Dr. Dog on Letterman performing "My Old Ways"

Being able to choose between one of five respectable shows on a Wednesday is pretty remarkable.



Go Listen to Some Music Tonight

Dr. Dog on Letterman performing "My Old Ways"

Being able to choose between one of five respectable shows on a Wednesday is pretty remarkable.

Dr. Dog, Tractor Tavern, 9 p.m., $12 adv, $14 dos

I did not write up retro psych-pop freakout band Dr. Dog for Short List this week, mainly because there was so much shit going on this Wednesday that I didn't want to make half my section about Wednesday shows, and I don't think this show needs much attention to sell out, anyhow. Frankly, I'm surprised it hasn't already. The band just put out their fifth record, Fate, and I think Dr. Dog fans alike will be satisfied with the early '70s aesthetic. Dr. Dog gets labeled as a "concept" band a lot, but the only thing that's really conceptual about this record is that it's an actual album that's meant to be listened to all the way through, not just a CD of singles, as is now the norm. This can be a problem for all you iPod-wielding shuffle addicts, but exercise some restraint and resist the urge to flex that index finger, wouldja, and just listen to the thing before you get too trigger-happy.

The Wedding Present, Earlimart at Neumos, 8 p.m., $13 adv.

Ma'chell wrote this for Short List this week:

If you Google "British Pixies" you'll suffer results on everything from elves to porn. By narrowing the search to music, you'll see the phrase questionably applied to everyone from British Sea Power to the Smiths. I'm sure I'm not the first to make this case, but I've always believed that the title rightfully goes to the Wedding Present. Though the Smiths may have come first, it's Gedge & Co. whose style, scope of influence and resurrection most mirror those of indie rock's most beloved Bean Town babies. Especially in Seattle, where there have to be at least 16 bands I can think of that have been so "influenced" by the Wedding Present they should be paying royalties (and none of whom are opening tonight's show). Instead, TWP are smartly paired with Earlimart, another band which, much like a cheerleader on Prozac, knows how to mask the misery in a pretty, perky package.

The Ruby Suns, Karl Blau, the Final Spins, Cafe Venus, 9 p.m., $6

There are so many reasons to attend this show. You get to see Joe Svyersen's new band play. You get to see Karl Blau play stuff from his very new and very lovely record, Nature's Got Away. And you get to see the Ruby Suns, who infuse pop with world music in such a pleasing, feel-good manner. As Erik Neumann wrote this week:

New Zealand sits on the far side of the Pacific Ocean, an island with North America to its east and Africa to its west. Auckland's The Ruby Suns, duo Ryan McPhun and Amee Robinson, have used this geography to their advantage, sampling some of the best pop styles from either side of the island: the band's latest album, Sea Lion, sits squarely between Western and African pop, incorporating off beat rhythms, lyrics in Maori, fuzzed out keyboard effects, and hand claps. The group invites comparisons to Os Mutantes, Of Montreal and Brian Wilson, fun bands who all share a common dance pop denominator. And in spite of some serious setbacks- a few years ago, en route to Seattle, The Ruby Suns' tour van burned to the ground along with the band's equipment and possessions- they've miraculously recovered and will be playing Seattle before heading to New York's CMJ Music Marathon and then Europe. Also on the bill is Karl Blau, king of the lo-fi Anacortes sound, and the Final Spins, a promising new project from members of Throw Me the Statue, The Blessed Light, Siberian, and the Pica Beats.

Shiny Toy Guns, Nectar, 7 p.m., $16 adv

Raechel Sims wrote this about them:

Break out the MAC eyeliner and start pasting down your unwashed locks into an immobile side-part: Shiny Toy Guns are bringing their confection-loving, industrial-inspired sound to Nectar for a night of all-ages lovin' in support of their new album, Season of Poison. Hoping that the third time'll be the charm, the band unleashes its newest female vocalist Sisely Treasure on the new single "Richochet," a taunting, sing-song accusation set to a backdrop of raging guitars. Try to stifle your laughter as an endless cavalcade of goth-emo-hipster-whatever kids take a barrage of photos for their MySpace page, and enjoy the pulsating throb of keyboards, effects pedals, and all phones around you texting "OMG, where R U?!"

Neil Diamond, KeyArena, 8 p.m., $54 thru $119

Sweeeeeet Caroline, bah bah bah.....no explanation needed here. That is, if you can tolerate the fans, per Mike Seely's Neil Diamond experience:

The last time I saw Neil Diamond was in a large sports arena in St. Louis. There were more Christmas sweaters in the audience than at any large public event I’d witnessed—and it wasn’t even Christmas. Which brings me to the last time I saw Neil Diamond before that. I was with a posse of friends in a KeyArena luxury box (don’t ask), and didn’t want to pay $10 per beer. So, prior to the show, I swung by the Queen Anne liquor store and picked up a couple travelers of bourbon, which I dutifully snuck in. So there we were, sitting in our box, singing along to the songs, which is what you do at a Neil Diamond concert. But apparently, it’s not what you do at a Neil Diamond when sharing a luxury box with a descendant of the Woolworth’s drug store family. This prick was so annoyed with our singing that he summoned the usher and had us ejected for a technicality: the booze. I still want to kick that guy’s ass. I wish Neil Diamond shows didn’t attract the likes of him, or people in Christmas sweaters. I wish Neil Diamond’s inherent coolness attracted cooler listeners who appreciate “Love on the Rocks” and “Solitary Man” as much as I do. I love Neil Diamond. But his fans? Not so much.

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