24 The Arcade Fire Forget wind turbines on the Palouse—someone should outfit these Canadians with some kind of energy-harnessing contraption. One live, helmet-pounding, sweat-soaked show alone could garner enough to stave off a rolling blackout. With LCD Soundsystem. Hec Ed Pavilion.
28 Bryan Adams & George Thorogood One listen to Thorogood Live from 1986, and you'll take back everything you said about him. "Bottom of the Sea" and "I Drink Alone" are beer-can-in-hand, trailer-park anthems. As for the other guy on this bill...well...we're not sure how he fits into this equation. Wamu Theatre.
30 Midlake My Name Is Earl's Jason Lee counts himself among Midlake's top-tier of hard-core fans. He's likely not alone: Their cracklike track "Young Bride" is gateway enough to keep anyone jonesing for more. Crocodile Cafe.
3–5 Built to Spill Just like PUSA, these unassuming guys never have a problem selling out a three-night stand at the Showbox. The difference? The list is long, but above all else, Built to Spill make it worth going to all three shows with their quality-packed back catalog, extensive enough to turn out a different, equally compelling set each night. Showbox at the Market.
5 The Blakes If there is a band that girls find cute, detractors will leap to attack. "Fuck these guys; they sound like the Strokes" is one of the most common put-downs. Well, they only kinda sound like the Strokes, folks, and don't hate them just cuz they're beautiful. Plus, they're signed to local powerhouse label Light in the Attic, so immediately, their cred is boosted. Crocodile Cafe.
6 SW's Reverbfest Bumbershoot? Too big! Sasquatch? Too far! REVERBfest? Just riiiiight. Where else can you see more than 50 of the best bands and artists Seattle has to offer, all helping to turn beautiful Ballard Ave. into one filthy strip of rocking debauchery? Ballard Avenue Northwest, various venues, seattleweekly.com/promos/reverb.
8 Square Dance with the Tallboys What better way to celebrate the harvest? Get to jigging with an authentic "caller" set to the twang of Seattle's own Tallboys. Tractor Tavern.
16 Fiery Furnaces Siblings Eleanor and Matthew Friedberger certainly put out a weird, incestuous vibe onstage, and enlisting their creepy-sounding grandmother for sound bites on 2006's Bitter Tea may have been off-putting to many. Let them stray, we say. More freak show for us! Crocodile Cafe.
17–18 The Pogues Not since Brendan Behan has Ireland produced such lovable hell-raisers. Fronted by dental-and-gastronomic boy wonder Shane MacGowan, the Pogues took all the anger, frustration, and exuberance of their native land, infused it with punk rock, and spit it in the face of crowds everywhere. Nowadays, MacGowan drools more than spits, but still...totally worth it. Showbox SoDo.
19–Nov. 4 Earshot Jazz Festival Start with Ahmad Jamal, finish up with John Zorn, and travel an alphabetical universe in between—that's the beauty of Seattle's most essential non-rock fest. Clear your schedule. Various venues, www. earshot.org.
27 Black Mountain The amps will ooze with stoney drone when Steven McBean and his team of Vancouver-based free-love-looking rockers finally come back together from their various side projects for this long-awaited tour. Crocodile Cafe.
29 Joanna Newsom Her mystical, musical folktales filled with bears and rabbits, her majestic golden harp, and her long, flowing mane all seem as though they came directly from the quills of the Brothers Grimm. With an orchestra backing her this time around, the experience should be all the more surreal. Benaroya Hall.
30 Man Man With a sound that's a bit like Tom Waits on mushrooms riding a Ferris wheel at top speed, this Brooklyn-based spectacle has a hard time putting on anything less than one hell of a live show. Neumo's.
3 Battles These Warp Records math rockers have moved up a venue since they came through the Croc this spring. With the viral spread of their "Atlas" video on YouTube, a solid "former members of" lineup (Helmet and Don Caballero), and their robotic, driven, distortion-and-synth-infused style, it shouldn't be long before their room size rises again. Neumo's.
4 The Hold Steady Apparently conceived after a viewing of The Last Waltz, this Minneapolis-born, now Brooklyn-based (yes, another one!) foursome set out to carry on the rock and roll time capsule the film captured. They've still got nothing on Mr. Young, Dylan or the Band, but really, who does? HUB Ballroom, UW campus.
15 David Allan Coe His old man was covered in tattoos and scars, some from prison and others from bars. His mama sold eggs at a grocery store, and his oldest sister is a first-rate whore. Growin' up, his neighbors said he lived like a hick. But dammit, who ended up seeing the Grand Ole Opry and meeting Johnny Cash, huh? That's right, David Allan Coe. El Corazon.
21 Joe Lally of Fugazi Hard drugs in the basement (at least in the past) and heavy boozin' up top sets the Sunset apart from a church basement (or does it?), but this red-hued house is good enough to host the solo work of this most seminal band's bass player. Sunset Tavern.
14, 15 The Cops It could be argued that no local band has more fun onstage than the Cops. Our politically charged quartet echoes the Clash, with traces of dub and reggae thrown in for good measure. And though they obviously love railing against Bush and Co., they leave the preaching in the lyrics. They're more concerned with rockin' hard. Sunset Tavern.