There's a reason why this Portland band's name invokes images of high school students standing on desks saluting Robin Williams: Both Oh Captain, My Captain and "Dead Poet's Society" share a strong sense of melodrama. Vocalist Jesse Bettis' evokes that same deep and semi-monotone voice as Pedro the Lion's David Bazan which means all the band's lyrics sound emotionally charged, no matter the subject matter. Layer those vocals with metal-influenced guitars, occasional violin and some subtle background "ooohs," and OCMC sounds like a Pacific Northwest-version of Queen without Freddy Mercurys flamboyant outfits. And while it's possible for the theatrical rock on the band's debut full-length, 2007's Recklessly She Split the Sea, to seem a little over the top, more often that not, it feels like an authentic homage to music of the 1960s and 70s. Back then, "Bohemian Rhapsody" was no joke: It was a triumph.
Fri., Dec. 26, 9 p.m., 2008