>> Of all the summer festivals we get stoked about, Denmark’s Dam Jam is always near the top of the heap. They’ve lined up another zesty and adventurous palette of musical acts this year, playing all day and eve hours in picturesque Bicentennial Park, which includes Portland staples Butcher Boy and Sunset Hearts (who have a new album due in September), the fringe country-folk act Oble Varnum, the West African drumming group Akwaaba Ensemble, Bangor’s Chamberlain, and Montreal’s mighty post-rock institution Thee Silver Mt. Zion Memorial Orchestra. The makings of an otherwordly day. Tickets to the August 2 show cost a mere $12-14 — plus the festival organizers, the fine folks at the Denmark Arts Center, have been known to put together shuttles from Portland for interested parties. Visit thedamjam.com for more details.
>> With our feature story covering Grime Studios’ overlord Justin Curtsinger’s tireless search for a new and improved space, it seems fitting to note that Zud, his black metal/rock ‘n’ roll band of the last couple years, is on indefinite hiatus. Those with a taste for raw, abrasive primitivism might gnaw at their release from last winter — the satanically obsessed five-song scorcher The Good, the Bad, and the Damned — limited to 333 copies and available via zud666.blogspot.com.
>> The heavy rock band Pigboat have been longstanding tenants at Prime Artist Rehearsal Studios (and for what it’s worth, were singled out as one of the few bands to always pay their rent on time). They’re putting the final varnish on their first full-length in six years, the amusingly titled Distracted By Adventures in Healthcare (after singer Mark Belanger’s successful battle with cancer last year). Recorded by Wally Wenzel at Wallyworld and mastered by Jonathan Wyman at the Halo, look for it in July via Deporter Records.
>> And then there’s Famine First, a new 3-song EP by Vinyl Cape, an original “gothic outlaw doom rap” group from Portland that fuses the diverse, outer-spectrum tastes of Brzowski, C Money Burns, and Connecticut producer Mo Niklz. Super dark, apocalyptic, and raw while keeping a sense of humor (dig that swaggering Samhain cover, dudes), the group launch a mini-tour this week with an appearance at Asylum’s “Rap Night” on June 18. Hear more at vinylcape.bandcamp.com.