafraid to toss in a jagged barb here and there. The local trio's live show is likely to be one of those you get easily sucked in to. Crocodile Cafe, 9 p.m. $6
Friday, Jan. 7
Blue Sky Mile
The generally unsung, smartass indie-pop locals are packing it in after nearly four years, leaving behind an accessible self-titled EP and last year's exceptional Initial full-length, Sands Once Seas. Kane Hodder, the Cops, and Patrol will also be on hand for the Viking funeral. Paradox Theatre, 1401 N.W. Leary Way, 8 p.m. $7
Cross-Pollination: Tableland + Syphilis Sauna
Here's a pretty damn brilliant improv concept: A local band that ideally doesn't skew toward electronica plays a live set, which a local electronic artist remixes on the spot, employing only the sound that the band just created. Tonight, experimentalist Patrick Urn's solo project Syphilis Sauna reimagines the introspective instrumental rock of Tableland. Living Room, 4301 Fremont Ave. N., 7:30 p.m. $5
Wayne Horvitz with Tari Nelson-Zagar, Tom Swafford, and Nathan Levine
The hardest working keyboardist in Seattle gets down with violinists Nelson-Zagar and Swafford and bassist Lavine. Should be interesting, might be terrific. Gallery 1412, 8 p.m. $5–15
Once a principal member of the Walkabouts, Carla Togerson has moved on to a solo career that envelops her interest in cinematic sound, varied world influences (but not in that awful "world music" way), and a true gift of language. Sunset Tavern, 7 p.m. $7
Maktub's vocalist and Seattle music's most active gadfly gets comfortable in a comfortable room. What will he bring this time? One way to find out, eh? Triple Door, 8 p.m. $15
Saturday, Jan. 8
At the Spine
Michael Toschi is the pixie-pop mastermind behind local rock outfit At the Spine. His eccentricity extends to the liner notes of 2003's The Curriculum Is Never Neutral, which details not only specific tunings and capo placements, but provides brief contextual settings for each track. The hipster DJ-baiting "Power Broker" is a major standout. EMP Liquid Lounge, 10 p.m.
Pianist Gust Burns, saxophonist Gregory Reynolds, and drummer Greg Campbell create out jazz that stays adventurous without feeling overly willful. Gallery 1412, 8 p.m. $5–15
The legendary drummer leads a quintet through a daunting back catalog that stretches back more decades than you've probably been alive. Accompanying him are Eric Person on alto sax, Evan Schwam on tenor sax, Cory DeNigris on guitar, and bassist Paul Ramsey. Triple Door, 7:30 p.m. and 10 p.m. $23 Also Sunday, Jan. 9, at 7:30 p.m.
Sunday, Jan. 9
That a man who looks like a Green Bay Packers cornerback has produced some of the blandest adult-contempo treacle this side of Kenny G really boggles the mind. But it's true: Cross rose to prominence on the, um, "strength" of the 1980 single "Sailing," then won an Oscar for "Arthur's Theme," co-written with Burt Bacharach. Bottom line: pure and utter Cheez Whiz. Skagit Valley Casino, 5984 N. Darrk Ln., Bow, 206-628-0888, 4 p.m. and 7 p.m. $30
Tuesday, Jan. 11
Roy Haynes Quartet
What's with the Triple Door booking all these great jazz drummers lately? Lucky us. Haynes, 79, leads a quartet featuring reeds player Marcus Strickland, pianist Martin Bejerano, and John Sullivan on bass. Triple Door, 7:30 p.m. $35
Maynard Ferguson and His Big Bop Nouveau Band
The trumpet legend leads a large ensemble that includes trumpeters Patrick Hession, Ken Edwards, and Keith Faila, trombonist Reggie Watkins, sax players Doug Stone and Julio Monterrey, pianist Ji Young Lee, bassist Eun Chang Choi, and drummer Stockton Helbing. Dimitriou's Jazz Alley, 7:30 p.m. $19.50–$23.50
Funeral for a Friend
Ferret Records is all about cute little boys with black dye jobs and Chuck Taylors playing Oscar the Grouch–style heartcore. FfaF is no exception, garnering inexplicable hype in the U.K. for getting all growly and shreddin' in the verse, then all Bambi in the chorus. Groundbreaking stuff, guys. Studio Seven, 7 p.m. $10 adv.