Helms Alee at the Eastside Tavern in Olympia

Helms Alee, Born Anchors, Patrol at Sunset Tavern, 9 p.m., $8

This is one of several John


Tonight's Many Show Suggestions

Helms Alee at the Eastside Tavern in Olympia

Helms Alee, Born Anchors, Patrol at Sunset Tavern, 9 p.m., $8

This is one of several John Spalding benefit concerts coming up in the next few weeks to help release the local musician's album, Loveland; you can read a little about Helms Alee in Rocket Queen here, and more about John Spalding here.

Caro, Talkdemonic, The Sight Below at Nectar, 8 p.m., $8

Talkdemonic pulls off something that many bands fail at: Creating

beautiful-yet-technical instrumental tracks. Most bands with a good

vocalist and killer lyrics don't have to worry about what their backing

music sounds like. As long as listeners pay attention to the voice and

words, the guitar can bust a few power chords and all is dandy. Not so

with Portland's electroacoustic folk duo. On "Duality of Deathening," a

track from Talkdemonic's new EP Eyes at Half Mast, rat-a-tat drumming

holds steady beneath a lilting viola, creating background music that

needs no foreground vocals. This is the sort of music that can be

appreciated for its complicated approach while still soothing the

senses, making Talkdemonic every indie music nerd's wet dream. PAIGE RICHMOND

The Blue Note 7 Tour at the Moore Theatre, 7:30 p.m., $28-$42, all ages

The heritage of Blue Note Records is hardly in need of more

celebrating. From endless hip-hop sampling and record-cover homages to

the in-store soundtrack at Starbucks, the sound of Rudy Van Gelder's

studio in the 1960s and that classic Blue Note graphic design now

practically define jazz in the popular mind. And yet...holy CRAP, those

records are still

amazing. If there's one period in jazz I could live on forever, it's

that one, and I'm plainly not alone. The sessions from Joe Henderson,

Wayne Shorter, and so many others sound less dated, to my ears, than

much of the jazz that's been recorded since. Today, Blue Note is still

a mainstream-jazz powerhouse, and for its 70th anniversary, a band

called The Blue Note 7--a septet of strong mid-career artists, led by

Bill Charlap on piano--is touring with a songbook of great '60s tunes.

Charlap is a man of beautiful taste--anyone else, and you might want to

avoid this retread outing. But these are some skilled straight-ahead

players, and if their love of the material even approaches that of the

audience, it should be a memorable night. MARK D. FEFER

Little Pieces, Blue Skies for Black Hearts, Levi Fuller at the Comet Tavern, 9 p.m., $6


there's one thing Blue Skies for Black Hearts is known for, it's

quality song writing. The Portland four piece crafts music like a real,

honest-to-goodness garage band: Full of pop and reverb, with "ooohs"

and "ahhhs" as backing vocals. It's the same guitar formula that made

the Beatles famous, with the same sort of indie sensibility that made

Clap Your Hands Say Yeah an Internet sensation. Utterly listenable and

ultimately infectious, Blue Skies lives up to its slightly optimistic

band name. The songs off this year's Serenades and Hand Grenades

question love and loss to an upbeat tempo, making it nearly impossible

to feel anything but uplifted while listening to this band. Which is

good thing, because there's way too much bad shit happening these days

to let music be depressing, too. PAIGE RICHMOND

Hazelwood Motel, Animals At Night, Point Juncture, WA at Neumos, 8 p.m., $8

Ed Vierda, Megan Pickerel (yes, Mark Pickerel's sister), and Patrick

Smail make quiet, lo-fi folk music that uses whispered words, echoes,

and tremulous vocals to create a moody atmosphere ideal for personal

reflection, rainy days, and healing battered hearts. Though "Break

Myself in Two," probably the loudest track on the band's recent

self-titled release, seems to be the go-to single, soft songs like "My

Demon," "Say What You Will," and "Envy" seem to more accurately embody

the band's sound. And "Say What You Will" is the only track on the

record where Megan Pickerel steps out and takes the lead on vocals,

letting her lilting voice carry the song. Hardly a party album,

Hazelwood Motel possesses tremendous power in its quietest moments. In

a whisper, the world ends, and then, with a strumming guitar, it's born

anew. Yes. Their music is really that outstanding. SARA BRICKNER

Brightblack Morning Light at Vera Project, 7:30 p.m., $11, all ages

Brightblack Morning Light principals Nathan Shineywater and Rachael

Hughes live in teepees, smoke tons of weed, and write anodyne,

hypnotizing, soulful songs with titles like "Starblanket River Child."

Theirs is a fusion of the spaced-out shoegazer-gospel of Spiritualized,

the mellow country-rock of Acetone, and the heavenly vocal harmonies of

Mojave 3. Reviewing BBL's show at the Triple Door a while back for SW's

blog, Reverb, I noted that "the vibe of the set was so mellow, in fact,

that the very sporadic moments of aggressiveness in the music - a solid

floor-tom smack, a forceful finger on a key, a strongly picked guitar

string - were like thunderclaps during a gentle summer rainshower,

sudden and fleeting." I suspect tonight's gig, which celebrates the

band's recent, similarly styled disc Motion to Rejoin, will be more of the laid-back, stoner-rific same.


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