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ELEVEN PDX MAGAZINE ISSUE NO. 3

THE USUAL 4 Letter from the Editor 4 Staff Credits

VOLUME 4

FEATURES Local Feature 11 Sapient

Cover Feature 15 The Antlers

new music

FILM

5 Aural Fix

Watch Me Now 20

Sir Sly Bad Suns Giraffage

Film Editorial - Cost in Translation: Summer Blockbusters in a Globalized World Instant Queue Review

7 Short List 7 Album Reviews

COMMUNITY

Naomi Punk Sinead O'Connor The Rentals Kimbra

Portland poet Ross Robbins August Literary Events

Literary Arts 23

Neighborhood of the Month 25 SE 11th Avenue

LIVE MUSIC 9 Musicalendar An encompassing overview of concerts in PDX for the upcoming month. But that’s not all–the Musicalendar is complete with a venue map to help get you around town.

Local Hero 26 Lonesome's Pizza's Nik Sin

Visual Arts 27 Portland artist Andy Phillips

more online at elevenpdx.com


HELLO PORTLAND! Life is a celebration. Last month, Portland lost one of its dearest souls. This person spent every hour of their day living an exuberant life, organizing art and comedy events for the love of entertainment and the joy of laughter. The humor and creativity that flowed out from Kenny was what fulfilled him and more than that, it was contagious. While it takes a certain rare person to be the spark, it is reassuring to know that once the fire is blazing, it will continue to burn long after that spark is gone. From the ink and drink events at the Goodfoot to various improv comedy shows across the hills of Portland, Kenny's legacy is carried on by the people who were there to see it and continue to be inspired by the attitude of loving kindness that was constantly on display by his singular person. It is admirable to be ever mindful of those around you, and to consider how you can positively impact the lives of others, as they can positively impact your own. Thank you, Kenny, for being a reminder of that, and for inspiring the lives of all who were so fortunate to share your path. Please take a moment today to celebrate the lives of those you have loved, do love and will love. Âť

- Ryan Dornfeld, Editor in Chief

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EXECUTIVE STAFF EDITOR IN CHIEF Ryan Dornfeld CREATIVE DIRECTOR Dustin Mills SENIOR STAFF SENIOR WRITER Wendy Worzalla VISUAL ARTS Mercy McNab graphic DESIGN Dustin Mills Alex Combs COPY EDITING Megan Freshley

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COVER PHOTO Marc Lemoine

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CONTRIBUTORS Brandy Crowe, Patrick Duncan, Billy Dye, Eric Evans, Matthew Ellis, Veronica Greene, Rachael Haigh, Alisha Kelsey, Scott McHale, Aaron Mills, Kela Parker, Matthew Sweeney, Charles Trowbridge

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photographers Mercy McNab, Aa Mills, Todd Walberg DISTRIBUTION / PROMO The Redcoats

SPECIAL THANKS Our local business partners who make this project possible. Our friends, families, associates, lovers, creators and haters. And of course, our city!


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new music aural fix

AURAL FIX

UP AND COMING MUSIC FROM THE NATIONAL SCENE

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SIR SLY

The underground music scene in Portland, Oregon is exploding at the seams. When it comes to the radio, aside from everyone’s closet desire to hear the occasional Weezer throwback jams, Beastie Boys, or maybe some Nirvana, it isn’t often that one needs to flip over to corporate broadcast radio stations when there are three great options for local non-profit radio with terrific programming (KBOO, KZME and XRAY.FM). However, when that desire to dial in to corporate rock radio does strike, one big new indie pop band you could be on the lookout to hear is Sir Sly. Before they unveiled their soon-to-be-celeb names, the Los Angeles based trio was, for a time, rumored to be a “darker” offshoot of Foster the People due to a likeness in vocal styling. But they’re totally different dudes. Their debut release, Gold EP, first saw the light of day in February of 2013 and immediately shot Sir Sly to the top of online indie charts. Title track “Gold,” which was featured in an episode of Teen Wolf, is a ballad packed with electronic drum samples, spacy synthesizer, and a catchy vocal hook that elicits imagery of

2

BAD SUNS

Bad Suns’ hit “Cardiac Arrest” seems to pop up everywhere. But unlike other summer jams that reach the inevitable ubiquity and backlash, Bad Suns have managed to craft a song that appeases both the pop crowd and the mainstream-averse demographic. As the main single off Language & Perspective, their debut album, “Cardiac Arrest” encapsulates nicely the group’s sound: meticulous, tight, and upbeat. The California quartet formed in 2012, spending the first few years touring and polishing their sound. What emerged

5 | ELEVEN PORTLAND | www.elevenpdx.com

being a rich badass: “My mouth is made of metal. . . Pockets full of gold. . . Chasin’ down the devil. . . I don’t owe you anything.” Hard core dudes, am I right? The EP’s closing track “Ghost” almost verges on the brink of being dubstep, with pulsating sub bass frequencies, but the track stays aligned to the band’s indie pop nature with a head-bobbing beat, cool synth, and gentle vocals.More recently, Sir Sly has released some remixes of their Gold EP, as well as one newer single, “Miracle,” that’s available for free download on their website. Kicking off a two month North American tour in August, the band will make a stop in the Rose City on August 8 at the Crystal Ballroom for just the second show of a long trip to come. Then again, there’s always Portland’s superb underground music scene for us to fall back on. » - Travis Leipzig from their experience is an album full of insanely catchy, backbeat-riding hooks. Lead vocalist Christo Bowman has the kind of voice that wouldn’t sound out of place in any of the post-punk groups that emerged in the ‘80s, but the Bad Suns’ unique blend of sounds is tailor-made for the soaring power of his vocal lines. Although the group’s overall sound skews more toward alt-rock, the group’s myriad influences are discernible through the individual pieces. Ray Libby’s guitar lines have a distinct West Coast flavor, often sprinkled with harmonics and subtle riffs that blend into the thudding bass supplied by Gavin Bennett. Drummer Miles Morris is tactful and on-point, slipping in tom fills to match his snare bursts and lending a much-needed edge to the tracks. “Dancing on Quicksand” is both a nice counterpart to “Cardiac Arrest” and an example of the group’s ability to invert its patterns to give tracks a unique sound. While many of their songs kick off with a strong guitar hook, “Dancing” leads with a solid bass riff complemented by a loopy guitar line and Bowman’s falsetto, which gives the song a weird and entertaining ‘80s dance vibe. When a group breaks through with a hit, it’s easy to miss the rest of its output. You may not be able to avoid the single on its own, but the Bad Suns’ ability to build out the rest of a solid album shows that these guys get it. It’s only going to get better. » - Charles Trowbridge


new music aural fix

AUGUST AT

1st

GENDERS NEW MADRID THE GHOST EASE

2nd THE CRASH ENGINE LUCY GRAY

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SHELTER RED

GIRAFFAGE

3rd PICKIN' ON SUNDAYS FEATURING BALTO CLAWFOOT SLUMBER

Charlie Yin provides creature comfort as San Francisco-based Giraffage. His affinity for mastering and mixing with soundboard gadgetry sparked a career of creative remixes and sampling nostalgic tracks over melody and tight drum machine percussion. He has put out a slew of remixes, such as Janet Jackson’s “Someone To Call My Lover,” as well as do-overs of songs by R. Kelly and The Dream. He also stars in many collaborations and production (XXYYXX,Teen Daze), and has a side project called Robot Science. His work is a bright and steady flow inside an ongoing dream. Needs, Yin's last album, is more heavily sampled and was created in what he says (on his Bandcamp site) were his “best of times and the worst of times.” Taking inspiration from late '70s and early '80s and '90s R&B, he spins tracks into a shuffled ambiance of desire and longing. He speeds up the vocals of Cathy Dennis’ 1990’s “Touch Me All Night Long” and then drops the track into a dark sludge for his “Close 2 Me.” Keith Sweat’s “Don’t Stop Your Love” warbles on “Thinking About You,” and

the track “Money” is softdubbed so that it somehow sounds like the words “honey” or “love me.” Using pieces of lyrics and tempo changes, he is able to detach the ideas of the minimalist originals and isolate them into his own emotional cache. » - Brandy Crowe

QUICK TRACKS A “feels” Exotic melody plays and builds behind long reverb, and different forms of percussion burst forth at every turn. Slowed down sampled lyrics croon: “You / with you / grow old with you” over and over.

B “all that matters” The beauty and turmoil of romance is navigated with heavy synths and drum snaps, keys, and various speeds on Ready For The World’s super thick slow dance jam from 1986, “Love You Down.” It’s complete with the natural sounds of birds singing.

3rd XIU XIU

CIRCUIT DES YEUX MARISA ANDERSON

18th BORIS

MARRIAGES MASTER MUSICIANS OF BUKKAKE

20th SPLIT SINGLE

FEATURING JASON NARDUCY, ERIK PAPPAROZZI, AND TIM REMIS WITH VERY SPECIAL GUESTS

21st SEAN FLINN & THE ROYAL WE CATALDO DUSTIN HAMMAN

4th HAMILTON LEITHAUSER

22nd DEAD WINTER CARPENTERS 23rd AMY RAY

5th DRENGE

24th PICKIN' ON SUNDAYS

AVID DANCER

WAX WITCHES

6th JAY FARRAR 7th HEAD FOR THE HILLS SWEET GHOSTS THE MOONSHINE

8th FERNANDO JEREMY WILSON

MICHAEL DEAN DAMRON

PHIL COOK (MEGAFAUN)

FEATURING

LEWI LONGMIRE AND ANITA LEE ELLIOT JENNY DON'T & THE SPURS

24th COMPETITIVE EROTIC FAN FICTION FEATURING SHANE TORRES, NATHAN BRANNON, BARBARA HOLM, AMY MILLER, JOANN SCHINDERLE AND MORE!

9th BLUE SKIES FOR BLACK HEARTS THE SINGLES

26th THE AFGHAN WHIGS

10th PICKIN' ON SUNDAYS FEATURING BEVELERS

28th STRAND OF OAKS

THE ZAGS

EZRA BELL REBECCA MARIE MILLER

10th THUMPERS 13th QUIET LIFE ARK LIFE

14th THE COATHANGERS

WHITE FANG / YOUR RIVAL

15th HOOK & ANCHOR HEARTS OF OAK WATER TOWER

16th BENJAMIN BOOKER 16th FUTURE ISLANDS 17th PICKIN' ON SUNDAYS FEATURING THE LOVE AND STRESS COMPOUND

JOSEPH ARTHUR

27th THE AFGHAN WHIGS JOSEPH ARTHUR

CHRISTOPHER DENNY

29th THE DREAM SYNDICATE THE MINUS 5 EYELIDS

30th MISSION OF BURMA THE WOOLEN MEN CHRIS BROKAW

31st PICKIN' ON SUNDAYS FEATURING

FEEDING FRENZY HIP HATCHET

31st YUNA

SHELBY EARL

GOOSE & FOX MBRASCATU

17th EL-P

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new music album reviews

ALBUM REVIEWS

late). Travis Coster’s voice is dark and sneering, but still somehow soothing. The title track is the best on the album—reverb-laden, with sharp guitar riffs over haunting vocals. It even has hints of the darkly melodic sounds of old metal or even the White Stripes. This is the band where your feet would stick to the floor as you stomped at some

This Month’s best

dive bar or house party.

R Reissue

With their loud live shows and

L Local release

and jarring guitars, this three-

Short List Bear In Heaven Time Is Over One Day Old

Naomi Punk Television Man Captured Tracks

one of the best bands coming out of the Northwest right now, but you wouldn’t know it by their

If there is such a genre as “noise

Spoon They Want My Soul

grunge,” Naomi Punk could fit into

The Gaslight Anthem Get Hurt

compartmentalized as one thing or

Wiz Khalifa Blacc Hollywood

piece from Olympia/Seattle is

it. This is a band that defies being another. They are just raw energy. Minimal and hard-driving, this trio

Cymbals Eat Guitars Lose

of vocals, guitar, and drums emits

J. Mascis Tied To A Star

(unlike some of the canned acts of

a coarse angst that feels genuine

The New Pornographers Brill Bruisers

sparse internet presence or the unavailability of their debut album. The secret may be out, however, with the release of Television Man. These guys are like minimalist artists doing things in their own seemingly simple way, but leaving a lasting impression on the audience. » - Scott McHale

regeneration. The album is frequently quite shocking, with O’Connor not

Ty Segall The Manipulator

holding back her disdain for the music business and those who’ve

The Murder City Devils The White Ghost Has Blood On Its Hands Again

wanted a piece of her fame rather than to know her for who she really

Twin Peaks Wild Onion

is. Moreover, she is very honest about her struggles with psychological

Beach Day Native Echoes

problems and her feelings of guilt from poor choices in the past.

Buy it

Steal it

Toss it

The album gets progressively

darker as she goes deeper into

Sinead O'Connor I'm Not Bossy, I'm The Boss Nettwerk Records

herself. “There’s no safety to be acquired in riding streetcars named desire,” she confesses. In the album, she explores her problems and fears,

Sinéad O’Connor’s new album I’m Not Bossy, I’m the Boss is pure fire. O’Connor has, over the years, been something of a trailblazer, using her fame as a vehicle for experiments bringing sean nós songs and reggae to a wider audience. I’m Not Bossy

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is heartfelt, excellently arranged and performed rock that brings with it powerful messages of spiritual

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and gives herself some solutions (but not in that order). This gives her new self some context for listeners. She has seen hard times, and vowing to find peace in herself (check “The Vishnu Room”) and to seek different relationships will bring her out of them. We can relate, and recommend this as a fine comeback. » - Matthew Sweeney


new music album reviews

The Rentals Lost in Alphaville Polyvinyl According to The Rentals’ official account of the recording process for Lost in Alphaville, when founder (and former Weezer bassist) Matt Sharp sent the final mix to his main collaborators, responses varied from “fuuuuccckkk” to “FUCK, FUUUCKK!!!” and a subtle “Fuck!” just to balance it out. A little bombastic? One would be allowed that opinion for a moment—until hearing the actual record,

Kimbra The Golden Echo Warner Bros. Records Maybe you haven’t heard of Kimbra before, but you’ve definitely heard Kimbra before. By luck and on recommendation her vocals ended up (standing out) on Gotye’s “Somebody That I Used to Know.” The 24-year-old Grammy winner is the best thing to come out of New Zealand since. . . well. . . ever? This girl will catch your attention before you even hear her open her big,

that is. Then, those responses might seem like a bit of an understatement. The group’s first album in 15 years does not disappoint. It is an intense, multilayered and dense collection of ear candy. Full of driving synth hooks, crashing guitars and lush vocals, Lost in Alphaville is continually surprising. It is a perfect example of seamless collaboration and creativity cranked to 11. When recording the album, Sharp worked with each contributor individually in order to encourage improvisation that played to each musician’s strength. Once each piece was finished, Sharp began the mixing, a process he describes as “euphoric,” saying he whipped himself into a “full-blown rapture.” This description is apt. Lost in Alphaville, from start to finish, is rapturous. It’s difficult to pick a defining track from the album, but the first single released to the public is “Thought of Sound,” a methodical explosion of dripping synths, buzzing guitars, and a grooving bass line. Really, though, this is the kind of record best enjoyed from

start to finish— and as loud as possible. The opening track, “It’s Time to Come Home,” rides a quivering guitar line over a thumping kick drum (courtesy of the Black Keys’ Patrick Carney) into a peak, accentuated by the stunning vocal interplay of Luscius’ Jess Wolfe and Holly Laessig. “Stardust,” the album’s third track, is a song about the transitory nature of being a human and dealing with a failed relationship. Wolfe sings “We’re all just like stardust / move along / There’s no one you can trust / move along,” and while that could be dismissive when matched with the rising tide of Ryen Slegr’s guitar line, it has a gravitas that grows with each proclamation. As with the album in general, “Stardust” surges and recedes, growing with oozing Moog interludes and falling back with humming guitar drones and subtle piano lines. It’s clear that as Sharp combined the disparate pieces into a coherent whole, he had a vision of attainable grandiosity. Lost in Alphaville is one of the most complete and impeccable albums of the year. » - Charles Trowbridge

beautiful, lipsticked mouth—or see the adorable, infectious smile she creates with it. She's a little Gaga/Santigoldesque in appearance, definitely Bjorklike ('I’ve gone to my happy place that’s not on Earth') in performance, and Tori Amos/Prince sounding in vocals. Kimbra will not waste any of your time, but rather enhance it through her obvious dedication to the craft. On the best day of the year, August 19, Kimbra gives America her second album, The Golden Echo, following 2011’s Vows. ‘Twas a bit of a wait, but long enough for her originality to stew, thus cultivating a dynamic masterpiece. By calling up the talents of composer Van Dyke Parks, Omar RodriguezLópez (The Mars Volta), Matt Bellamy (Muse), John Legend, Bilal and Mark Foster (Foster the People), just to name a few, she has leveled herself up both in production and songwriting. The musical depth of Echo is tightly weaved throughout twelve “prog-pop” songs. The first single, “90’s Music,” explores just that in the most nostalgic way possible. Having barely made

it to the track list, this song is fire, showcasing her style to the max. An achievement was unlocked as soon as DJ Shadow and Salva remixed it into a future/trap exploit that must be checked out after hearing the original. And “Goldmine” has a refrain and beat that you’ll be singing and turning up after just one listen: “I got a goldmine / it’s all mine / nobody can touch this gold of mine.” Kimbra is like a shooting star, and her collaborators’ work is like the tail, leaving their traces of magic all over the album. Addictive synth rifts kept me coming back to “Love in High Places” and “Rescue Him.” The album expertly moves between bouncy dance songs and super chill, smooth numbers—the former easily finding their way onto my ‘drive to the coast’ playlist with my girls. Maybe for a minute Kimbra was only known for being the female vocals on that one song. But now, with the release of The Golden Echo, she has very confidently released herself from and moved beyond that association. » - Kelly Kovl

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Genders | New Madrid | The Ghost Ease The Crash Engine | Lucy Gray | Shelter Red XIU XIU | Circuit Des Yeux | Marisa Anderson Hamilton Leithauser | Avid Dancer Drenge | Wax Witches Jay Farrar Head For The Hills | Sweet Ghosts | The Moonshine Fernando | Jeremy Wilson | Michael Dean Damron Blue Skies For Black Hearts | The Singles | The Zags Thumpers | Le Printemps Quiet Life | Ark Life The Coathangers | White Fang | Your Rival Hook & Anchor | Hearts Of Oak | Water Tower Future Islands EL-P | Tope Boris | Marriages | Master Musicians of Bukkake Split Single Sean Flin & The Royal We | Cataldo | Dustin Hamman Dead Winter Carpenters Amy Ray | Phil Cook The Afghan Whigs | Joseph Arthur Strand Of Oaks | Christopher Denny The Dream Syndicate | The Minus 5 | Eyelids Mission Of Burma | The Woolen Men | Chris Brokaw Yuna | Shelby Earl

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Roseland Theater

Morgan Page | Jamie Meushaw & Eddie Pitzul Fiji | Drew Deezy | Ras Kimo | Steady Riot | Flava C Dirty Heads/Pepper | Katastro Cam'Ron | Cool Nutz Porter Robinson | Giraffage | Lemaitre

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Echo & The Bunnymen Imelda May Sir Sly | Mother Reckless Kelly | Micky & The Motorcars | The Departed The Parson Redheads Present: Songs From The Canyon Slint Negativeland | Daniel Menche | Cascadian Knights Brand New | Joyce Manor | Broncho

mississippi studios 3939 n mississippi

Free Salamander Exhibit/Dead Rider Yonatan Gat | The We Shared Milk | Don't Clap Your Hands Say Yeah | Alec Ounsworth Nick Thune Deep Fried Boogie Band | Audios Amigos | Spectrum Control 5PM - Bad Suns | Kiev 10PM - Dan Deacon | Phone Call | Hustle & Drone Josh Abbott Band | Adam Craig | Rich O'Toole Like A Villain | Tender Forever | Arrington de Dionyso The Strumbellas | McDougall Big Sam's Funky Nation | Farnell Newton Cahalen Morrison & Country Hammer | Lone Madrone Mimicking Birds | The Verner Pantons Jerry Joseph & The Jackmormons A Year Afar | Morning Ritual | Timmy Straw Us Lights | Hosannas | Yeah Great Fine TJO | Key Losers | Lavender Mirror Wade Bowen | Sean McConnell Petunia & The Vipers | Mustered Courage Natasha Kmeto | Devonwho | IBQT Kawehi | Matt Brown Avey Tare's Slasher Flicks | Raleigh Moncrief The Entrance Band/Jacco Gardner | Grandparents Jessica Hernandez & The Deltas | Charts SOS | Tope | Stewart Villain Ana Tijoux

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live AUGUST wonder ballroom 128 ne russell

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Us The Duo Groundation | Indubious | Rising Buffalo Tribe The Mighty Mighty Bosstones | The Interrupters Sylvan Esso | Dana Buoy The English Beat

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J-Cush | Massacooramaan | DJ Rafael | DJ Portia Maxx Bass | Nathan Detroit | Ryan & Dimitri Jordan Dykstra | Tom Blood | Allie Hankins | Jason Traeger Lilacs & Champagne | Hosannas | Philip Grass Pop+Puppetry:PWRHAUS|SarahJacksonHolman|MojaveBird Trippy Turtle | Gang$ign$ | Chrome Wolves | DVST | Lil Clark Vanilla Ace | Ben Tactic | Break Mode | Coast2C Doubleplusgood | Gold Casio | Small Skies Holla n Oats | Lincolnup | Commune Rockbox: DJ Kez | Matt Nelkin Gaycation: Mr. Charming | DJ Snowtiger Black Kids | Mackintosh Braun | Fringe Class Club Chemtrail: SPF666 | Commune DJs Kiffo & Rymes | DJ Lightyear | Dylan Stark & Ben Johnson Beautiful Swimmers | Maxx Bass | Lincolnup | Ben Tactic How To Dress Well | DJ Portia Laid Out: Gossip Cat | Pocket Rock-it | Misti Miller Snap! 90s Dance: DR. Adam | Colin Jones | Freaky Outty #BAEAREA: DJ Izm | Danny Merkury

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Minden | Dual Mode Wooden Indian Burial Ground | Cambrian Explosion | Soft Lit Party Damage Records Showcase

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Dinner and Live Bluegrass (Thursdays) White Bear Polar Tundra | Ujjayi Soundsystem The Vandies | DJ Jesse Espinoza Crow & The Canyon | DJ Rhienna ADDverse Effects | DJ Easter Egg Eric John Kaiser Buddy Jay's Jamaican Jazz Band | DJ Kenny Samuel Krulewitch | DJ Gregarious Brad Parsons Band Kory Quinn Hot Club Time Machine

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Comedy Open Mic (every Sunday) Eye Candy VJ’s (every Monday) Open Mic (every Monday 8pm) Ultra Goat | Order Of The Gash | Cascadian Hideous Racket w/DJ Flight Risk Frizz | Private Boat Wild & Scenic | The Wails Great Wilderness | A Seasonal Disguise | Day Moanstar Johnny & The Bells | Neighbor Wave | Future Historians The We Shared Milk | Souvenir Driver | Old Age Pine Levon's Helmet | Mr. Bones | The Vandies Queen Chief Baby Ketten Karaoke KPSU DJs Half Brother | Bed | Violent Psalms Lil Ass Boom Box Festival Cory Tonna Loser Boyfriend | Sioux Falls

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features AUGUST bunk bar

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Crocodiles | Tweens | Appendixes Wimps | Lunch | The Rat | Mope Grooves Panther | Copy | E*Rock Terry Malts | Girl Tears The Rosebuds | El May

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Mammoth Salmon | Disenchanter | Paranaut SprayPaint|TheWoolenMen|HoneyBucket|PennyMachine Sex Crime | Thee Headliners | Dark/Light Beta Boys | Dirty Work | Crime Zone | PMS 84 Underground Railroad To Candyland | White Night Zig Zags | Ex-Cult | Eternal Tapestry Talkative | Bleach Blonde Dudes | Ghost Frog Stoneburner | Hungers | Sol Kuudes Silma | Maailmanloppu | Arctic Flower Blank Pages | Bellicose Minds | Vicious Pleasures Mascaras | Gang Cult | Killer Ghost | Dottie Attie Volver Green Beret | Koward | Frenzy Amanda X | Beach Day Divers | Nato Coles & The Blue Diamond Band Hang The Old Year | The Hague | Sabonis Thirsty City: Live Hip-Hop/Beats + DJ Night Tele Novella | Psychomagic | The Dandelyons Mongoloid Smoke Rings | Arc Ov Light | Force Publique

LOCAL FEATURE

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Souvenir Driver | Kate Tucker & The Sons Of Sweden Chris Marshall & The August Light | St. Even The Barn Door Slammers The Moonshine | Br'er Rabbit | The Gagshakers Baby & The Pearl Blowers Papa Dynamite & The Jive

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Singer Songwriter Showcase (Mondays) Atlas & The Astronaut | Moon Debris | Violent Psalms Chuck Prophet & The Midnight Express The Mama Rags | Foxy Lemon | Spirit Lake The Junebugs Fret Drifters Ill Lucid Onset Kool Stuff Katie | Supercrow Celeste Amadee | Elise Leblanc | Libbie Schrader Ken Chapple | Chris Bigley Cooper & The Jam Liam Finn When We Met | Small Million | No More Parachutes Luz Elena Mendoza The Last Callers Byron Blocker & Friday Elliott | Michael Kennedy Half Way There | Dangerous Gentlemen Pony Village | The Greaking | Alexander Tragedy You Knew Me When | Willow Grove

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ith a proper Portland mustache and wearing flannel, at first sight Sapient could be a banjo player in a local indie-folk group instead of the experienced hip-hop veteran that he is. Even if he weren't a talented creator in nearly every aspect of his craft, Sapient would be an authentic testament to the cultural permeation of rap. Operating out of Portland for years alongside other gifted MCs under the Sandpeople moniker, he has built a following through consistent releases, tours, and collaborations. His most recent album, Eaters Vol. 2: Light Tiger, has been garnishing praise since its June debut, and is the catalyst for a western tour with Illmaculate, which kicked off at Mississippi Studios. ELEVEN had the chance to speak with Sapient before he left about what it takes to be a successful DIY musician. ELEVEN: When did you start making music? SAPIENT: I was always around a lot of music. Both my parents are musical. My mom’s more classically

Photo by Mercy McNab

trained and does violin and piano, and my Dad’s just kind of like—you know—plays guitar and is more selftaught and is into rock. I’ve always been around guitars and and piano, but never had lessons or anything. I didn’t know if it was something I was inclined to or not. It was sorta just always around, you know? After I started getting guitar, I started to get into more stuff. I’d smoke weed and play guitar *laughs* but never take it too seriously. But then, when I really fell in love with hip-hop and starting doing it that way. . . I don’t recall the first thought that happened—I don’t have that on memory. I just started making hip-hop with my own tape deck. I had a tape deck and stuff, a little 8-track. I remember getting into hip-hop around end of middle school or the start of high school, and I kind of started free-styling with friends like everyone does. And I’d download these beats off of Napster that I liked, and I would kinda like write these raps. I don’t remember exactly, but maybe like sophomore year or something like that. I would have my CD players pointed with the burned instrumentals of the beat,


and my tape deck had a microphone. And so I’d let the instrumental play and hit record and try to find the right distance and volume to mix. I made a bunch of tapes like that and didn’t know anything about song structure. I was just rapping and doing my thing. I really started to get tech when I would go through and use the CD player’s tape deck to play the backup vocals that had been recorded through the first time— record that, then play it back together with the main vocal again. The sound would get significantly worse, and that’s when I started to doing some research to get a little 8-track with a guitar, drum machine and stuff. I made like six albums in high school that I don’t want to see the light of day. I just became a fiend for it. 11: Have you been able to make art your only job? S: I sell beats, and do mixing and mastering, cover art, and illustration commissions. It’s just because they’re usually fans of my music. It’s all still part of my craft. It’s not like I dig ditches or anything. I’m trying to narrow the spectrum. It starts to take over and that hurts the music. I kinda got into that. My kids are little and it’s hard to leave when you’re trying to develop that close bond. It’s very important to be home. My oldest just turned five and my youngest just turned one. So, you know, I haven’t really toured much. I’ve eased off a bit. 11: What’s your end goal with balancing work and family?

features AUGUST SLABTOWN

1033 NW 16TH

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The Sidekicks | Sundials | Dowsing | The Oddly Hot Betrayed By Weakness | Proven | Apothesary Tim The Walrus | Hillsboro | The Taste Carrion Spring | Muscle & Marrow | Sky Above/Earth Below Ian & The Crushers | WNBA Jam | Wormbag White Chocolate & The Cigaretts | ManX | Pass Dropdead | Bell Witch | Noisem | Ephemeros | Bastard Feast The Members | No Problem | The Chemicals | Lunch Carousel Kings | For The Win | Grizzly | Hollywise

alhambra theatre 4118 se hawthorne

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Courtney John Project Cage | Sadistik | Maulskull Soulja Boy | Malik | Yung Mil | Get It Squad | Dubz Thrid World Israel Vibration Charm City Devils Blackalicious

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RX Bandits | The Dear Hunter | From Indian Lakes Foxy Shazam | Stop Light Observations | Marca Luna Like Moths To Flames | Palisades | Elitist | Divides I Declare War | Barrier | Invent, Animate | Colliding Fates Chimaira | The Plot In you | Allegaeon | Fighting Silence Jukebox Heroes | Heart-Beat | 90 Proof We Rise The Tides | Subtle City | Like Vultures | Lavoe Liz Vice | Brownish Black | Speaker Minds | The Get Ahead The Faceless | Rings Of Saturn | Archspire | Fallujah

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MOLOKO

Photo by Ryan Dornfeld

S: I’m not trying to write a hit in the sense of commercial radio or whatever. As far as success, I don’t really have numbers or the end result. It’s a tricky, psychological thing. There’s the motivational aspect: that if you stick to this, you should be to 'here.' But at the same time, I have to stay focused with being happy with the success I do have. Even though it’s crazy at times, and the scramble, with money coming in from different directions, and my financial responsibilities are heavy. . . sometimes it doesn’t feel like gaining, you know what I mean? Especially when I see peers living out on the road and doing what you have to do. For me, making the choice to be at home with my family, I know staying at home is the most important. I don’t want to get into a weird vortex and then it affects the music. I don’t want to go down the path of thinking about writing songs that would be a success—that’s not why I got into

Taste the nightlife of Mississippi. Over 40 house infused liquors. Specialty absinth cocktails. Open until 2am every day. N PORTLAND 3967 N Mississippi (97227) 503.288.6272 molokopdx.com

19 ALADDIN THEATER 3017 SE MILWAUKIE 20 VALENTINES

232 SW ANKENY

Hatef: Live In Concert Southern Culture On The Skids The Both: Featuring Aimee Mann & Ted Leo

EAST END

203 SE GRAND

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He Whose Ox Is Gored | Muscle & Marrow | Chasma Dottie Attie | Talk Sick Brats | Way To Go Genious Red Shadows | Penny Machine | Sloppy Kisses | DJ SG Elbo Room Xeno & Oakland | White HEx | Soft Metals Communion Of Thieves | Night Nurse | Satanarchist Egg & I | Charlie Copeland & The Blankets | Ghost Frog The Cry | Dirty Denim | The Bricks Vice Device | XDS | Smoke Rings | Draft Dodgers Rabbits | Honduran | Diesto | Towers Gladius | World Of Lies | Eukaryst | Godenied Votive | Walking Stalking Robots | Super Desu Band 185668232 | Non Duality | Darkswoon Devilwood | Bath Party | Cambrian Explosion | Tamed West Die Robot | Force Publique | Ghost Motor | Scorpion Warrior Shadowhouse | Infidel | Lunch | Dead Cult Arcane Machine | Jerkagram | Galatea | Mothers Whiskey Is/Is | Lubec | Fine Pets | Still Caves Old Light | Temple Pale Soul | Haunted Spaceship | Bomb Ass Pussy

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features AUGUST the goodfoot

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Sonic Forum Open Mic Night (Mondays) Boyz II Gentlemen (Tuesdays) Shafty: Phish Tribute Band (Wednesdays) Soul Stew w/ DJ Aquaman (Fridays) Sambada Radula Jon Cleary Trio | The Goodfoot All-Stars Brad Parsons | Lewi Longmire | The Hill Dogs Eldridge Gravy & The Court Supreme Naive Melodies | Earphunk Polecat | The Student Loan Andy Coe Band | Stephen's Answer

owl social club 23 white 1305 se 8th 10 Dropping Gems Showcase 22 The Lonesome Billies | Divers | Morons 23 Dam Funk | Supreme La Rock | JT Donaldson | Zernell

theater 24 star 13 nw 6th

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Spindrift Murder City Devils | Constant Lovers | Corey J. Brewer Micah Schnabel | Michael Dean Damron | Bill Wadhams Halo Refuser | Takimba | Guda | Ninjamonk International Pop Overthrow Festival Pitchblack Brass Band | Cherimoya | Bridgetown Brass 30-31 Reverend Horton Heat | Piñata Protest THE FIRKIN TAVERN Located on the west side of Ladd’s, the Firkin Tavern features an astounding selection of craft beers to enjoy inside or on our patio. Art enthusiasts will enjoy a variety of local artwork on display and sold comission-free! SE LADD'S 1937 SE 11th Ave (97214) 503.206.7552 | thefirkintavern.com

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Tommy Alto Never Awake Necktie Killer | Muffaluffagus | Toucan Sam & The Fruit Loops Plaid Daggers | 9 Road | Zero Season | The Requisite Bouyant Sea Sphynx Boat Race Weekend Natural Remedy Pray For Locust | Blood & Thunder | Othrys | Within Sight Abja & The Lionz Of Kush | Danny I | The Rising Buffalo Tribe LiquidLight | La Fin Absolute du Monde | Candy Cigarettes The Vandies Item 9 | The Sindicate | The Brickers

26 ROTTURE/BRANX 315 SE 3rd

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Gorgon City Beardyman Sons Of Huns | Arctic | R.A.W. Jamie XX The Classic Crime | How To Build A Fire | Fast Fox City Nightclub Reunion

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Deathblow | Gomorrah | Sexxxpanther | Gorgon Stare Sharks From Mars | The Decliners | Die Robot | Bad Move Erik Anarchy | Mr Plow | Chase The Snakes | Secnd Best All Hail The Yeti | Witchburn Nun Hunter | The Drip | Bone Sickness | Splatterhouse Bunk Dope | Headless Pez | Cemetery Lust | Blood Freak The Mercury Tree | Tommy Alto | Jesus Miranda

13 | ELEVEN PORTLAND | www.elevenpdx.com

Photo by Ryan Dornfeld

music, and that’s not what people like about me. But basically, the end goal would be to tour once or twice a year and still be able to paint for fun and still be able to take care of my family. I think it’s right around the corner. I just want to be able to relax a little more, you know? 11: How did your song about Macklemore come about?

S: We’re, like, music scene friends. We’ve done some songs together and stuff. It’s all just tongue and cheek. Some people say it’s hating, but not at all. I like to see him be successful, much more than most of these people that are famous. Macklemore can spit. You could see him be a little less communicative, though. I texted him during the Grammy’s, and before I’d always hit him up about new videos


features AUGUST dantes

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Jacob Miller & The Bridge City Crooners 3 Bushwalla 4 My Life In Black And White | Get Dead | The Brass 8 Whitey Morgan & The 78's 9 Wild Bill | Neon Culpa | Caskitt 16 Murder City Devils | Deep Creep | Corey J. Brewer 17 International Pop Overthrow Festival 20-22 Floater 23 The Sindicate | Valley Green | Chris Carpenter Collective 28 Federale | 1939 Ensemble | Donovan Breakwater 29 Corrosion Of Conformity | Bl"ast | Brant Bjork | Lord Dying 30

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Sam Densmore Slim Bacon | Wooden Sleepers | Whitebulbs Sam Densmore Foxy Lemon

the waypost 2120 n williams

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and stuff and he’d hit me back. That’s why there’s that line “I texted Macklemore / he don’t text me back no more.” And everyone’s like, "fuck that blah blah blah," but it’s not like that. We were music homies, but there are a lot of people that are much closer to him. Obviously it’d be cool to go on tour with him, which is why I joke about that. But, it’s not like. . . I mean, as soon as he blew up I’m sure all the parasites came in. So I don’t hold it against him at all. It’s all very precise what they did—he filled that hole in the industry that needed him and that’s pretty amazing. But, you know, it’s hard when the babies are screaming and I’m stressing about money to see him on tour and think— ”I used to play in bars with that dude.” Yeah. 11: Where do you think the industry and scene are going in the Pacific Northwest? S: I feel optimistic about it, for sure. The industry and doing it yourself kinda overlap. It’s so broken apart in so many ways. You can hire people just like a label can. If you just have a credit card or some money—a label just hires a publicist and puts money into things. So, I do feel optimistic about the industry, and not just hip-hop. It’s not just suits deciding what’s good. Obviously

there’s still Pitbull featuring Ke$ha and stuff. I don’t think the industry’s ever going to make a huge turn to where suddenly what I’m doing is the thing. People who like music like Pitbull and Ke$ha, it’s not like they just like different music, they like it for a different reason. They want to move to it. They don’t care what the words are. They just want to move to it. And that’s fine. But the art is, like, tricking people to dance. I guess that’s how I see the industry. But I do feel positive. I mean, someone like Macklemore being one of the most prominent people. . . he doesn’t have a label or whatever. He doesn’t rap super simple or in some corny way like other people do. 11: What do you hope people get out of listening to your music? S: I don’t know. Whatever they want. When I make something, there’s something that, with all of my music, tickles me in a certain way. Even if it’s really simple, like a drum beat that you can nod your head to. . . but it pacifies you on a certain level, like a visceral level that you respond to. Some people are drawn to it. »

Find more from Sapient at www.sapientkills.com

A not-for-profit organization whose mission is to entertain, inspire, educate and connect the community through the art of film while preserving an historic Portland landmark. NE HOLLYWOOD 4122 NE Sandy Blvd (97212) 503.493.1128 | hollywoodtheatre.org

Laurelthirst pub 2958 ne glisan

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Freak Mountain Ramblers (Sundays) Kung Pow Chickens (Mondays) Jackstraw (Tuesdays) Tree Frogs | Baby Gramps Amanda Richards & The Good Long Whiles | Ripe Red Apple Mark MacMinn | Katelyn Convery Mimi Naja & Ben Larsen Three For Silver | Lizzie Kerr Dept. Of Gold | Pretend Sweethearts Little Sue "Shine" Band | Corner Lesser Bangs | Stephan's Answer Barleywine Revue | Joey Beats Brady | Willbach & Trowbridge Old Flames | Ural Thomas & Joe McMurrian Christy Hays | Anna Tivel Lewi & The Left Coast Roasters | Matty Charles Alice Stuart Pagan Jug Band Simon Tucker Blues Band Jamie Leopold & The Short Stories Down Home Music | Jeff Crosby & The Refugees The Yellers | Kalida | Feeding Frenzy Lynn Conover Benefit

analog cafe & Theater 720 se hawthorne

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Bullet Made Statues Katie Ann | MC Zill | Laura Cooper | Pending Black Tribalessence Portland Psych Fest Nouveu-Expo | Cory Tonna | Wingnut Commander Taste For Bass School Of Rock: Weezer vs. Blink182 Bone Thugs & Harmony | Layzie Bone Dubz DJ Anjali & The Incredible Kid Redneck Soldier Presents End Of Summer Dayz Quiet Morning & The Calamity

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Photo by Marc Lemoine


features national scene

Photo by Katie Summer

S

ometimes your craft develops in ways you never thought imaginable. Sometimes it's out of our inner darkness and the muck of our lives that leads to understanding, salvation and a greater curiosity towards truth, whatever the hell that means. That's precisely what happened to Pete Silberman and The Antlers. What started out as a place to create works based on internal and external conflicts eventually grew into a beautiful musical endeavor. Silberman self-released his first nine track album Uprooted in 2006 and followed up with a second release In the Attic of the Universe on Fall Records in 2007. The Antlers then expanded, adding members Michael Lerner on drums and Darby Cicci on synths, trumpet and upright/electric bass. The band released Hospice in 2009 and a remastered re-release was put out by Frenchkiss Records the same year. Burst Apart, the band's fourth studio album was released in 2011 with critical acclaim across the board, including the likes of The Guardian and The New York Times. The Antlers bring us their latest release and fifth studio album on ANTI- Records, Familiars. We now join Pete Silberman as he catches up with good friend and Purse Candy frontman, Matthew Ellis. ELEVEN: Now that you’ve released Familiars and have been touring it, are you eager to write and perform new stuff?

Pete Silberman: Yeah, definitely, I’m already at the point of wanting to be writing more, but I think I was at that point towards the end of making this record. I reach a point when a project is getting into its finishing stages when I start just thinking about making something completely different, probably just as a result of sitting with something for too long. Now that the record has been done for a long time and now that we’re touring it, I’m definitely jonesing to be making new stuff. 11: The difference between writing an album when it’s just yourself, and actually having a band that is a part of it, what are your thoughts on that situation? PS: I think it’s just two really different beasts. When you’re writing by yourself, you have complete control over every part of it, which is good in some ways but in other ways it’s not so good. I think that’s good if you have a very clear vision of something and you feel like you need to control all of it in order for it to be perfect, but if you’re looking to expand and broaden your own creativity, sometimes it really helps to be working with other people. They’ll challenge you and force you to defend your ideas and you’ll also get different ideas from the ideas that they come up with. I don’t always like being the starting point of a song, sometimes I like for somebody else to present something like a drum pattern or something like that, and then that gives me

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features national scene the chance to [expand upon it]. It’s hard to create something from nothing. I find that if there is a bit of something in place, it becomes a loose framework to jump off of. I think both are really great but it’s all about where you’re at in time and there’s something about developing chemistry with other people and creative chemistry that I think can be really good for your own creativity.

has been enacted ten thousand years ago that we own the Earth, that the Earth belongs to us, that we’re supposed to be in charge of saving all these endangered animals and really what we’ve done is we’ve come in and changed the order of the way that the world has been working for billions of years. Every chance we get we kind of curbed death and in that way we’ve kind of stopped our evolution, it’s really interesting and it all comes from the perspective of this gorrilla. *laughs*

11: Are you reading any good books right now? PS: Yes, I’m reading a couple books right now. I just finished The Yoga Sutras [of Patanjali] which was very interesting and out there, and now I’m reading a short book by Alan Watts, who has become my favorite author of the moment. I’m reading a book called On The Taboo Against Knowing Who You Are, it’s pretty interesting. He’s definitely got a way with words and a very approachable way of explaining very slippery subjects such as existence and the nature of the universe and non-Western perceptions of the universe. I started reading [Ishmael] and didn’t get super far in it because I was reading something else that I was more into at the time but I was curious what you thought of it. 11: It kind of changed my perspective in a pretty big way. It shows how western culture has this whole perspective on us being entitled to the earth and kind of how it’s a story that

17 | ELEVEN PORTLAND | www.elevenpdx.com

PS: Yeah I got to the point of the gorilla and I actually really liked it, I don’t know why I put it down but I’ll have to check it out. 11: What was the book that you were reading at the same time? PS: I probably told you about some of it when we were hanging out last summer, I think I had just read Be Here Now which was hugely influential on what I was writing and I just read Island which was a [friend’s] recommendation. It was really eye-opening, I love that book. I actually read it for a second time a couple months ago. I was reading some Joseph Campbell, which I feel like that kind of got me started on this track of a lot of stuff I got into after the fact. I think I was learning to meditate at the time so I was reading a bunch of different texts and books about meditation, I don’t remember what they are now but they


features national scene were the preliminary things that I started reading and then decided along the way that the were not the right references for me, they were a style of mantra meditation that was a good gateway into it but then I realized that style wasn’t working for me and I moved into mindfulness in meditation so I guess that would have been Jon Kabat-Zinn that I was reading a little bit after I last saw you. 11: You pretty much had all of the songs in demo form then, right? And just had to go record them? PS: Kinda. There was a framework for all of these songs sitting around for a long time and I was writing and rewriting lyrics up until the very end of it. I would think of them as doing a sweep through a song, I would know that there would be this many bars in the verse, because there’s not a lot of choruses or refrains on the record, mostly long verses, but I would go right through it and then sit with that for a little bit and then I would rewrite it entirely again and I probably did that thirty times per song and towards then end started doing these really minute edits on things so I’m not sure back in the summer it probably read a lot differently than it did by the end of it. I got very meticulous with the way that I would edit, because I became sort of obsessive with past tense and present tense and future tense and how changing that in a song, little words and tenses, totally changed the meaning of what you’re trying to say. I think because so much of the record for me was an attempt to become more present in my life, that it needed to begin in past tense and move into present tense as it got toward the end of the record. 11: It’s got a lot of narrative. That’s why I asked about Joseph Campbell, there are little lines here and there where I though, “Oh he was totally on that.” PS: *laughs* Yup, yup. He had a way of injecting these quick lines of his own poetry into these long passages which kind of cut things up in a way that I was very drawn to. He could summarize a very long point he was making with two lines, which were beautiful and sometimes a little bit saccharine but just enough to get a warmth across. 11: I think the album has that, which is awesome. What is the next thing for you to research and dive into? PS: It’s really hard for me to say. I kind of feel like I’m on a path now. Once you start getting into Eastern thought or philosophy or religion, there’s just so much to learn. It’s a pretty deep tradition and right now I just kind of find it all fascinating. I’ve been reading some of the sacred texts of Buddhism and Hinduism. I’m finding that stuff takes me a while to parse through but I’m getting a lot from very small amounts of it. I always enjoy reading the Westerners that brought stuff to the West from the East, like Alan Watts being a good example of someone who was very good at translating those ideas that were very foreign to western culture. Things like Zen and The Eternal Now and things like that. Him and Ram Dass, another one of those people who very intuitively knew how to speak

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features national scene about that kind of thing. So, I’m still exploring a lot of that. I’ve also gotten very into reading about… a lot of my favorite writers happen to have been involved in a lot of acid tests in the fifties and sixties and wrote about it very eloquently and I just find it interesting to read Aldous Huxley's take on that what happens to his mind when he’s tripping on acid, and not in a, “ohh it’s fun to read about drugs,” they’re really describing this other plane of existence, and these other dimensions of the mind and of reality and it’s stuff that’s very hard to describe. Some of these people had a talent for it and they were able to help expand consciousness of that period of time and I think I’m just gravitating toward that stuff because it feels like there’s a pretty major change of consciousness happening at this point in time and I feel like there’s some parallels and I’m trying to wake myself up to it. 11: To me it seems the only way we can progress is by inspiring each other and somehow finding hope somewhere. PS: Totally. To act on a large scale feels unweildy so I feel like the best you can try and do is just try to be good and kind and attentive to people in your immediate vicinity and however far that can reach, you know, that’s all the better but it kind of starts at the micro level. 11: Career-wise, where would you be pumped to go next? PS: I don’t know. I honestly don’t know. Something I’ve realized is that I have no desire to cross over into the mainstream. Which is the goal of a lot of, weirdly, that seems to be the goal of a lot of indie music, is to break through into the mainstream and I can definitely see why that would be appealing to a lot of people and on the surface it’s obviously appealing because you could financially do better and make more of a name for yourself, play bigger shows, sell more records, all of that. It opens a lot of doors and opportunities but I don’t think that’s really where I belong. I think what I want to do next is just create and create and create and I want to make a lot of records and make a lot of music and work on a lot of projects and just try and get closer to… I feel like creative pursuits have become this ever changing search for truth (whatever the fuck that means), and I sometimes feel like I’m getting closer to it. And I kind of just want to keep going and keep experimenting and challenging myself. 11: You guys are coming to Portland and playing. PS: We did Musicfest a few years ago and it was a different kind of festival back then, more of a South By [South West] kind of thing, so it sounds like it’s a bit different now, but I think it’s going to be cool. It sounds like it’s a pretty good lineup and the location is pretty sweet too. »

The Antlers play Musicfest Northwest August 17 19 | ELEVEN PORTLAND | www.elevenpdx.com


film

WATCH ME NOW

FILM AND TELEVISION

FILM EDITORIAL

COST IN TRANSLATION: SUMMER BLOCKBUSTERS IN A GLOBALIZED WORLD written by Patrick Duncan

Summer comes with many things: heat induced fever dreams, fruit cocktails, long nights, and summer blockbusters. Each year, the bones of the film industry rattle with hope in an attempt to tantalize our minds and wallets with big action, big comedy, or big tears. Summer movie season entered the pop culture lexicon with gusto in

Illustration by Josh Burd

the late 1970s with two little films called Jaws in 1975 and Star Wars in 1977. Later, showmen like The Scotts (Tony and Ridley respectively), Jerry Bruckheimer, Roland Emmerich— and everyone’s favorite disaster porn impresario Michael Bay—would churn out entertaining if somewhat creatively bankrupt hits. Interestingly enough, as the American movie market navigates an uncertain future, blockbuster exports are going gangbusters overseas. It begs the question: how does globalization affect the financial and creative life of this genre? Superhero films have become the touchstone against which all summer blockbusters are measured. One example of the trajectory of superhero films in the aughts was Sam Raimi’s Spider-Man trilogy. 2002’s Spider-Man was a critical and commercial success that helped kick off the superhero resurgence of the 2000s, following the release of X-Men and paving the way for 2005’s Batman Begins. It was succeeded two years later by Spider-Man 2—critically acclaimed and another financial home-run. For the third in the SpiderMan trilogy, financial expectations were high—yet it landed on a flat note. Singled out for particular derision was a now-infamous sequence in which Tobey Maguire’s Peter Parker performs a dance in a jazz club: a little bit tango, a little bit Flashdance. At one point, the force of his gaze blows a woman’s hair back when he makes eye-contact. American audiences were baffled. Critics were divided. Yet, the film made well over 100 million dollars more in the overseas markets than any of the previous Spider-Man films had, even as the US receipts took a tumble. Here’s the thing about that dance sequence: it wasn’t meant for us. For the last decade, the US film market has grown incrementally at best, much of that growth being due to rising ticket prices. The foreign market, however, is expanding rapidly, up by 30% or more in the last few years alone, and Hollywood has taken notice. What seemed to most American viewers an awkward non sequitur was in fact Hollywood courting Bollywood; Peter Parker’s tango was a harbinger of things to come as the studios are forced to seriously consider what overtures to other cultures will reap the largest gains. Explosions translate. Children’s movies translate—some of the biggest international hits of the past few years include Toy Story 3 and Frozen, animated

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film

movies that are easy to dub into other languages and which by and large deal with easily understood, universal themes. Heroes and villains exist in all cultures, and those narratives travel easily across borders. There is a twofold change occurring—the first of which is the ways that the increasingly interconnected global economy begins to bear on the films we get to see. Movies reflect our culture back to us, and comedy, with the exception of slapstick, is firmly rooted in culture. Romantic comedies do an especially poor job of translating across cultural lines, but the problem is widespread. “I’ll have what she’s having.” “That’s what she said.” Woody Allen’s cerebral confections of intellectual in-jokes and Borscht Belt banter. The question is no longer “But will it play in Peoria?” but “Will it play in Peking?” It’s not as though comedic films will cease to exist, of course. Rising costs of production and promotion make the major studios increasingly risk-averse, and comedy is just the latest genre the studios are abandoning in order to get ahead in the global marketplace. Instead of the big-budget star comedy vehicles of the '90s and early aughts, the American comedy tradition will move on in the world of independent film—while the tentpole films of summer get bigger, louder, and more repetitive. A second and perhaps more interesting happening is the dismantling of the century-old facade of good ol’ American cultural imperialism. After decades of being able to disperse American films into the world with no real cause to look at it in other cultural contexts, our product has to be evaluated through other eyes now. Like the lamb burger at a McDonald’s in India or poutine at an Arby’s in Canada, American purveyors have been adjusting their product to international markets. Movies, though, are a shared experience, a single product sent out into the world. Filmmakers must either flatten the story into a form as basically understandable as possible (good vs evil, boy gets girl), and/or somehow make a film that can stand up to multiple gazes, multiple ways of seeing. One of the most interesting examples happened just recently with the release of Iron Man 3. Chinese celebrities were cast in small parts that were then expanded for the Chinese release of the film, and the villain of the film—Chinese in the original comics—was instead played by Ben Kingsley as a sort of Orientalist mélange. The film went on to make over a billion dollars worldwide, 800 million of that coming from overseas markets. Was it polished? No. It is garish (especially in the light of the blatant Chinese product placement that squeezed into those expanded scenes), and it's seen as a cynical grab for cash—one that worked out so well that Transformers 4 is attempting a similar path, casting Chinese actors in supporting roles and then heavily promoting them in China. A globalized flow of art, ideas, and commodities is the norm. And like many other industries, film studios are taking note. Hiring local actors, even making an effort to be culturally sensitive in a blockbuster comic book movie—these are things that no studio would have thought to do just a decade ago. »

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film

Instant Queue Review Many thanks to my guest writer this issue, Patrick Duncan! Summer blockbuster season is upon us. I personally try to avoid them in the theaters, but it's fun to watch from the comfort of your own home, away from the masses. » - Rachael Haigh

WORLD WAR Z (MARC FOSTER) A visceral zombie epidemic film that doubles as another attempt to build Brad Pitt as an action star. Worth watching if you have or have not read the book it was based on. Pitt has an undeniable appeal, but the zombie menace becomes a bit convoluted. Worth a watch in the canon of zombie films.

STAR TREK: INTO DARKNESS

(J.J. ABRAMS)

The second installment in J.J. Abrams’ reboot, and this time Benedict Cumberbatch is here! I find this one particularly better than the first, and let's hope the third continues the trend.

THE OCTAGON

(ERIK KARSON)

This film is amazing. Chuck Norris, as is his wont, is the only one who can stop a group of terrorist ninjas who have been menacing a wealthy woman. Fun fact: Chuck Norris’ son plays a younger version of him in the film.

making waves at Portland State since 1994

KPSU

Portland’s College Radio broadcasting 24/7 at kpsu.org

www.elevenpdx.com | ELEVEN PORTLAND | 22


community literary arts

LITERARY ARTS

Photo by Mercy McNab

Portland poet Ross Robbins

R

oss Robbins looks up as if his answer is scribed on the ceiling before locking into my eyes, “I write to express what it is like to be alive. To be a person. Because it’s the best way I’ve found to communicate how I’m feeling to other human beings.” Ross grew up on a cattle ranch in Montana. He was a country boy who was “accidentally” outed as being gay in high school after getting drunk one night and telling people he didn’t know very well; small country towns can be cruel to people that are different than the status quo. “I never got beat up,” he smiles. “I was friends with all the girls.” But certainly he faced stress and conflict—externally and internally—which contributed to his admittances into the state mental hospital (which his first full length book, Mental Hospital: a Memoir, is based on). “I’d be dead if it wasn’t for that place”—a contrary idea that all institutions are degrading and abusive.

23 | ELEVEN PORTLAND | www.elevenpdx.com

“[Mental Hospital] is about 98% done,” he says, adding that it is being published by YES YES Books, comes out next year, and will come with a full book tour. “It is the best thing I have ever made. It is really good.” He stops nervously fidgeting for a second, sits straight up, and smiles. It is one of those smiles that automatically energizes the joyous spirits of the things around him. When Ross talks about his work, it makes one think he’s never been sad in his life. Perhaps it’s the caffeine, but also it seems he has conquered some of the dark themes in his books and, in doing so, his capacity for brightness has been elevated. “I am proud of it. It might sound cheesy, but after going through everything of being institutionalized, and trying to kill myself multiple times, and experiencing depression that I didn’t think I could come back from, and turn that into something beautiful is a huge triumph. It’s a huge deal for me.” At 27, Ross moved to Portland. Then, upon turning 30, he published a chapbook called I Want to Say How I Feel and Be Done with It Forever, which spent several months in the featured local writer section of Powell’s Books. Later, Andrew Barton of Two Plum Books approached him about publishing his eighty-page book All In Black Blood My Love Went Riding that’s binding is a piece of art in and of itself—a product of what is unique about the Portland small press scene. Ross describes it himself as funny and strange, but fears the book is too snarky or facetious when he reads it. As a reader, the poems are a steady balance of dark cynicism and playfulness that provide a well-versed narrative consistent with our modern age. While some writers subscribe to the notion that one should write as if their life depends on it, for Ross it hasn’t been so mortally expensive. “It hasn’t come with a cost. It has come with a lot of benefits. Absolutely. I have more friends because of it. I know people that I admire. I have people who I am happy to have in my life—who I may not have met otherwise. It gives me a sense of purpose, a sense of self.” Triumphing indeed. » - Billy Dye


community literary arts

LOCAL LITERARY EVENTS written by Scott McHale

CALLING DR. LAURA & PREGNANT BUTCH READING 1 AUGUST 8 | INDEPENDENT PUBLISHING RESOURCE CENTER The comic zine is often overlooked, but often offers poignant insights on modern life. A.K. Summers will be reading from her new release Pregnant Butch, which recounts the challenges of the increasingly common experience in a comical and open way. Portland artist Nicole J. Georges will read from her criticallyacclaimed graphic memoir Calling Dr. Laura.

BACK FENCE PDX: BLINDSIDED STORIES 2 AUGUST 15 | HOLLYWOOD THEATER If you’re sick of hearing the same old recycled stories from the neighborhood barfly, check out this show. John Roderick, out of Seattle, is returning for this event with his hilariously dark and sometimes shocking brand of storytelling. Cole Kazdin from LA, as well as locals Claire Willet and Val Mallison will also be sharing their true stories based on the theme “blindsided.”

À READING #9 3 AUGUST 31 | VALENTINES Hosted by the charming and prolific Brit poet Robert Duncan Gray, this has become a can’t-miss event in the local lit scene. This month’s spoken word offerings include Michael Harper, Ryan Mills, Rachael Jensen, Carl Adamshick and Meg Waldron. Grab a well crafted cocktail and enjoy. »

www.elevenpdx.com | ELEVEN PORTLAND | 24


community neighborhood of the month

SE 11TH AVENUE / LADDS NEIGHBORHOOD OF THE MONTH 10

6

8

9 E

N

S W

11

3. MICROPUB

1. BAND HANGOUT

Baerlic Brewing Company - 2235 SE 11th Ave

Firkin Tavern - 1937 SE 11th Ave

2. RAD RIBS

Tennessee Red's - 2133 SE 11th Ave

photo by Mercy McNab

photo by Mercy McNab

BEST OF SE 11TH AVENUE

photo by Todd Walberg

25 | ELEVEN PORTLAND | www.elevenpdx.com

SE DIVISION ST

3

7 SE CARUTHERS ST

2

SE SHERMAN ST

5

SE GRANT ST

4

SE LINCOLN ST

SE HARRISON ST

1

SE 11TH AVE

4. CAFFEINE CAFE

Cellar Door - 2001 SE 11th Ave

5. TRADITIONAL FAMILY BAKERY Alessio Bakery - 2025 SE 11th Ave

6. ALL OF THE SPORTS

Blitz Ladd - 2239 SE 11th Ave

7. DESIGN & PRINT SERVICES

Phoenix Media - 2420 Se 11th Ave

8. CLOWNING AROUND

Funhouse Lounge - 2432 SE 11th Ave

9. MAGICAL BRUNCH

Genies - 1101 SE Division St

10. SCREENPRINTIN'

Modified - 1117 SE Division St

11. ECLECTIC CREATIVE HUB Ford Building - 2505 SE 11th Ave


community local hero

Nik Sin (floating) + ELEVEN's own assistant graphic designer Alex Combs (drinking) Photo by Mercy McNab

LOCAL HERO Nik Sin of Lonesome's Pizza

“A hero,”

“I have always had that spotlight,” he says, “even before I knew there was a spotlight.” As an entertainer and entrepreneur (Nik co-owns Lonesome’s Pizza), the spotlight is certainly a plus. But sometimes he just wants to go to the grocery store without someone trying to help him get the caesar dressing off the middle shelf. “It can be beneficial, like in the entertainment world where it is a gimmick, but there is

Nik Sin says, “is anybody that

also everyday life. There is driving, grocery shopping, and signing your

anybody can look up to and has trekked new ground people have not

name at the DMV counter that’s three inches above your head; it is also

crossed.” He sits casually in the patio chair outside his kitchen’s sliding

living in a world that is not made for me.” That said, he wouldn’t give

glass door. There is a small in-ground pool in the background where

the spotlight up because it has made him who he is today. The spotlight

his small Chihuahua patters around sticking its nose in the afternoon’s

of being a person with a disability is the catalyst—the courage—that

debris. It is probably an easy eighty-five degrees. Nik clads himself in

motivates him to be the person he wants to be, and so people can know

heavy black leather boots, thick black denim jeans with black tee to

that they can have a disability and be themselves. That they don’t have

match, and aviators paired with a dress cap that was probably swiped

to be the cookie-cutter other people want them to be.

off a USSR military officer. He looks at the full sleeve of tattoos on his

“When I was growing up I didn’t have anyone to look up to,” he says,

arms and acknowledges words like “hero” have been tossed around

and we reminisce about the days prior to the internet. “I didn’t know any

near his name, but expresses reservations about it. Still, he manages

other little people. I didn’t interact with people like me until I was 16 or

to cite things like how in high school he played football, was on the

17.” The internet has changed things and shaped his endgame; he wants

wrestling team, and did theater—despite the notions of many doubters

to have some six year old kid who has a similar story as him to be able

of the three foot adolescent’s ability. He smiles and laughs, admitting

to see him online and see that, “Holy shit, there is a midget with tattoos

that he does think it’s pretty cool.

and eyeliner and a bunch of beer and a huge social media following,”

Some heroes are made, forged by monumental experiences. For Nik, he was born. Never setting out to be “more iconic than yesterday,” or out to “prove people wrong.” He was born a little person whose

instead of the oompa loompa and leprechaun bullshit he grew up with. The next step is empowerment. The key to empowerment is controlling it. “It is, you know, people

everyday life wove him together into the water-tight character he

use the words midget and dwarf in a negative light. But you know when

is today. He says, “You can’t not be who you are born as,” a secret to

you embrace those words, you take someone’s weapons away from

success foreshadowed: “I meet a lot of people with disabilities, and you

them—which are the only weapons they have are to call you a midget

have to overcome them either way.”

or dwarf or whatever they might call you. You should be like ‘oh yeah, I

Being three feet tall is a double-edged sword of advantage and

will out-drink you anyways.’ That is the key to empowerment. It is not

disadvantage. He chuckles at memories of hanging out with his

letting a person’s words hurt you. A lot of the times it is that someone

friends in the mall as a kid, kicking a garbage can over and having mall

doesn’t know another little person or midget or dwarf. Not that there is

cops confront other passer-byers, perhaps motivated by their social

a difference.” He pauses the interview to make sure the next thing is on

cowardice of approaching someone different than them. But being

the record. “There is no difference. There is no difference, there is only

different also means having eyes on you all the time.

how you take it.” That is your empowerment. » - Billy Dye

www.elevenpdx.com | ELEVEN PORTLAND | 26


community visual arts

Photo by Mercy McNab

I'm also working on a mural right now for a bike shop in the Hollywood district called Velo Cult. It's a really cool bike shop because it's a bar and a venue also. The mural is almost finished. It's not exactly my kind of style, but I met these guys through Reddit. They saw my work and liked it and asked me to make them a mural! I use a projector to create the larger image from what I already made and have siting around in my house. I like painting walls. I really like the outdoor space. I thought I was going down to shoot up a stencil in a few hours, and then when they walked me out back and showed me the wall and told me about the cityscape they wanted. I thought, "Hey, I'll do that for you. I do that." I really wanted to test myself and say, "Hey I just painted a giant wall!" 11: How is the process different from the smaller paintings when you do a mural? AP: Well the smaller stuff—I use X-Acto knives and everything is controlled and careful. And with the mural I'm rolling and brushing on a ladder. I mean, I think the mural is like 60' by 24', so I'm up on a huge ladder and it's a lot of freehand. 11: You have a really defined style with stencils. How did you come up with that?

VISUAL ARTS Portland artist Andy Phillips

ELEVEN: What's your medium? Andy Phillips: I'm a painter, I guess. My process is a little bit like falling in love. I will see some image and I'll know I have to make this image. . . just see the face and know. That's why commissions are so hard for me. I can see an image and visualize the end result ahead of time. Each piece takes about a month or so. I'm a cheap ass—I like to use found objects and think it's interesting to put beautiful images on cheap canvas or garbage. The neatness isn't what makes it good to me. It's the interest of the artwork that makes it good. 11: What was the last image that you saw that made you feel captivated? AP: Actually an old picture of my ex that I took by a lake in like 2003. Her hair was blowing in this hoodie, and so I'm in the process of scanning the image. 11: What's the process like for your current series of works? AP: I find images in different places, or take my own photos and then create stencils all by hand and use found objects as canvases. This foamboard came from Scrap. I then use spray paint and hope the stencil stays together [laughing].

27 | ELEVEN PORTLAND | www.elevenpdx.com PRINTED ON 100% RECYCLED PAPER

"Hipster Lama" stencil and spray paint on repurposed foam core, 2013


community visual arts I created stencil shapes that worked with a lot of negative space. Instead of putting an image on a background, I got rid of the background and attempted to control the light source—sort of opposite of the traditional way of using stencil to create image. I came up with the shapes in my stencil by trying to mimic crosshatching.

of what you can do with a stencil. He takes the stencils and makes it so interesting by using the stencil to create images that look like photographs. 11: What was your medium before painting and stenciling?

AP: Paper. I was always making art with cut paper. I always thought 11: Have you had any of it like a paint by number with catastrophes during the stencil paper. I guess that's how I think of process? most of the work. It's kind of how my brain works. Reducing images AP: Yeah, I mean the damn to light and value so the brain things are so thin. Totally. The first "Courtney's Elephant" recognizes a face. I did a scene of a stencil and spray paint on repurposed foam core, 2013 one I sprayed—it just got totally stamp and a series of small birds out destroyed and ripped apart. A total of paper not too long ago. I started disaster. Any of the stencils could get ruined on the next spray. really doing stencils in 2010 when my son was about 2. I had It's pretty sketchy. split up with his mother and was in school to be a physicist and mathematician. I had a teeny tiny nervous breakdown of sorts, 11: Who are some of your favorite artists right now? and so art is a positive byproduct from that time in my life. AP: I'm really influenced by this French artist c215. He is like the stencil genius. He does eight-layer stencils that look so complicated. When I saw his work it really changed my idea

11: Do you have a current obsession? AP: Steinbeck! Audio books. I really like John Steinbeck.

www.elevenpdx.com | ELEVEN PORTLAND | 28


community visual arts

In process mural for Velo Cult Bicycles. Photo by Mercy McNab

I just read Cannery Row. It really made me think about how people used to actually hand write letters, mail it, and then wait for the response. No texting—you can't have an immediate response at all. It took like four days for each letter back and forth. Now, if you don't hear back from someone in like an hour it's like, "WTF?" Steinbeck is the shit. Also, I really like small birds, because they are awesome. They are so incredible because the are this little dinosaur-like creature. They are like the Ferrari of dinosaurs. They've lasted forever. My favorite are the juncos—dark eyed juncos. 11: What's it like being an artist in Portland? AP: Well, hmmm. I guess it's pretty cool. There's a lot of places to show your work for free, and you can always hang your art in coffee shops or do the Last Thursday thing. But it's kind of over-saturated, too. I mean everyone is kind of an artist somehow here, you know. I like it. I've never been an artist anywhere else, so I don't know what to compare it to. I grew up in Parkrose. Although I did live in Seattle for two years, but I wasn't really making art then. I was just writing bad poetry. [interrupted by a motorcycle gang revving engines and driving over medians, Andy and I pondered continuing the interview on the back of a motorcycle, cruising down Williams. Ultimately for the sake of sound control, I decided against it.] 11: Do you have any poetry you want to recite for us?

And when I come to the garden ground, The whir of sober birds Up from the tangle of withered weeds Is sadder than any words A tree beside the wall stands bare, But a leaf that lingered brown, Disturbed, I doubt not, by my thought, Comes softly rattling down. I end not far from my going forth By picking the faded blue Of the last remaining aster flower To carry again to you. —Robert Frost I was on a really big Robert Frost kick recently. His stuff is so old that all of his online audio stuff is public domain. I do another kind of art also that's pretty geeky. I make Nintendo sprites out of Legos and glue them together, and then I'll put a sticker on the back of a QR code that if you scan with your phone it takes you to a Robert Frost poem. I put these little Nintendo guys wherever, you know, like on the street or in a bar so that people will find them. If you scan the QR code, you can have a Robert Frost poem read to you out loud. I'm in the process of Frosting the world. 11: Shout-outs for your homies?

AP: Well, I DO have some Robert Frost I could recite: When I go up through the mowing field, The headless aftermath, Smooth-laid like thatch with the heavy dew, Half closes the garden path.

29 | ELEVEN PORTLAND | www.elevenpdx.com

AP: Rosy England Fisher. She's a great artist and you should check her out. » - Veronica Greene

Please enjoy Andy's piece "Masatsugu" (stencil and spray paint on repurposed foam core, 2014) decorating our inside back cover this month. Find more from Andy at www.etsy.com/shop/AndyPhillipsArt


@ THE CRYSTAL BALLROOM

@ THE CRYSTAL BALLROOM

@ THE ARLENE SCHNITZER CONCERT HALL

@ THE CRYSTAL BALLROOM

Eleven PDX Magazine August 2014  
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