- Rob Cullivan
- Portland Tribune - Features
Far East to Midwest
Minneapolis post-punk Chinese rockers Birthday Suits are a guitar-drums duo that has stripped rock 'n' roll down to its barest of bones, crushing them into dust and then creating a Great Wall of Sound out of the detritus. However, unlike the one in China, this wall doesn't keep the marauding invaders out, it's filled with holes to let them in so that they can ravage the countryside of your ears with pillaging of the most punkish sort. Birthday Suits will join three newer Portland bands, Thor Ark, East Wenatchee Iowa and Stray Heat at Slabtown for a night of total indie rock slammage.
Birthday Suits, Thor Ark, East Wenatchee Iowa, Stray Heat 9 p.m. Friday, March 5, Slabtown, 1033 N.W. 16th Ave. $5. Info: 503-223-0099, www.slabtownbar.net.
Fiddle dee suite
As St. Patrick's Day - that's March 17 for you heathens - approaches, Irish musicians of all types will be coming out of the woodwork to separate you from the green in your wallet. Take our advice and spend that cabbage on world-class Irish fiddler Kevin Burke and guitarist/film-score-composer Cal Scott, who will premiere their new CD 'The Irish Session Suite' at the Aladdin Theater. Backed by Andrew Ehrlich on violin, Anna Schaum on viola, and Justin Kagan on cello, Burke and Scott will present a variety of tunes, including selections from 'Suite,' which brings to mind some of the best recordings of the Chieftains, among others. Burke's fiddling, in particular, strikes just the right balance between pristine classicism and gritty Celtic abandonment. The show is also a benefit concert for KEX for Kids, which provides glasses and hearing aids for needy students
Kevin Burke, Cal Scott 7:30 p.m. Saturday, March 6, The Aladdin Theater, 3017 S.E. Milwaukee Ave. $25 to $35 advance, $27 to $37 day of show. Minors must be accompanied by parents. Info: 503-234-9694, www.aladdin-theater.com.
The Wild Ones
Black Rebel Motorcycle Club realizes you study your AC/DC, Stones and Faces (not to mention your Pixies and Stone Roses) not to pay tribute, but to learn how to blow them off the stage. Indeed, the gods of rock have ordained this to be the only worthy pursuit of those about to rock. One of the few popular bands on the scene today that understands real rock 'n' roll is about the riffin' - not just the bombast. The Rebels will be jamming with Southern grunge garagemen The Whigs at the Wonder Ballroom.
Black Rebel Motorcycle Club, The Whigs, 8 p.m. Sunday, March 7, The Wonder Ballroom, 128 N.E. Russell St. $20 advance, $23 day of show. Info: 503-284-8686, www.wonderballroom.com.
From the town that just gave us the Winter Olympics comes Petunia and the Vipers. The flower girl plays guitar, sings and yodels, and her band of Vancouver, B.C., players combine rockabilly and western swing along with a healthy dose of originals. The Vipers are Jimmy Roy on lap steel, Stephen Nikleva on guitar, Marc L'Esperance on drums, and Sam Shoichet on upright bass. These countrified cats have backed everyone from Ray Condo to Sarah McLachlan.
Petunia and The Vipers 9:30 p.m. Monday, March 8, Duff's Garage, 1635 S.E. Seventh Ave. Call to confirm show time and cover. Info: 503-234-2337, www.duffsgarage.com.
One listen to jazz vocalist Heather Keizur and you're transported to a sidewalk café on the Champs d'Elysees in Paris, where you stare into the eyes of your raven-haired lover as she wordlessly persuades you to forget the prenuptial agreement you were about to discuss. Keizur sings in both English and French, and recently recorded a demo CD with jazz recording artist Tom Grant and one of Portland's top bassists, Dave Captein.
Heather Keizur 7 p.m. Wednesday, March 10, The Heathman Restaurant in the Heathman Hotel, 1001 S.W. Broadway. Free. Info: 503-790-7752, www.heathmanrestaurantandbar.com.