• Eugene Weekly Loves You!
Share |

Music

August 25, 2016

Norma Fraser and Thomas Mapfumo are legendary musicians, both residing right here in Eugene. If you’ve never heard of them, don’t beat yourself up. They’re better known in their countries of origin — Jamaica and Zimbabwe, respectively — than in the states. 

August 25, 2016

What do booze, Philadelphia and reggae-ska have in common? Mike Pinto

Pinto is a Philly-born singer-songwriter who cut his teeth playing at punk rock shows and the occasional coffee shop. Since the Philly rock scene wasn’t his jam, Pinto moved to San Diego, where he connected with the Sublime-loving community. Life in Philadelphia taught him how to be a storyteller, he says, and California helped solidify his “reggae-ska” sound. 

August 18, 2016

Bustin’ Jieber, a local jazz band with rock 'n' roll tendencies (plus a song about nipples), is bidding adieu to Eugene. For the past five years, the trio has been jamming in venues like Luckey’s and Sam Bond’s Garage — and maybe your neighbor’s basement — as well as the Whiteaker Block Party. Susan Lucia (drums), Dusty Carlson (bass) and Andy Page (sax) have created a niche for themselves by consistently playing high-energy shows that exude genuine fun. 

August 18, 2016

Sometimes a band’s strength lies not in its particular sound but in each player’s ability to unite fully behind the sound, to present a single battlefront, to commit individual expression to one common purpose — to communicate, combust and even, at times, self-immolate as a whole.

August 11, 2016

When the United States went to war in 1941, music was in the arsenal. After Japan’s catastrophic sneak attack on Pearl Harbor, the country needed cheering up and troops needed cheering on. The nation’s pop culture institutions were enlisted, going on tours and producing “V-discs” (records) and shortwave broadcasts for deployed soldiers and music about coming home and accentuating the positive for Americans. 

August 11, 2016

Greetings from the dog days of summer: This week, to help pass the warm drowsy evening-time, Eugene offers an eclectic lineup of live music, from the return of L.A.-based freak-folk artist Globelamp to the second local show in less than a year from Portland indie-rock living legends The Dandy Warhols

Globelamp plays with Tashaki Miyaki and Mischief Mistress 5 pm Monday, Aug. 15, at The Boreal; $5, all ages until 7 pm. 

August 11, 2016

Mac DeMarco

 

Adia Victoria backstage

 

Yemen Blues

 

August 4, 2016

Pickathon continues to be the best indie music festival under Oregon skies at Happy Valley’s Pendarvis Farm Aug. 5-7. This year’s lineup is a mixture of familiar names like Jeff Tweedy, Wolf Parade, Mac DeMarco, Thee Oh Sees and Thao & The Get Down Stay Down with rising stars — My Bubba, Blossom, Alvvays and Joseph.

August 4, 2016

Bloodshy & Avant, the production duo that takes up two-thirds of Stockholm’s Miike Snow, are known as some of the most forward-thinking producers in pop. 

Their songs with Britney Spears — including the epochal “Toxic” and the Bridesmaids-immortalized “I’ve Just Begun” — are still head-scratchers even in today’s postmodern pop landscape. One would think that in their own band, free of the commercial expectations of writing for the world’s biggest stars, Bloodshy & Avant would let their ideas go completely off the chain. 

August 4, 2016

We live in a period of human existence in which vibe is more decisive than quality — in which a zillion filters can be dumped on a photograph, a full album can be drenched in reverb or a vote can be cast on guts alone.

July 28, 2016

Summer reunion: After a four-year hiatus, beloved folk-cabaret and self-described “Portgene” outfit Bad Mitten Orchestre is reuniting for one night only 8 pm Friday, July 29, at Sam Bond’s Garage; $7.

July 28, 2016

Bright young talents conquer Broadway with hip new streetwise music: Seven decades before Hamilton, 25-year-old composer Leonard Bernstein and his upstart young (average age 27) drinking buddies — singer-songwriter-comedians Betty Comden and Adolph Green and choreographer Jerome Robbins — blitzed wartime Broadway with On the Town.

July 28, 2016

A fun game: Listen to "Weird Al" Yankovic and take him deadly serious. Forget that he’s built a career lifting popular tunes from artists like Michael Jackson or Pharrell Williams. In 1988, Weird Al lampooned Jackson’s “Bad” with “Fat,” and on Yankovic’s 2014 release Mandatory Fun, he borrowed Pharrell’s “Happy” and made it “Tacky.” 

July 28, 2016

If you’re sailing down the Willamette River through Corvallis, don’t be surprised when you hear distant piano music. No, it’s not some river ghost — it’s probably the Barker Gypsies. 

For the past three summers, the folk-pop duo of singer Catherine Ellis and keyboardist Brian Poucher has claimed a sandbar just offshore from their hometown’s Willamette Park and Natural Area as their base, playing for river-floaters and landlubbers alike. 

“People can hear us before they see us,” Ellis says.

July 28, 2016

If you’ve spent time in a city, even little Eugene, you know the main characters on the sidewalk: the kid looking to bum a cigarette; the person staked out on a corner trying to convince you that the world is doomed; and the folks just angling to get you to buy their stuff. 

This is how I bumped into Kevin Hustle in downtown Eugene. I’ll admit I was skeptical when he approached me with something along the lines of, “Hey, check out my demo.” 

July 21, 2016

When folks who were born into the post-Woodstock era need a pop song that says “chill out, relax, you’ve got this,” chances are they sing the theme from TV show Greatest American Hero, which goes like this: “Believe it or not I’m walking on air/ I never thought I could feel so free.”

Devon Geyer’s dad wrote that iconic TV tune. Geyer is the main man behind L.A. pop project Decorations, whose full-length debut, Have Fun, is out now on Frenchkiss Records.

July 21, 2016

Many have claimed that Bollywood — India’s film industry — is bigger than Hollywood, yet Bollywood rarely enters our orbit here in the states. It’s too bad; Bollywood has cultivated a fabulous, colorful and often over-the-top silly world of music, dance and community.

July 21, 2016

In 2010, an earthquake ripped through Haiti and caused widespread devastation. Most of us saw the news reports, but what the headlines missed was the creative Haitian culture that Mother Nature could not shut down. 

Lakou Mizik formed in the earthquake’s aftermath as a nine-person, multi-generational group that took the force of nature as an opportunity to share the rich Haitian society often misrepresented in mainstream movies and media, which might lead one to think that the only thing happening in the country is Vodou and disaster relief.

July 14, 2016

Local blues veteran Eagle Park Slim (né Autry McNeace), who has a history of heart failure, is recovering from the implantation of a new wireless heart-monitoring system. A press release states: “He gets short of breath sometimes, but he is still playing guitar and writing music every day. When asked how he feels, he responds with a smile, ‘Well, you know some days are diamond and some days are gold.’” Slim, 74, will play with his All Star Blues Band 3:30 pm July 23 at the Saturday Market.

 

July 14, 2016

Let’s assume you love classical music and you’re having a hangover now that the Bach Festival is over and the symphony and other classical seasons don’t get going for some weeks. Let us further assume that you are not among the fortunate many who found out about the Eugene Symphony’s eighth annual Symphony in the Park concert at Cuthbert Amphitheater on Saturday, July 16, before all the free tickets were snapped up by the savvy.

July 14, 2016

Welcome to the weird world of Eugene songwriter Jake McNeillie — a world where black holes suck “the flesh of unwilling girls,” human bones lie “without their meat” and animals have socks on their feet. 

“I really don’t know where the songs come from when I am writing a record,” McNeillie admits, “but I don’t question it.” 

July 14, 2016

Sweet Baby James

If storied careers are your bag, you’re already a James Taylor fan.

When the single “Fire and Rain” dropped in 1970, it is possible that nobody understood what the Boston-born singer-songwriter and multi-platinum artist was alluding to. After all, a human who writes his first song at 14 is a natural chaser of stories, and Taylor’s tale — through depression, self-help, institutions and modesty — is one for the ages.

July 7, 2016

After 16 years, Boss Hog, a side project of Jon Spencer of the Jon Spencer Blues Explosion, has returned with the Brood Star EP, a self-described amuse-bouche to the band’s forthcoming full-length album Brood X

Boss Hog frontwoman, and longtime partner to Spencer, Cristina Martinez tells EW that after so many years, the time had come to release new material.

“We have never stopped playing together,” Martinez says. “Eventually, we had accumulated so much stuff it seemed stupid to not put them on a record.”

July 7, 2016

Kneeling at the altar of The Kinks, The Pixies and Nirvana, Season One!, the debut album from popular Eugene garage-rock trio VCR, has finally arrived. And rest assured, it’s fantastic. 

The self-produced album, recorded in Portland on analog tape, features Chase Clarke on guitar and vocals, Emily Hurt on bass and Tyler P. Howard on drums. 

 “Outta My Head” is a three-chord blast of pummeling proto-punk ecstasy — a lesson that rock ‘n’ roll is best served recklessly noisy and defiantly tuneful (while staying in-tune remains optional).