Listening to the Prids is like stumbling across a box of long-forgotten cassettes that hasn't been touched since the late '80s - there's a welcome familiarity to their gothy post-punk, an urgent gloom and romantic doom that hearkens back to Sisters of Mercy or Joy Division but adds a brighter, fresher sound.
Tonight marks the release of a fantastic new album, ' … Until the World Is Beautiful,' so break out your dark clothing, pile on the eyeliner, tease your hair and join the (black) celebration.
9 p.m. FRIDAY, July 14, Doug Fir, 830 E. Burnside St., 503-231-9663, $7
You're probably familiar with Bruce Hornsby through his initial hit, the ubiquitous social commentary 'The Way It Is.'
You probably don't know that his initial champion in the music industry was Huey Lewis, who produced and recorded his early material. He's not Hornsby's only insider fan.
Both Lewis and Don Henley have covered the versatile songwriter's material, his keyboard skills briefly landed him a gig with the Grateful Dead, and he produced Leon Russell's comeback album. His relaxed, easygoing tunes are a perfect complement to the zoo's outdoor setting.
7 p.m. FRIDAY, July 14, Oregon Zoo, 4001 S.W. Canyon Road, 503-226-1561, $19, all ages
You can get a contact high listening to the Rakes.
The band's urgent, energetic art-punk has a contagious fervor, and it's impossible to resist the catchiness of tunes like 'We Are All Animals' and '22 Grand Job.' The Rakes have drawn comparisons to fellow Brits David Bowie, Blur and, particularly, Wire.
With a debut as thoroughly impressive as 'Capture/Release' and a reputation for a strong live act, they stand a good chance at making a mark on these shores.
9:30 p.m. SATURDAY, July 15, Berbati's Pan, 10 S.W. Third Ave., 503-226-2122, $12-$14
Martina McBride is more than just a country star - she's a superstar.
Her fiery, expressive vocals have graced almost 20 top-10 hits and drawn exposure from mainstream pop audiences as well as country-music fans.
On her last release, 'Timeless,' she's chosen to go back to her roots, covering classic country tunes from legends like Loretta Lynn, Hank Williams, Kris Kristofferson, Tammy Wynette and Johnny Cash.
She doesn't let her idols down. Her strong voice (and equally strong vision) suits the material perfectly.
7:30 p.m. SATURDAY, July 15, Rose Garden Arena, 1 Center Court, 503-235-8771, $49.50-$59.50, all ages
Dolorean's Al James seems to have been slowly gathering steam over the past several years, gaining momentum (along with band members and collaborators) and perfecting his songwriting along the way.
Anticipation has been growing as the band gears up to release a new record. If James' trajectory continues, his heartbreakingly beautiful folk-pop should put him in the same category as Sufjan Stevens, José González and Ray Lamontagne.
10 p.m. SATURDAY, July 15, Mississippi Studios, 3939 N. Mississippi Ave., 503-288-3895, $8