Wednesday, Jan. 21
Growing up in Seattle wasn’t all sunshine and rainbows for rapper Gabriel Teodros, who chronicles some of his struggles on his latest album, the SoulChef-produced Evidence of Things Not Seen. On “Bus Stops,” for instance, Teodros talks about thinking he would be “outlined in chalk” before he graduated from high school and being embarrassed that his clothes came from thrift shops. But the rapper also acts as an older brother on Evidence, offering bits of wisdom like “Don’t do business unless it’s a win-win” and “Don’t let anybody else’s idea of success define yours” on “Light Attracts Light & Everything Else Too.” It’s advice we’ve all heard before, but something about Teodros’ delivery, plus features from Jonathan Emile, Sarah MK, and Shakiah, who is opening this show, makes it really sink in. With Dex Amora, Shakiah, EarDr.Umz, The MetroGnome. The Crocodile, 2200 Second Ave., 441-4618, thecrocodile.com. 8 p.m. $10 DOS. All ages.
If the “ooh-ooh-oohs” from Mates of State’s “Palomino” are still stuck in your head more than three years after the indie-pop duo’s last release, Mountaintops, fear not; the band is working on new music. The pair hasn’t released any new tunes just yet, but the volley of vocals from the husband-and-wife team of Jason Hammel (drums) and Kori Gardner (keys) fits a variety of sounds, from the peppy (“Palomino,” “Sway,”) to songs like “Unless I’m Led” and “At Least I Have You,” which, while still stirring, are just a tad mellower than the band’s typical fare. With Fictionists. Tractor Tavern, 5213 Ballard Ave. N.W., 789-3599, tractortavern.com. 9 p.m. $16. 21 and over.
Adult-contemporary singer Jill Cohn doesn’t believe in slowing down. In recent years she released two projects: the Yellow Rose EP and Cinema, a collection of remixes of songs from across her discography. These projects, of course, led Cohn, who has opened for the likes of Dave Matthews and Jewel, to tour for a majority of the year. While on and off the road, Cohn found time to write her 11th album, Heartstrings Touching Ground, with producer Malcolm Burn (Daniel Lanois, Bob Dylan, Emmylou Harris). At this record release show, Cohn will celebrate Heartstrings and kick off what is sure to be another jam-packed year. With Hereward. Triple Door, 216 Union St., 838-4333, thetripledoor.net. 7:30 p.m. $10 adv./$17 DOS. All ages.
Thursday, Jan. 22
The Fabulous Downey Brothers. Not ringing any bells? How about “the band whose members wear a variety of oddly shaped headpieces while performing?” Perhaps now the name is starting to sound familiar? The seven-piece is about experimental as it comes, without factoring in those headpieces. Its latest, Scare, is a collection of controlled punk- and 8-bit-tinged chaos with lots of erratic vocals. It’s questionable whether the headgear—from multicolored geometric shapes to the faces of strange creatures covered in faux fur—adds anything to the music, but it definitely adds to the experience. With Verbal Tip, Nestoria. The Benbow Room, 4210 S.W. Admiral Way, Suite A, 466-1953, benbowroom.com. 9 p.m. $5. 21 and over.
Haunted Summer is an appropriate name for the dream-pop duo of Bridgette Eliza Moody and John Seasons, but not in the spooky sense. The pair’s blend of experimental guitar riffs, ethereal orchestral features, and Moody’s trance-like vocals—plus a ton of oddball electronic sounds that add even more texture—creates a sound that sticks with you. Their psychedelic tunes strike a balance between channeling nostalgia and staying in the present, and while there are a lot of pieces to the Haunted Summer puzzle, there’s a simplicity to the latest, Birth, that makes for easy listening. With Goodbye Heart, Golden Gardens. Columbia City Theater, 4916 Rainier Ave. S., 722-3009, columbiacity theater.com. 8:30 p.m. $8 adv./$10 DOS. 21 and over.
For the past few months, Theoretics has been working on “One a Month,” a project in which the local electronica five-piece collaborates with artists like Hanna Stevens, Grynch, Afrok, Moe Betta, Shelton Harris, and The Bad Tenants (which is opening this show) on a new song each month. This month’s release, “Exit Signs,” featuring Maiah Manser, is also included on the band’s upcoming EP, Fugue State. Manser gives “Exit Signs” both an ethereal and a jazzy edge, but Theoretics’ hip-hop influences come through loud and clear. Fans can hear that, and more, live first at this Fugue State release show. Also with Klozed Sirkut. Nectar Lounge, 412 N. 36th St., 632-2020, nectarlounge.com. 8 p.m. $7 adv./$9 DOS. 21 and over.
When master wordsmiths Aesop Rock (The Uncluded, The Weathermen, Two of Every Animal) and Rob Sonic (Sonic Sum) team up, what can you expect except one lyrically complex tune after the next? With DJ Big Wiz, they perform as Hail Mary Mallon (the woman who allegedly infected more than 50 people with typhoid fever) and released their sophomore album, Bestiary, last year. Like its predecessor, Are You Gonna Eat That?, the album proves why Rock and Sonic are two of hip-hop’s most sought-after writers. You may not catch every obscure reference the first time around, but that’s all the more reason to keep Bestiary on repeat. With Homeboy Sandman, DJ Abilities, Dark Time Sunshine. Neumos, 925 E. Pike St., 709-9442, neumos.com. 8 p.m. $20. All ages.
Local quartet Corespondents’ instrumental tunes are so vivid, you can practically hear the lyrics telling the accompanying story. Just take “Winner of My Disco Tent,” the first single from the band’s recently released cassette, lolcats, for instance. With a ton of thick, twangy guitar riffs and dusty percussion, the song could be on the soundtrack to an old spaghetti Western, no questions asked, but hints of nontraditional instruments add a worldly feel. At this cassette-release show, the band will let “Winner,” plus other fantastically named tunes like “(All Up in My) Drug Rug,” “Audios Amigos,” and “The The Tar Tar Pits,” do the talking. With Ben Von Wildenhaus with the Professional Band, Diminished Men. Sunset Tavern, 5433 Ballard Ave. N.W., 784-4880, sunsettavern.com. 9 p.m. $8. 21 and over.
“I’m not hiding from who I am inside,” classically trained vocalist Kathleen Parrish sings on “Hard to Breathe” from her debut EP, Veins, being released tonight. With as much honesty and openness as she can muster, the alt-jazz singer gives listeners an all-access look into her life across the EP’s four tracks. From wanting to protect a friend from harm (“Red Fleece Jacket”) to finding inner strength (the title track), Parrish’s Veins sounds like verbatim passages from her journal. With Bleachbear, Emily Clementine. Vera Project, 305 Warren Ave. N., 956-8372. 7:30 p.m. $6 adv./$8 DOS. All ages.
Friday, Jan. 23
Rarely if ever has a press bio made me feel like I needed to go back to school as much as that of Brooklyn R&B-tinged electronic duo Beacon, aka singer/producer Thomas Mullarney III and producer Jacob Gossett. According to their bio, their latest EP, L1, was inspired by a phenomenon called Lagrangian points, which mark when an object, like a satellite, can remain stable when orbiting between two gravitational pulls, like those of the Earth and the Sun. Confused? Don’t worry; the idea of balance and influence translates to the music thanks to Mullarney’s vocals, which sound much like Tom Krell from How to Dress Well. With Lord Raja. Barboza, 925 E. Pike St., 709-9442, thebarboza.com. 7 p.m. $10 adv. 21 and over.
Saturday, Jan. 24
Glasgow-based indie-pop band The Vaselines broke up in 1989, just two years after it formed, but Kurt Cobain, a huge fan of the band, helped keep its name and music on everyone’s mind by singing the band’s praises in interviews and covering Vaseline songs with Nirvana. Back together since 2008, the group, fronted by founding members and vocalists/guitarists Eugene Kelly and Frances McKee, recently released its third full-length, V for Vaselines. The album features the vocal harmonies and indie-pop energy that made Cobain, and so many others, fall for the pair way back when, but they also debut their folkier side on songs like “Single Spies.” With Loch Lomond. Neumos, 925 E. Pike St., 709-9442, neumos.com. 8 p.m. $18 adv. 21 and over.
Tuesday, Jan. 27
Sometimes all it takes is a single word to ignite a creative spark. For singer/violinist Kishi Bashi, leading his string quartet at this show, that word was Lighght (pronounced “light”), the name of his latest album and a one-word poem by Aram Saroyan. But while the poem and album share a title, the similarities end there. The poem’s extreme minimalism is juxtaposed against Bashi’s loop-heavy mix of orchestral and electronic elements, plus layered vocals galore. Even still, the album is as buoyant as its title suggests. With Elizabeth & The Catapult. The Neptune, 1303 N.E. 45th St., 682-1414, stg presents.org/neptune. 8 p.m. $25 adv./$27 DOS. All ages.