Slabtown Bender Blasts Off Tonight in Portland

Bare Wires Live in San Francisco 2008, photo by <a href=
Bare Wires Live in San Francisco 2008, photo by Canderson
posted Friday Feb 6th, 2009

The second annual Slabtown Bender gets underway tonight in Portland at the Slabtown bar, and is fully packed slot to slot with some of the best rock'n'roll you can find out there. Tonight's showcase features the local act The Mean Jeans who released their debut 7" on Rehab Records and a new single on Dirtnap at any second. Playing the perfectly timeless and retarded sort of pop tunes that turn bong hits into lifestyle choices, Mean Jeans are on the same page as their forefathers, the Angry Samoans. Following through with the powerpop, the next act Pleasure Kills hail from San Francisco and play a cleaner version of the genre with female-fronted vocals, sweeter melodies, and less of the beer-pillaging antics that make Means Jeans so great. Vancougar, the four-piece all girl group from Vancouver have the next slot on the bill, and fit in nicely before Bare Wires hit the stage. Tic Tac Totally Records is slated to release the Bare Wires debut full-length LP sometime soon, along with a companion VHS (yep, the medium isn't dead just yet) featuring two of their music videos. Up next, Pure Country Gold, the blazing Portland two-piece have completely redefined the post-Gories blues shtick, turning it back into the escapist, ass-slapping party vibe that's more suited for these troubled times. And with a follow-up performance from the Fucking Eagles in the next slot, who also play a sort of booze gospel/cooze blues sound, I'm sure the bare floor at Slabtown will turn into a sloppy pool of stale beer. As a closer to Friday's showcase, as if by some mystical order, King Louie returns to his (other) Motherland to perform as King Louie and the Loose Diamonds.

Saturday is going to be pleasantly brutal for festival goers. There's a matinee show featuring the San Francisco bedroom psych-folk act, Ty Segall, who also plays in the Traditional Fools who are performing later that night. The rest of the line-up Saturday night is completely insane, featuring acts like Reptilian Civilian, Thee Makeout Party and Hank IV to get things going, but it's the stacked headlining slots that makes Saturday night so crazy. The Pierced Arrows performing before Mudhoney just might be too much for you to take, but an opportunity like this doesn't present itself too often so you might want to get extra drunk for it so it's harder to remember.

If you were thinking about sleeping in Sunday morning, forget about it, you've got too much to do. There's another matinee show with a solid roster featuring The Wires, Meercaz and Black Pussy (the band), and then with a little time to spare the night show will get underway with another unbelievable line-up. Opening the show is the awesome Portland band Leaders, who play barren, futuristic and jury-rigged rock'n'roll that rings perfectly with the times. After sets by Shark Toys, Guitar Magazine and the Pity Fucks, the night really winds up with guaranteed blazing sets by Static Static, and and the bubbly pop act from Nebraska, The Box Elders. Jack Oblivian is making a rare appearance as the headliner too, so don't miss it.

check out a video for Pierced Arrows' "Shades" courtesy of PAtv, right here...