The Short List: This Week's Recommended Shows

From Gillian Welch to Memory Tapes.

Gillian Welch/Wednesday, July 13

For the current flock of Depression-fetishizing Seattle folkies who've been understandably branded as lacking authenticity, we offer Exhibit A in your defense: Gillian Welch. Reared in Los Angeles by a pair of Hollywood screenwriters, Welch attended college in Santa Cruz and Boston before heading to Nashville in an effort to ground herself in the Southern roots music she'd come to love. That was 20 years ago. Since then, Welch has weathered critical cries of poseurism en route to becoming one of the most respected folk/bluegrass/country artists on the planet. No popular American musician evokes Appalachia so coherently in her compositions; far from tilting at windmills, if there's a charge to be brought against Welch, it's that she's too faithful to her corncob-pipe-smokin', moonshine-runnin', string-pickin' forerunners. On the heels of Seattle stops by fellow twang-time goddesses Lucinda Williams and Alison Krauss, Welch is touring behind The Harrow & the Harvest, her first studio album in eight years. Moore Theatre, 1932 Second Ave., 467-5510. 8 p.m. $30. All ages. MIKE SEELY

Ky-Mani Marley/Wednesday, July 13

Ky-Mani Marley isn't Bob Marley's most famous son. In fact, he's not even among the top three— Ziggy, Damian, and Stephen take those honors. But the reggae legend's 10th-born certainly has his old man's blood, even if he doesn't follow in the family's reggae footsteps. Opting for hip-hop and dance-hall stylings shaped by an inner-city Miami childhood, he has no close musical ties with his half-siblings, and doesn't attract reggae vets waving the elder Marley's flag. Instead he treads the path of a street soldier, with a flow and delivery to match. So while he's not the one to carry on his father's legacy, you have to give him credit for stepping outside the family footsteps. With Gramps Morgan, Kore Ionz. Nectar, 412 N. 36th St., 632-2020. 8 p.m. $25. NICK FELDMAN

Extreme Animals/Thursday, July 14

The first time I heard Extreme Animals was over a shitty desktop PC's speakers in a gloriously run-down punk house just north of the Greek houses on frat row. This was in 2003, before YouTube or Facebook or Soundcloud, and a friend had just turned me on to Paper Rad, a wonderfully low-tech, lowbrow digital-arts collective that's worked in pixels, HTML, and tacky animated gifs back long before any LOLcat-themed sweatshops got around to monetizing such things. Extreme Animals were and remain the collective's premiere musical front, a live duo working with distorted electronics, drum clatter, and willfully smeared vocals that act as the perfect sonic embodiment of Paper Rad's garish and playful visual noise. Opening are local duo Brain Fruit, who approach their experimental instrumental jams—on drums, electronics, and bass—with slightly more somber expressions. With Sam Rousso Soundsystem, Bankie Phones, WIIR. Electric Tea Garden, 1402 E. Pike St., 568-3972. 10 p.m. $6. ERIC GRANDY

Neema/Thursday, July 14-Friday, July 15

Two-night CD-release parties at Neumos seem to be all the rage these days—Blue Scholars did it, Shabazz Palaces did it, and The Physics are about to do two shows in one night for theirs. And to celebrate the release of his fourth record, Black Roses, Neema, aka Mr. 10K (a reference to his 10,000 records sold, though according to Twitter he's now claiming 40K), is throwing his name into the ring. Often leaning toward dark sounds and aggressive flows, the Strange Music affiliate doesn't have the best raps, but can claim an untouchable work ethic and a great eye for supporting talent (as evidenced by his shows' lineups: His first night includes Bay Area hyphy godfather Mistah F.A.B.). With Rockwell Powers, Cash Clepto, Lace Cadence, Latin Rose. Neumos, 925 E. Pike St., 709-9442. 8 p.m. $12 each or $20 for both. All ages Thursday. NICK FELDMAN

WaMü/Thursday, July 14

No relation to the imploded banking behemoth whose name still weirdly adorns the exhibition hall attached to Qwest Field (although I guess Qwest isn't a thing anymore either, so there), Seattle band WaMü—pronounced like the wah-wah pedal plus the lost continent—is the hell-raising, free-form skronk-fest of guitarist Kaz Nomura of PWRFL Power, violinist Eric Ostrowski of Noggin, saxophonist Brittnie Fuller, and drummer Garrett Kelly and vocalist Rachel LeBlanc of My Printer Broke. This is a group deeply steeped in Seattle's experimental and DIY music scenes, and it shows in just how brazenly they push their wanton racket. The sax bleats, the violin shivers, the guitar shreds, the drums rumble, and LeBlanc moans—it's an abrasive sonic morass out of which arises some surprisingly head-banging grooves. Also, sometimes Kaz will do somersaults while playing guitar. WaMü: Too weird to fail. With So Pitted, Lovely Bad Things, Total Shit. Funhouse, 206 Fifth Ave. N., 374-8400. 9:30 p.m. $5. ERIC GRANDY

The Avett Brothers/Friday, July 15

Drifting from their tendency to release an album a year, The Avett Brothers have been hard at work on the follow-up to the band's 2009 major-label debut, I and Love and You. Rick Rubin is back to guide the project, and the Concord, N.C., threesome already has 24 songs recorded. Brothers Scott and Seth Avett on banjo and guitar and standup bassist Bob Crawford have been in the studio since early 2011, though they managed to get a little attention on the side with a February performance at the 53rd Grammy Awards alongside Mumford & Sons and Bob Dylan. Combining bluegrass and country with pop and punk, the three hope to expand on their past success and release a new album that is both well-crafted and mature. With Jessica Lea Mayfield. Everett Events Center, 2000 Hewitt Ave., Everett, 425-322-2645. 7:30 p.m. $35 adv./$40 DOS. All ages. JOE WILLIAMS

Chiodos/Friday, July 15

Playing alongside headliner Breathe Carolina on the "Scream It Like You Mean It" tour, post-hardcore band Chiodos battled a devastating lineup change in 2009 when singer and frontman Craig Owens was "let go" from his duties. The band rebuilt with singer Brandon Bolmer, formerly of Yesterdays Rising, and released Illuminaudio in 2010, the follow-up to 2007's Bone Palace Ballet, which debuted at #5 on the Billboard 200 chart. Expanding on the keyboard-driven mega-force featured on the band's 2005 debut All's Well That Ends Well, Illuminaudio picks up where Owens left off, boasting the same layered harmonies and bellowing screams that made the band a staple of the genre. Illuminaudio is also the debut album of drummer Tanner Wayne, formerly of Scary Kids Scaring Kids. With Breathe Carolina, I See Stars, The Color Morale, Tek-One, The Air I Breathe. El Corazon, 109 Eastlake Ave. E., 381-3094. 5:45 p.m. $16. All ages. JOE WILLIAMS

Strong Killings/Friday, July 15

Often when a young punk band takes eons to finish their debut, the immediate concern is that they've overthought things and are at risk of self-neutering. Blessedly, Strong Killings' balls are firmly intact on their self-titled debut (Don't Stop Believin' Records), which drops this week. Bassist and vocalist Carlos Alberta Lopez possesses a messy, cantankerous charm that will please fans of brash acts like Mclusky or Black Lips, and the occasional cameo by Champagne Champagne MC Pearl Dragon provides a welcome foil to it. The presence on the bill of like-minded troublemakers Hounds of the Wild Hunt in the tiny confines of the JewelBox Theater makes tonight the perfect opportunity to celebrate the birth of their long-overdue baby. JewelBox/Rendezvous, 2322 Second Ave., 441-5823. 10 p.m. $5. HANNAH LEVIN

David Bazan & Band/Saturday, July 16

While 2009's Curse Your Branches made an immediate impact with its introspective, crisis-of-faith subject matter, Dave Bazan's sub-sequent release, Strange Negotiations, offers a slow-burning, and arguably more nuanced and spiritual, evisceration of the author's external world. The extensive period Bazan spent touring the country in support of Branches gave him time to ponder the way people navigate the universe without considering their impact. His conclusion, essentially, is that we all need to exercise better manners— but don't mistake him for an etiquette evangelist. Bazan remains a fearless writer and performer who spares nothing and no one—not even himself. With Quasi, Rocky Votolato. Showbox at the Market, 1426 First Ave., 628-3151. 8 p.m. $15 adv./$17 DOS. HANNAH LEVIN

KUBE 93 Summer Jam/Saturday, July 16

No summer is truly complete without a ginormous music festival under one's belt, and KUBE 93's Summer Jam is likely the best place in Seattle to throw one's hands in the air and wave them in a manner that refrains from caring. Summer Jam's alumni list is a veritable who's-who of commercially viable hip-hop, and this year's lineup (featuring repeat visitors Ludacris, T-Pain, and Pitbull, among others) is no exception. If you're in the mood for tons of hit beats amped up through a massive, booming system (as well as for some of the finest people-watching greater King County has to offer), Summer Jam is a fantastic one-stop shop for your summer-festival needs. Oh, and bring some snacks for the ride home; getting out of the White River parking lot will probably take as long as the show did. With Jeremih, B.o.B., New Boyz, Big K.R.I.T. White River Amphitheatre, 40601 Auburn-Enumclaw Rd., Auburn, 360-802-1469. 12:30 p.m. $35.50–$91. All ages. GREGORY FRANKLIN

Gardens & Villa/Tuesday, July 19

Gardens & Villa is a Santa Barbara, Calif., quintet that makes shimmering synth-pop tunes; as an added quirk, frontman Chris Lynch will occasionally bring out his flute and toot a few bars. The band's eponymous debut album was produced by Richard Swift and released on Secretly Canadian just last week. The songs are tagged with hippie-druggy titles like "Chemtrails," "Neon Dove," and "Star Fire Power," and accordingly play out like lush and spacey dreamscapes, atop which Lynch's fluid, swelling vocals float like a summer breeze over blue ocean waves. In particular, Gardens & Villa's luxurious first single, "Black Hills," does a perfect job of evoking dusky, blurry evenings on the beach with a bonfire, some friends, and a good joint. With Generationals, the Soft Hills. Tractor Tavern, 5213 Ballard Ave. N.W., 789-3599. 9 p.m. $10. ERIN K. THOMPSON

Memory Tapes/Tuesday, July 19

If we're talking ideal summer listening, it doesn't get much better than Seek Magic, the idyllic and evocative 2009 debut LP from New Jersey instrumentalist/vocalist/producer Dayve Hawk, alias Memory Tapes. Hawk's follow-up is the just-released Player Piano; while the songs of Seek Magic easily, congruously flow together, Player Piano is more a collection of several different sonic and tonal experiments. Hawk is said to have been influenced by "psychedelic girl groups" for this record, and songs like "Sun Hits" and "Wait in the Dark" are indeed perky and cheery. But others are downright gloomy ("Yes I Know"); still others are just weird ("Humming," which really is just a few synths humming). It's a somewhat disjointed album, but there's something to be said about refusing to do the same things twice, and Player Piano ends up being a curiously fresh and interesting listen. With Sleep Over. Chop Suey, 1325 E. Madison St., 324-8000. 8 p.m. $10 adv./$12 DOS. ERIN K. THOMPSON

 
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