Live This Weekend: Sir Mix-A-Lot, Blake Lewis, Grieves, Timber Timbre, and More!

Friday, June 6

Yes, Sir Mix-A-Lot will forever be known to the mainstream as the guy who gave the world “Baby Got Back” and “Posse on Broadway,” but his exploits didn’t stop there. A brief run in the mid-’90s with POTUSA (a group he’ll again team up with on June 21 at the Rock ’n’ Roll Seattle Marathon) as part of the rap-rock band Subset allowed him to broaden his horizons. “Carz,” a synth-happy sendup of Gary Numan’s “Cars” that’s soon to appear on his first album in over a decade, Dun 4got About Mix, further proved he can do a creative left turn as well as anybody. So is it really that much of a stretch that Mix will make a guest appearance with the Seattle Symphony to reimagine his two biggest hits as part of the orchestra’s latest Sonic Evolution concert? Even if it is, how in the hell can you not want to hear what that will sound like? Ludovic Morlot conducts, with Gabriel Prokofiev, Luís Tinoco, Pickwick. Benaroya Hall, 200 University St., 215-4747, seattlesymphony.org. 8 p.m. $19–$35. All ages. BP

Blake Lewis may have named his third album Portrait of a Chameleon, but the Bothell native has never been one to blend in. He entered the national spotlight in 2007 as an American Idol hopeful who blew audiences away with his ability to beatbox new life into old classics. Though Lewis ultimately came in second, his ability to think outside the box has taken him far in his post-Idol days. His first album, Audio Day Dream, debuted at #10 on the Billboard 200, and the bass-heavy “Your Touch,” from May’s Chameleon, was used in an Internet Explorer campaign. Elsewhere, “Start Again” has a fresh, acoustic vibe that contrasts with the seductive “I Want You,” featuring Samantha James, and the funky, horn-heavy “Disco in Space.” Lewis really opens up on the anthemic “Survivor,” a song about finding inner strength and believing in yourself—a lesson he no doubt had to learn while creating Chameleon without the help of a label. With RA Scion, Vox Mod, Mother of Pearl, DJ Indica Jones. Live painting by OneSevenNine. The Crocodile, 2200 Second Ave., 441-4618, thecrocodile.com. 8 p.m. $10. All ages. AZARIA C. PODPLESKY

Saturday, June 7

Monogamy Party, Black Lodge. Check out our write up here.

“The gapped-tooth rapper is back . . . /Name’s Benjamin/Same as I’ve ever been . . . /The love-song rapper is back.” With those lyrics from album opener “Rain Damage,” Benjamin Laub, aka Seattle-based rapper/singer Grieves, welcomes listeners to his latest, Winter & the Wolves. The 30-year-old has always woven personal stories into his lyrics, but Winter might be his most intimate album yet. In his trademark rasp, over both organic and electronic beats, Grieves takes listeners through the trials and tribulations of adulthood, from struggling to let go of childhood dreams (“Astronauts”) to just wanting to be alone (“Recluse”). He also worries about the future after being fired from a dead-end job (“Long One”) and as he begins to see troublesome aspects of his parents’ lives reflected in his own (“Like Child”). The album, produced by Grieves and B. Lewis (Bad Rabbits), also chronicles the rapper’s rocky love life. He realizes it’s time to end a toxic relationship on “How’s It Gonna Go” and scoffs at a meddling ex on “Kidding Me.” Despite all the issues addressed here, Grieves’ lyrics don’t venture into “Whoa is me” territory. Instead, they give listeners an honest look at his journey as he faces each challenge head-on, unafraid of the criticism he may face along the way. As he raps in lead single “Shreds”: “They want to pick apart the passion in my ribs/I invite them/’Cause I don’t run away from shit.” With SonReal, Fearce Vill. The Showbox, 1426 First Ave., 628-3151, showbox presents.com. 9 p.m. $15 adv./$17 DOS. All ages. ACP

The Blakes, Slim’s Last Chance. Read our thoughts about the Blakes, then and now, here .

Sunday, June 8

The music of Timber Timbre moves like a fever dream—vivid and elusive, holding your hand through a half-awake journey. Maybe it’s in the mysterious lyrical imagery that keeps you coming back for more; yet there’s something else, an intangible feeling. While tethered closely to a warm vintage feel, each song is equally balanced with modern pop elements, creating something at once enigmatic and familiar. Straight from the mind of songwriter Taylor Kirk, his newest dark doo-wop album, fittingly titled Hot Dreams, evokes noir nightclubs and alluring figures, all wrapped in a thick atmospheric haze. Kirk’s signature croon is inviting and creepy at the same time. With lyrics like “I wanna follow through/Follow through on all those promises and threats to you, babe,” they present an unsettling love story. The cinematic soundscapes that coat each song swirl like cigarette smoke in a breezy lull of timelessness, moving in and out of the shadows, inviting you to close your eyes and enter them. With Tasseomancy. The Crocodile. 8 p.m. $15. All ages. STIRLING MYLES

The Jezabels Formed in 2007, this group of Australian friends has seen a quick rise in international popularity while establishing a promising musical career. Their second album, The Brink, dropped in January with 10 main tracks and one bonus one—a trifecta of indie, alternative rock, and pop the band calls “intensindie.” If you’re having a bad day, the four-piece—Nik Kaloper on drums, Samuel Lockwood on lead guitar, Hayley Frances McGlone on lead vocals, and Heather Shannon on piano and keys—won’t bring you out of your melancholy mood. Instead they’ll bring you into their world, with sad songs, minor keys, and McGlone’s passionate singing, which sounds as if she’s hurting for something so much more than you. With Gold & Youth, Joyfield. Neumos, 925 E. Pike St., 709-9442, neumos.com. 8 p.m. $15 adv. 21 and over. LAUREL RICE

Bobby Bare Jr., Showbox. Read our story here .

 
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