- Rob Cullivan
- Portland Tribune - Features
Sept. 8, 9
Cecil B. deMelody
Australian electro-pop artist James Cecil, an original member of Architecture in Helsinki, will be performing as Super Melody twice in our fair city this week. As Super Melody, Cecil explores the worlds of disco, rock, rhythm 'n' blues, ballads and just all around fun, intelligent club-happy music. It seems unlikely anybody but a complete bore would be able to stand still listening to funky-meets-nerdy tunes, which make an excellent soundtrack to a movie about computer programmers held prisoner by Amazonian female zombies.
Super Melody, Darren Sylvester, American Girl, 9 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 8, Tube, 18 N.W. Third Ave. $5. Info: 503-241-8823. Super Melody, Glass Candy, Purple and Green, Reporter, 9 p.m. Friday, Sept. 9, Branx, 320 S.E. Second Ave. $13. All ages. Info: 503-234-5683, www.rotture.com.
Born in 1964 in Havana, guitarist-singer Juan-Carlos Formell and his band, Johnny's Dream Club, has been plying its progressive Afro-Cuban jazz for some time now, creating beautiful melodic music that is as enchanting as it is compelling. The Cuban refugee, who fled his homeland in 1993, is on tour with percussionist Jorge Leyva, trombonist/violinist Lewis Kahn, pianist Manuel Valera and bassist Ricky Rodriguez. The Grammy-nominated Formell employs progressive harmonies, diminished chords and bittersweet lyrics to evoke lost ships, lost loves, Caribbean fauna, flora and hoped-for tomorrows.
Juan-Carlos Formell, 8 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 11, Blue Monk, 3341 S.E. Belmont St. $15. Info: 503-595-0575, www.thebluemonk.com.
Ohio native Tim Easton, who calls California home now, possesses a raspy voice just a little more weightier than Bob Dylan's, and shares a similar love for American roots music. Easton is touring to promote the release of not one, but two CDs, 'Beat the Beat' and 'Since 1966.' He's working with a traveling band, comprised of Aaron Lee Tasjan of Madison Square Gardeners on guitar and piano, Mark Stepro of Ben Kweller fame on drums, and Alex Livingston of Grand Champeen on bass. With this double-fisted release, Easton stands a good chance of landing a knockout punch in the Americana ring this year.
Tim Easton, Jonny Corndawg, 8:30 p.m. Monday, Sept. 12, Mississippi Studios, 3939 N. Mississippi St. $8. Info: 503-288-3895, www.mississippistudios.com.
No country for old men
OK metalheads, here's your chance to show some love. Project Independent is coming to town to document our headbanger scene for a film called 'Living Loud - The American Metal Underground Exposed.' Filmmakers will be at this show, which features Beside the Abyss, Nasfiratu, Betrayed by Weakness, Endless Rage, Aghori and Synapse Defect. The film company is looking for you to vote for your favorite band so they can tour, record and generally wreak havoc before the Apocalypse.
Project Independent Competition, 7 p.m. Monday, Sept. 12, Tonic Lounge, 3100 N.E. Sandy Blvd. 21 and older. Info: 503-238-0543, www.projectindependent.net.
Deathtrap for cuties
With their gothic clothes and faces, they look they could've been Cure groupies, but they play more like they were in Rush if led by Marilyn Manson as the Foo Fighters mix something up in the kitchen. They're Portland's Deathtrap America, another in our nation's growing series of male-female rock duos. J.T. Locke sings and plays guitar and bass and Amanda VanderMeer sings and plays drums and keys. Unlike some such acts, this duo is not about stripping down so much as creating complex punkish progressive rock that could compete with any number of larger and similarly minded bands in terms of sonic texturing. At times, they're fond of homophonic songs, at other times they rock out in the more traditional polyphonic manner of a lot of rock 'n' roll, but either way, their eponymous debut is a pretty solid record and should garner them more than a few fans.
Deathtrap America, 7 p.m. Friday, Sept. 16, Hawthorne Theatre, 1507 S.E. 39th Ave. $8. All ages. Info: 503-233-7100, www.hawthornetheater.com.