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Saturday, December 14, 2019

Silversun Pickups

7:30 pm doors, 8:30 pm show

$32.50 advance, $37 day of show

All ages welcome

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Silversun Pickups

Consumable, cathartic alt-rock

Silversun Pickups

Brian Aubert (guitar, vocals) * Nikki Monninger (bass)
Joe Lester (keyboards) * Christopher Guanlao (drums)

Silversun Pickups have always considered their sonic density a source of pride: The Los Angeles band’s four studio full-lengths — including their 2006 gold-selling debut, Carnavas, which spawned the hits “Lazy Eye” and “Well Thought Out Twinkles” — reveal additional sonic gifts with each subsequent spin.

Their fifth album, Widow’s Weeds, also caters to an adventurous, patient group of listeners. Strident acoustic strumming tussles with raging electric riffs, as urgent, precise beats and moody electronic pulses percolate underneath. The band members — which, in addition to Aubert, include bassist Nikki Monninger, drummer Christopher Guanlao and keyboardist Joe Lester — were also in agreement with the album’s starting point (the urgent synth-rocker “Neon Wound”) and closer (the aggressive, throttling “We Are Chameleons”). The band admitted that everything in between, including how the rest of Widow’s Weeds was sequenced and how the album unfolded, often surprised the band.

“We didn’t know exactly which emotional level the lyrics were going to start at,” Aubert says. “I was like, ‘Are they going to be angry, with these crazy times?’ Everything seems so polarized and bizarre and scary. All of these things affect you. And then as they were coming out, it was like, ‘No, they sound like they’re kind of mourning.’ I couldn’t quite put them all together.”

To make sense of these ideas, Silversun Pickups enlisted a long-time friend: producer Butch Vig (Nirvana, Smashing Pumpkins, Sonic Youth). Incredibly enough, this was the first time the band had worked with Vig, even though the idea of collaborating had been floated for years. "The timing didn’t feel right until now," Aubert says. “With the ideas that were popping around in my head, it felt like, ‘God, this would be awesome; I think it’s time. If Butch is interested in doing this at all, let’s just call him.'”

Vig and mixer Billy Bush helped Silversun Pickups craft a confident, extroverted album in which every instrument is clearly audible in the mix. Pulsing, Cure-like keyboards hold their own against slashing riffs on “Neon Wound”; antique-sounding violin and cello enhance fragile acoustic strumming on “Straw Man”; and the spring-loaded, glammy “It Doesn’t Matter Why” boasts pogoing beats and needling pizzicato plucks. The album’s more restrained moments also maintain this crispness. “Simpatico” is “the closest we’ll get to a James Bond song,” says Aubert, who immersed himself in movie scores as the album was coalescing. Widow’s Weeds strikes a perfect balance between provocative noise and distortion, and lush, introspective pop tranquility.

The band members also decided not to go overboard layering on instruments and sounds, which contributed to the album’s clearer approach. “We made a conscious effort to rein in the electronic stuff a little bit, and have more pianos and organs,” Lester says. “There’s still synthy stuff on there for sure. But we have strings again, which we hadn’t done for a couple of records. And there’s a lot less sequenced electronics. It was like, ‘Let’s strip the palette a little bit, and see what happens.’ And that goes back to the directness of things.”

Vig’s versatility and songwriting background helped the band shape other songs — including and especially “Don’t Know Yet,” on which glitchy, taut electronic textures segue into explosive choruses driven by brusque drums and noisy guitars. “It has moments of intimacy, but then it really comes alive and big-sounding,” Guanlao says of the song. “That’s all Butch. We would have probably gone a totally different direction if it wasn’t for him hearing that this once-intimate, mellow song can be really boastful and rocking.”

In the end, recording with Vig surpassed the band members’ already-high expectations. “He really listens to each band member, and he puts a great value on each individual, and what they can add to the music,” Monninger says. “It was very collaborative with him. He’s such an easygoing person, and he put everybody at ease.” That camaraderie translated into a studio environment that involved intense and serious hard work unfolding in a jovial, even lighthearted, manner. “We had a really fun time recording this album,” Guanlao says. “He really did get the best out of us. We didn’t want it to end.”

Despite the halcyon studio time, the band members were wrestling with challenges in their personal lives. The album had to be done in two separate blocks of time, since Vig had Garbage tour plans already on the calendar, which left Silversun Pickups with a break between sessions. During that gap in time, Lester’s father passed away. Aubert, meanwhile, found himself in an extremely dark place, for reasons he couldn’t immediately explain.

“We started making this album about mourning, and it’s like, ‘What are you mourning? Are you really mourning politics and stuff like that? Or what is happening?’ I didn’t realize that I was finding myself in this space where I completely tried to take on everything myself. I couldn’t ask for help; I couldn’t let anybody in. That led me to start drinking in a different way, that I never did before.”

As a result, Aubert — who was already feeling “emotionally closed off,” as he puts it — fell into a deep depression. “I didn’t know how to get out of it,” Aubert says. “Finally, I was just like, something big has to happen.” His solution was getting treatment and getting sober during the gap between recording sessions — a decision that immediately improved his mental health and creative outlook.

Unsurprisingly, Aubert also had a much different perspective on his Widow’s Weeds lyrics post-treatment, and understood more what messages he was trying to convey with the album. “The record does have a mourning vibe, but it’s not sad,” he says. “It’s change. It’s growing up, and moving on and letting go of things. And it’s okay to be sad about those things, and mourn them. It’s actually healthy to do so, and take the time to do it. At the end of the day, it’s going to be much better and much more fulfilling when you get through it.”

“When I got sober, and took a little time to myself to move as a human, we came back at the record again,” Aubert says. “Then it was like, now we’re back into the record, and writing again. It was wild. Things are really changing, and I’m starting to emotionally connect to things, and starting to take care of myself. I’m starting to ask for help.”

Aubert’s bandmates also saw an immediate change in him as they reconvened to finish Widow’s Weeds. Guanlao noticed that the vocalist was opening up to him and the rest of the band more, and allowing himself to be more vulnerable, while Monninger observed increased clarity. “I’m really proud of him for coming through all this. He focused so much on the album and put so much of his heart into it — as we all did, but especially coming out of all that, he needed something to really focus on.” Lester also saw big, positive differences in his bandmate. “It was like, ‘okay, this has actually been really good; he’s gotten stuff that has probably been bothering him for a long time sorted out.’”

In a nod to Aubert’s healthier mindset — and in a big change from past working environments — the members of Silversun Pickups welcomed friends and family into the studio as they were recording. “This was the first album where we were open,” Aubert says. “Not just with Butch, but with people around us. We played stuff for people. We never used to before. We’d play a little mixing and things like that. We were too shy.” Creating this kind of social, nurturing atmosphere added levity and accountability, and kept everyone in the band grounded. “Doing this in front of people is so much more enlightening and really helps you focus on things,” Aubert says. “We were exposed. I see how that can be scary to people, but for us we really thrived on that.”

Widow’s Weeds ends up being about rebirth and renewal, facing darker elements of the soul (or society) head-on, and choosing to either engage — or leave them behind. This shift toward blunt candor wasn’t lost on Lester. “I feel Brian’s lyrics have gotten more direct over the last couple of records. He’s much more open and less coy about what he’s singing about. There’s less trying to put Vaseline on the lens.”

Over the years, Silversun Pickups have racked up 210 million worldwide streams and 10 Top 20 hits on Billboard‘s Alternative Songs chart, led by 2009’s ferocious chart-topper “Panic Switch.” Nearly 20 years after the band formed, it’s not lost on Monninger that they’re one of the few groups they’ve grown up with who have sustained a career. “I don’t know many bands that have lasted that long,” she says. “But we started as friends first, and we care about each other — you know, this is our second family. We really believe in what we’re doing. We’re going to take it as far as we can.”

For Aubert, moving forward involves staying connected to his own self (and remembering to prioritize self-care) and being attuned to creative impulses when they arise. If that means going outside of his comfort zone, so be it. “This album feels the most naked out of all of them,” Aubert says. “That’s scary at first. But that goes into my whole headspace. That goes into how things went down. It was like, ‘Hey man, you were so unaware of the things you needed, and so closed off. Just do it. Stop hiding. It was crushing you. Don’t be afraid.’"

website:
http://www.silversunpickups.com/

Spotify:
http://play.spotify.com/artist/6qyi8X6MdP1lu6B1K6yh3h

Facebook:
http://www.facebook.com/silversunpickups

Twitter:
http://twitter.com/sspu

YouTube:
http://www.youtube.com/silversunpickups

Instagram:
http://instagram.com/sspu/

Events

The Crystal Ballroom

1332 W. Burnside
Portland OR 97209

(503) 225-0047
Contact us

Where On Any Night, Anything Can Happen!!

In these walls...

The historic Crystal Ballroom -- now over a century old -- is one of those rare concert halls that can point to a proud, diverse history while also laying claim to an ongoing musical legacy. Every time you enter this majestic ballroom, let your imagination sense the tremors resonating from a century's worth of gatherings, and realize that you are joining a thriving, generations-long procession of show-goers. Welcome!

Looking for your Crystal Ballroom Passport Stamps?

Crystal Ballroom, Lola’s Room & Crystal Brewery Tour occurs daily at 2 p.m. - meet at Ringlers Pub (street level below the Crystal Ballroom.) The tour takes about half an hour to complete. Any questions may be directed to the Crystal box office, 503-225-0047.

Stamps for the Crystal Ballroom and Lola’s Room are also available when you see a show – ticketed or free – in either venue.

Please note: Due to private events, concert setup needs and brewers’ schedules, not all spaces are guaranteed to be available to tour daily, but our staff will give it our best shot and show you the spaces that we can.

Tech Specs

Floor and stage plan
PDF download

Lighting diagram 
PDF download

Sound manifest
Crystal:
PDF download
Lola's Room: 
PDF download

Technical and logistical packet
For Crystal Ballroom & Lola's Room
PDF download

Ballroom height and beam-to-beam dimensions
16' 11" from beam to floor
19' 11" from floor to ceiling
14' 6" in between beams

Promoter Info

Rental Expenses To Outside Promoters

RENT VARIES, PLEASE CONTACT A BOOKING COORDINATOR
$900  SOUND & LIGHTS
$365  PRODUCTION MANAGER ($54.75/hr OT)
$255  STAGE MANAGER ($38.32/hr OT)
$255  FOH TECHNICIAN ($38.32/hr OT)
$255  MONITOR ENGINEER ($38.32/hr OT)
$255  LIGHTING DIRECTOR ($38.32/hr OT)
$150  HOSPITALITY ($20/hr OT) [mileage is 33 cents per mile]
$1,000*  SECURITY ($100/hr OT)
$100  BOX OFFICE STAFF ($20/hr OT)
$200  ADMINISTRATION FEE
$ ----  PARKING HOODS
$ ----  CHAIR RENTAL ($2 per chair)
$ ----  ADVERTISING
$500  PIPE AND DRAPE/BARRICADE
$175  STAGEHANDS
$ ----  BOX OFFICE CREDIT CARD FEE (3% of Box Credit Card Sales)

* Security cost is an estimate. Additional security may be required depending on the nature of the event. 

Overtime: All expenses incurred by the Crystal Ballroom for Catering, Advertising, requested stagehands, overtime (anything over 10 hours), backline, barricade, risers, etc. will be added to total rental rate.

Deposits: A non-refundable 50% room deposit and a $2,500 'untenured promoter fee' (UPF) is due immediately in order to secure the room. If ticket sales exceed 500 the 'UPF' will be refunded; if ticket sales are below 500 the room keeps the entire $2,500 to make up for less than 1/3 capacity and corresponding lack of sales. The 'UPF' will not be refunded if the event cancels within 60 days of the event.

Settlement: Venue will pay renter with a company check at the immediate conclusion of door sales. Venue will not provide any cash at settlement.

Late Night Fee: There is a $1,000/hour additional fee for any events after 3 a.m. We may also require additional security for events of that nature.

Merchandise: Merch rate is 20% they sell. We can provide a seller with advance notice and will keep 30% of sales. The outside promoter will receive no revenue from the merchandise as that is the prerogative of the house. House keeps a percentage of all transactions.

Tickets: All tickets must be placed through the venue onto the Cascade Tickets system. All comps, label buys, and holds must be approved by the venue. There is a $2/ticket venue fee at the Box Office.

Refunds: All refunds will be directed to the outside promoter. In the absence of an outside promoter representative, the venue shall use its own discretion regarding refunds and all refunds shall be deducted from settlement.

Insurance and Licenses: Renter must provide liability insurance not less than $1,000,000 for any single occurrence naming McMenamins Inc. d.b.a. Crystal Ballroom as additionally insured. Tickets will not be placed on sale until binder is received. Promoter is responsible for all ASCAP, BMI, and SESAC fees.

Production Advance: Performers or their representative must contact venue's production manager 5 days prior to the event in order to advance production needs, otherwise runner will arrive at 6 p.m. and all rider items/requests will be greatly limited if provided at all.

Layout: The Crystal Ballroom is located on the 3rd floor. The first floor is Ringlers Restaurant and the 2nd floor is Lola's Room, both of which may have a public or private event simultaneously with the Crystal.

Cancellation/Postponement: The contract covers the specified event for the specified date. No substitution will be accepted for a cancellation. If the event is postponed the room deposit will be transferred to the date of the new event but the $2,500 'UPF' will be applied toward the date of the originally scheduled show and an additional $2,500 will be required in order to reschedule.

Capacity: The venue's capacity is 1500*. All artist and promoter guests and comps will be deducted from sellable. Comp and guest space must be reserved in advance. House is entitled to 20 guests. House guests will not effect sellable. Promoter must have guest list to house no later than 2 hours prior to doors. VIP cap is 25.

* Seated capacity is 850. Seated shows must be 21 and over. There is a $2/chair rental fee.

Venue and corporate sponsor banners may be present during event.

Marketing your event at the Crystal Ballroom

Please contact Mike Walker for information about marketing your event through McMenamins resources.

Box Office

Please note! Both the Crystal Ballroom and Lola's Room specialize in open-floor shows with a very limited amount of seats. The rare seated events will be clearly denoted as such, within the event description on our schedule page.

Box Office Information

Tickets for all McMenamins shows are ticketed by Cascade Tickets, and may be purchased at the Crystal box office (located under the Crystal's awning) and McMenamins Edgefield, by phone at 1-855-CAS-TIXX, or by clicking the "Buy Tickets" link located at the event listing on our schedules.

Tickets bought directly at the Crystal box office or any of our four ticket outlets will only incur a $1 facility charge. (Please note! Tickets to Edgefield Concerts on the Lawn will incur additional service fees.)

Crystal Ballroom Box Office Hours 
Daily, 11:30 a.m. to 6 p.m.
The box office is open later on nights when there is a performance.

The box office accepts cash, VISA, MasterCard, American Express and DiscoverCard.

Will Call

Will call is located at the box office.

Refunds

All ticket purchases are non-refundable.

Parking

There are three pay lots nearby, and street parking is available.

Accessibility

Those with disabilities may call (503 225 0047) or email in advance to arrange early admittance.

There is an elevator located in the lobby.

Hold your Private Event at Crystal Ballroom

Weddings  Meetings  Social Events

The Crystal Ballroom is a truly awe-inspiring venue with its vaulted ceilings, grand chandeliers, giant wallscapes and famous "floating" dance floor. Accommodating groups from 100 to 1000 people, this 7,500-square-foot space includes access to the Ballroom's classic corner stage, floor-to-ceiling windows, swooping balcony, and full bar service.

Tucked in the Crystal’s second story is Lola’s Room accommodating events of up to 200 guests.  Lola’s comes with a handsome fully stocked bar, original artwork, and a floating dance floor all it’s own.

For overnight accommodations, our Crystal Hotel is just a block away!

Contact our sales team to inquire or book your event.
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Art

Artwork plays an important role in the character of McMenamins locations throughout Oregon and Washington. We believe art makes life richer and more enjoyable. So, you'll often find paintings covering our walls, ceilings doors, overhead pipes, and equipment -- works as diverse and entertaining as our places for family and friends. Many artists have contributed to this vast variety of delightful eye candy. Jump in and enjoy some now!

History

 

 

Explore the Crystal Blocks

Our Crystal Hotel and legendary Crystal Ballroom are just across the street from each other, each offering their own unique spaces for live music, Northwest style fare and McMenamins hand crafted beverages.  Explore these properties and all they have to offer. 

Crystal Ballroom Property

Crystal Ballroom  Lola's Room  Ringlers Pub  Crystal Brewery

Crystal Hotel Property

Crystal Hotel  Al's Den  Ringlers Annex  Zeus Cafe

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