This Week's Recommended Shows

Talib Kweli, Pete Yorn, Dodos, and more.

Crosby & Nash/Wednesday, March 30

The convergence of Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young has historically brought out some of the worst in each of those enormous talents, both personally and musically. But when separated from the pack, two of those guys—David Crosby and Graham Nash—actually make each other shine. Both men have strong songwriting skills and sweet, crystalline voices that blend gracefully and create a breezy, high-altitude harmonic atmosphere. While they can veer toward the sappy in some of their more political and environmental songs, they are at their best when they turn inward, evoking an elegant melancholy and introspective regret, the kind middle-aged men are much better at conveying than the youngsters Crosby and Nash were in their heyday. WaMu Theater, 800 Occidental Ave. S., 381-7555. 8 p.m. $40–$60. All ages. BRIAN J. BARR Also see Q&A.

Talib Kweli/Wednesday, March 30

Go to Google and type in "Talib Kweli" and "underappreciated" and see what you get. Over 700,000 results. While debates over whether an artist has received his due are great fodder for message boards and nerd-lists, they distract from the work itself. Kweli has been churning out fairly consistent records for more than a decade. His ninth and latest, Gutter Rainbows, is built on Kweli's quick, punctuated flow and learned, consciousness-raising rhymes. Though he once flirted with the mainstream, Gutter Rainbows finds Kweli going truly indie—it was produced and channeled completely outside the commercial recording industry, a hard-core move that still landed him a #1 slot on iTunes and a #29 spot on Billboard. That said, I wouldn't cry too hard for Kweli—he's not Jay-Z or 50 Cent, and that's OK with him. With Grynch. Showbox at the Market, 1426 First Ave., 628-3151. 8 p.m. $20 adv./$25 DOS. All ages. BRIAN J. BARR

Tit Pig/Wednesday, March 30

Thanks to the much-hyped ascendancy of Odd Future at SXSW, I've been reading a lot of think pieces this past week about offensive art and our responsibilities toward listeners and consumers. To which Tit Pig, Seattle's most willfully confrontational new band, would presumably say "Shut the fuck up, pussy." Onstage, it's hard to make out the particulars of frontman Sean "Prawn" Evoy's screaming hardcore rants, but that might be for the best. Evoy, often shirtless and baring a grotesque chest tattoo, sings about anything from gay cruising to Nazi war criminals, and you might not actually want to know where his sympathies lie on such subjects. Easier to understand are the fast riffing and aggro rhythms of his backing band, which, along with Evoy's deadpan incitements to violence between songs, have been known to stir up a most irresponsible mosh pit. With moody Seattle synth rockers Red Liquid. With Unstoppable Death Machine, the Downstrokes. Comet Tavern, 922 E. Pike St., 323-9853. 9 p.m. $7. ERIC GRANDY

Milagres/Thursday, March 31

Kill Rock Stars' latest signees' fluent indie-pop is already a favorite in their native New York, thanks to the band's self-released debut, last year's Seven Summits. Milagres is already at work on that album's follow-up, Glowing Mouth, due out in September. The single of the same name has already been released, and it's absolutely luminous. Frontman Kyle Wilson's vocals are liquid-smooth; his falsetto shimmers over the tune's pleading melody, buoyed by piping organs and moving synth lines. It's a rare and lovely kind of ambience, and if the remainder of the album is this beautifully measured and contemplative, we're in for something really special. With U.S.F., Tumble Dry. JewelBox/Rendezvous, 2322 Second Ave., 441-5823. 10 p.m. $6. ERIN K. THOMPSON

Yellow Ostrich/Thursday, March 31

Alex Schaaf started recording music on his own as Yellow Ostrich in his Wisconsin dorm room; last summer he relocated to Brooklyn and recruited former members of We Are Scientists and Beirut to play in his band. Yellow Ostrich's new full-length, The Mistress, still sounds very much like a homegrown affair—clattering drums, disheveled, lo-fi guitars, and Schaaf's raw, wailing vocals. The primitive sounds work just so with the music's simple melodies, especially after factoring in the youthful, imaginative quirks of Schaaf's songwriting—The Mistress' best song is about riding into the ocean on a whale's back; another is titled "Hahahaohhoho" and goes pretty much like that; another contains just two sweetly short lines—"I think you are great/I think you are great!" With Say Hi, Blair. Crocodile, 2200 Second Ave., 441-7416. 8 p.m. $12. ERIN K. THOMPSON

Smooth Sailing/Friday, April 1

It's a crying shame that tonight, local art-metal sextet Smooth Sailing must compete against the staggering lineup that is the Metalliance Tour at El Corazon. Having one's CD-release party fall on the same evening that St. Vitus, Helmet, Red Fang, and Crowbar (among others) roll into town must be a shade heartbreaking, but if these kids truly live up to their potential, the night they had to go toe-to-toe with their formidable predecessors will be but a humorous footnote. XOXO is hands-down one of the best local metal releases of 2011: a challenging, beautiful sprawl of intensely technical metal that hits the ears like a satanic symphony penned by Slint and conducted by Godspeed! You Black Emperor. With Anadonia, Into the Storm, Oven Rake. Sunset Tavern, 5433 Ballard Ave. N.W., 784-4880. 10 p.m. $8. HANNAH LEVIN

Viper Creek Club/Friday, April 1

Viperlust is the new remix album from Seattle indie electro duo Viper Creek Club, collecting their takes on such local (mostly hip-hop) acts as Blue Scholars, Mad Rad, Hi-Life Soundsystem, and others. VCC's remixes are crisp and clean, gliding from 4/4 drum kicks and boom-bap to loping, Neptunes-derived hand percussion, and from piano chords and soft, gauzy pads to elastic, buzzing, zigzagging synthesizer arpeggios. Tonight they'll perform their remixes live with the featured artists, who may also freestyle over some new, unreleased VCC originals. Opening the show are Metal Chocolates, the OC Notes/Rik Rude combo that's pushing Seattle hip-hop in some of the weirdest, most promising directions this side of Shabazz Palaces, and Truckasaurus, the town's analog electro titans. Hashtag: SWAG. With DJ Darwin, DJ 100Proof. Neumos, 925 E. Pike St., 709-9467. 8 p.m. $10. ERIC GRANDY

Pete Yorn/Friday, April 1

While it's been all the rage of late to take a beloved record on the road, not many of the classics being revisited are barely a decade old. But such is the case with Pete Yorn's 2001 debut musicforthemorningafter, released while rap-rock was getting kicked around by skinny punks in the Vines, the Hives, the Strokes, and the White Stripes. Yorn's straightforward rock wasn't as aggressive as these Bizkit-slayers, but was no less refreshing and isn't nearly as placid as so much of today's smooth-indie fare. Lead singles "Life on a Chain" and "Strange Condition" are just as drivable as they were pre-9/11, and closing cut "Simonize" is no less haunting. Yorn has yet to make a blockbuster record. But he can go to bed every night knowing he made a classic. With Ben Kweller. Showbox SoDo, 1700 First Ave. S., 628-3151. 7 p.m. $25 adv./$28 DOS. All ages. CHRIS KORNELIS

Coolout's 20th Anniversary/Saturday, April 2

Georgio Brown, founder of Coolout TV (formerly known as The Coolout Network), which ran on public access before switching to webisodes in 2007, is now celebrating his 20th year filming local rap shows, interviewing artists, and being a general man-about-town. In honor of the occasion, Brown is throwing a party at the Crocodile. Isiah Anderson and DJ Rocphella will host the event, to include "surprise performances by Northwest hip-hop & R&B stars" and a screening of some vintage Coolout footage from the halcyon days of Emerald City hip-hop. Crocodile, 2200 Second Ave., 441-7416. 9 p.m. $10. KEEGAN HAMILTON

Pudding/Saturday, April 2

Pudding is a Northeast Seattle band consisting of a Catholic-schooled 12-year-old guitarist and his theater-dork dad on drums and vocals. They are playing a free all-ages show at an ice-cream parlor on Saturday. Again, the name of the band is Pudding, and it's fronted by a 12-year-old. So it might surprise you to learn that Pudding plays heavy rock. "Not Your Name" is indistinguishable from vintage Soundgarden, with Joe Mele's lead vocals worlds removed from his high-school turn as Tevye in Fiddler on the Roof or as a member of the Coats, an a cappella group which changed its name from the Trenchcoats after the Columbine massacre. Meanwhile, young Joey Mele raises suspicions about whether he was sired by a Van Halen instead of his namesake father. Best of all, Full Tilt sells beer alongside its designer ice cream, which means one thing, and it's the best thing in the world: beer floats! With David Vlasaty. Full Tilt Ice Cream, 5041 Rainier Ave. S., 226-2740. 9 p.m. Free. All ages. MIKE SEELY

Crooked I/Sunday, April 3

Contrary to popular belief, Crooked I didn't just burst onto the scene a few years ago—though as of late the Long Beach, Calif., rapper has garnered plenty of publicity for his success with Interscope-signed supergroup Slaughterhouse. In reality, it took more than a decade of mixtapes, industry politics, and record deals (including stints on Virgin's now-defunct Noo Trybe imprint and Suge Knight's notorious Death Row Records) for the MC to put out a proper project of his own. But regardless of the medium, his bare-knuckle bars over hard-hitting snares get across a very clear point: "Me and you ain't the same, but you knew that." Crooked I's place in the West Coast hip-hop canon may not be solidified, but it's well on its way. With Jay Barz, Havi Blaze, DJ Swervewon. Nectar, 412 N. 36th St., 632-2020. 8 p.m. $12. NICK FELDMAN

Dodos/Monday, April 4

San Francisco's urban indie-folk scene, which has given us bands like Two Gallants and the Dodos, offers twinges of twang, seemingly simple melodies, and an ear for the sweet, occasionally disjointed hook. What the Dodos do well, and what makes them so insanely listenable, is to present this sort of thing with a pleasing blend of varied, unpredictable rhythms propelled by Logan Kroeber's off-the-hook drumming. Given that their latest, No Color, is full of hummable sonic treasures and is being released at a time when their genre is blowing up (in addition to garnering major SXSW buzz), the Dodos could be segueing into mainstream music consciousness very soon. With Reading Rainbow. Neumos, 925 E. Pike St., 709-9467. 8 p.m. $15. MA'CHELL DUMA LAVASSAR

 
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