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High Notes: The Best Live Music in Portland This Week, July 21-26

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

 

Social Studies courtesy of Antenna Farm Records (image cropped)

In the summertime, the concerts fall from trees like anxious fruit around these parts, but the annual PDX Pop Now Festival is definitely a hot-weather high point of the cultural season. It’s your best chance to get caught up with all those awesome local bands your night owl pals keep bugging you to see. Think of it as one-stop shopping at the Portland Rock Mall. 

Social Studies

July 22 @ 9pm

The last thing released by this San Francisco indie quintet was a serviceable cover of the Grass Roots’ “Live For Today,” and that was two years ago. Presumably Social Studies, fronted by the fascinating Natalia Rogovin, has something new in the oven since unveiling the superb 2012 album ‘Developer.’ If you’ve yet to sample the band’s elegant tension, it’s principally constructed when buzzing angular guitars cross swords with strobe-light synthesizer noodles that would sound right at home on a New Order or Berlin mixtape. But singer Rogovin is the ace in the hole; on songs like “Terracur” and “Developer” her sturdy voice arcs from burning torch to stormy siren.

$10. Bunk Bar, 1028 SE Water Ave. 

Unknown Mortal Orchestra

July 23 @ 8pm

Part-time Portlander Ruban Nielson untangles some knotty relationships on his most recent record, ‘Multi-Love,’ a deeply danceable collection of songs that chronicle the fallout from a love triad. Standout tracks include “The World Is Crowded,” a seductive Steely Dan thumper smothered in wistfulness, the Stevie Wonder-ish “Stage and Screen,” and “Can’t Keep Checking My Phone” a ferociously funky number gilded with Nielson’s artisan studio trippiness.

$18. Aladdin Theater, 3017 SE Milwaukie Ave. 

Stiff Little Fingers

July 24 @ 8pm

There are, no doubt, poser punk bands that have achieved more than their fair share of notoriety and prestige. Formed in Belfast in 1977, Stiff Little Fingers are the real McCoy, fearless elder statesmen with impeccable credentials. Coming of age during an especially turbulent (and violent) time in Northern Ireland, rabble-rousing lead singer Jake Burns stirred the pot on early songs like “Suspect Device” and “Bloody Sunday,” before the band eventually tempered its sound with pop and reggae influences, as was the custom at the time.   

$20-25. Hawthorne Theatre, 1507 SE 39th Ave. 

PDX Pop Now!

July 24-26 

This annual three-day fest offers an all-you-can-eat feeding frenzy of Portland bands—and it’s absolutely free. More than 40 bands, from the Blue Cranes’ moody jazz rambles to Long Knife’s scalding punk to the latest tight verses from hip hop godfather Cool Nutz, will be on display, so we’re confident there’s going to be a needle in the haystack that will tickle even the most persnickety palate. The Shivas, Autonomics, Catherine Feeny, Balto, Moon By You, and Coco Columbia are among the names slated to perform. 

Free. Audiocinema, 226 SE Morrison St. 

Mavis Staples and Patty Griffin courtesy Oregonzoo.org

Mavis Staples, Patty Griffin

July 25 @ 8pm

Staples, arguably our greatest gospel singer, and Griffin, a country songwriter of uncommon lyrical power, are co-headlining the Sweet Harmony Soul tour, and will perform together as well as separately. The pair recorded “Waiting For My Child” for the 2009 Grammy winning gospel duets album, ‘Oh Happy Day,’ and Griffin recorded an entire album of spirituals for 2010’s ‘Downtown Church’ record. Nothing wrong with that ol’ time religion when the revival gets righteously rocking.  

$45-79. Oregon Zoo, 4001 SW Canyon Rd. 

John Chandler has been writing about rock and/or roll for 25 years with The Rocket, Portland Tribune, Portland Monthly, Magnet, Dagger, No Depression, and Puncture. He also writes about beer, booze, and bars for Portland's BarFly website and plays in a couple goofy bands when the mood strikes him. He can most often be found at the wheel of horrificflicks.com, a review website dedicated to horror movies.

 

Related Slideshow: The 20 Biggest Names in Music Coming to Portland This Summer

Portland will have a diverse selection of concerts to attend, which will include artists ranging from Tim McGraw to Ariana Grande.

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Lana Del Rey

While not in Portland, it's just a short drive to the Sleep Country Ampitheater in Ridgefield, Washington to see Lana Del Rey on May 22nd. This will be the 8th stop on the star's "Endless Summer Tour." And bonus, Courtney Love is the opening act.

Click HERE for more information and to purchase tickets. 

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Paramore

On May 25th Paramore rocks out at the Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall. "The Self-Titled Tour" will be the band's third world tour since forming in 2004. 

Click HERE for more information and to purchase tickets. 

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Barry Manilow

Barry Manilow's "One Last Time Tour" will be making a stop at the Moda Center on May 28th. This will be the Tony, Grammy and Emmy award-winning musician's last time touring across North America.

Click HERE for more information and to purchase tickets. 

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Imagine Dragons

Imagine Dragons will be performing at the Moda Center on June 3rd. This will be the band's second stop on the "Smoke + Mirrors Tour," featuring songs off the band's newest album.

Click HERE for more information and to purchase tickets. 

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Nico & Vinz

The Norwegian singing/songwriting duo will be performing songs off their newest album, Black Star Elephant, at the Wonder Ballroom on June 3rd. Black Star Elephant is the duo's second studio album.

Click HERE for more information and to purchase tickets. 

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Neon Trees

Neon Trees are taking their "Pop Psychology Tour" to the Wonder Ballroom on June 7th. The band will be perfoming songs off of their newest album.

Click HERE for more information and to purchase tickets. 

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Ed Sheeran

The England-born singer will be taking his "2015 North American Tour" to the Moda Center on June 20th. The Grammy-nominated singer's concert is almost sold out so be sure to get your tickets soon!

Click HERE for more information and to purchase tickets. 

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Van Halen

One of the most well-known rock bands from the 70's and 80's is coming to the Sleep Country Ampitheater  in Ridgefield, Washington. All you Van Halen fans be sure to get your tickets fast for the concert on July 7th. 

Click HERE for more information and to purchase tickets. 

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Zac Brown Band

The award winning country band from Georgia performs at the Sleep Country Ampitheater on July 12th. The Zac Brown Band's "Jekyll + Hyde Tour" will feture songs from their fourth studio album. 

Click HERE for more information and to purchase tickets. 

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NEEDTOBREATHE

See some cool animals and sway to summery tunes at NEEDTOBREATHE's concert at the Oregon Zoo on July 17th. NEEDTOBREATHE is just one of many performances in the Oregon Zoo's summer concert lineup.  

Click HERE for more information and to purchase tickets. 

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John Mellencamp

John Mellencamp will be bringing his "2015 Plain Spoken North American Tour" to the Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall on July 21st. The Rock and Roll Hall Of Fame inductee recently released his first album in over four years.

Click HERE for more information and to purchase tickets. 

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Rush

Calling all Rush fans. The iconic band will be performing at the Moda Center on July 21st. Rush's "R40 Live 40th Anniverary Tour" will feature some of the band's greatest hits. 

Click HERE for more information and to purchase tickets. 

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Aerosmith

Aerosmith's "Blue Army Tour" will be coming to the Sleep Country Ampitheater on July 28th. For this tour the band wanted to perform at locations that they haven't played at before or at venues they haven't played in for a while.

Click HERE for more information and to purchase tickets. 

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Fall Out Boy

Now this is an odd mix: Fall Out Boy will be performing at the Sleep Country Ampitheater with Wiz Khalifa and Hoodie Allen on August 1st. "The Boys Of Zummer Tour" will be one that sells out quickly so be sure to get your tickets soon!

Click HERE for more information and to purchase tickets. 

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Kelly Clarkson

Kelly Clarkson will be bringing her "Piece by Piece Tour" to the Moda Center on August 20th. This will be Clarkson's first tour since giving birth to her daughter, River. Pentatonix will be featured as the opener. 

Click HERE for more information and to purchase tickets. 

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Huey Lewis And The News

Huey Lewis and the News will be performing at the Oregon Zoo on August 29th. The Grammy-Award winning band has been performing together for 36 years.

Click HERE for more information and to purchase tickets. 

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Kid Rock

Kid Rock will be playing songs from his newest album, First Kiss, at the Sleep Country Ampitheater. "The Cheap Date Tour" is scheduled for September 4th, and will also feature Foreigner. 

Click HERE for more information and to purchase tickets. 

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Ariana Grande

The former Nickelodeon star turned pop diva will be arriving at the Moda Center on September 4th as part of her "Honeymoon Tour." Latin superstar Prince Royce will also be accompanying Grande on this tour. 

Click HERE for more information and to purchase tickets. 

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Tim McGraw

One of country's biggest superstars will be performing at the Sleep Country Ampitheater on September 5th. McGraw's "Shotgun Rider Tour" will also feature country stars, Billy Currington and Chase Bryant. 

Click HERE for more information and to purchase tickets. 

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Weird Al Yankovic

Weird Al Yankovic will be taking his talents to the Oregon Zoo on September 5th and 6th. Tickets are selling out quickly so be sure to get yours soon!

Click HERE for more information and to purchase tickets. 

 
 

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