(Neumos) How much goodwill do you have toward hiphop acts whose careers arguably peaked two decades ago? Because 2014 especially has seen a wave of think pieces and critical evaluations of such silver age acts as Nas, Digable Planets, Wu-Tang Clan and now Freestyle Fellowship, whose Innercity Griots album was released to much (underground) fanfare in 1993. The Fellowship shared a loose, funky sound with fellow Los Angelenos the Pharcyde, with rappers Aceyalone, Myka 9, Self Jupiter, and P.E.A.C.E. trading juvenile put-downs over classic breakbeats and playfully warped jazz samples. There's no question that Griots remains a towering document of a very particular time in rap culture, showcasing a crew at the height of their powers reveling in endless youthful swagger. Subsequent records, however, have been few and far between, none coming close to matching Griots' effortless charm, so the choice to see them tonight comes down to how nostalgic you remain for that particular window of hiphop history. KYLE FLECK
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(2 Bit Saloon) One: HOLY SHIT! Pizza Fest is back! When the Funhouse closed, it seemed like Pizza Fest’s fate had been sealed. I mean, what other punk-friendly bar in Seattle would host such a messy-awesome mini-music fest that includes a disgustingly terrific pizza-eating contest as its main event? Two: Don’t miss this opening night at the 2 Bit—not only because this lineup is excellent, with wisecracking shredders Ubu Roi opening and post-garage-rock masters Dreamsalon headlining, but also because, like the Funhouse, 2 Bit Saloon is going the way of the dodo bird. If Seattle’s insatiable gentrification machine doesn’t slow down, all dive bars will be extinct by 2015 (and a slice of pizza will soon cost $18). KELLY O
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The Studio 4/4 weekly gets very international tonight with the Netherlands' Detroit Swindle and Australia's Motez. Detroit Swindle's Lars Dales and Maarten Smeets are in the business of making house music sound like a thousand-watt smile. They've collaborated with Motown-esque soul dude Mayer Hawthorne on the swanky club hit "64 Ways" and remixed his song "The Stars Are Ours" into a radiant, rolling slice of organically funky house. There's nothing complicated or innovative about Detroit Swindle; they just bring the instant-party vibes and springy funk with efficiency. Baghdad-born Motez Obaidi pumps out house jams in the same vein as Detroit Swindle, but with a bit more girth in his bass and beats. Motez also has racked up an impressive discography of remixes and re-edits, if mainstream R&B and hiphop's your thing (Frank Ocean, Justin Timberlake, Iggy Azalea). With Vagabond Superstar. Q Nightclub, 10 pm, $12 adv, 21+.
Zoolab (Seattle producer Terence Ankeny) is part of Seattle's recent wave of young producers working in the hazy realm where hiphop entwines with nightbus, that vaporous, downcast strain of bass music birthed from Burial's fertile imagination. Zoolab's music makes you nod your head while befogging it with gray clouds of synth, although ebullient rays sometimes shoot through the mist. This show is the release party for his Trestles EP, which Jimi Jaxon's Seattle label 7 Deadly is releasing. IG88 (Branden Clarke, frequent collaborator with rising R&B diva Shaprece and beatmaker Chance Random) creates icy, dream-dazed cuts that can pass as hiphop productions in this post–Lil B world. His melodies are to cry for. With Pillar Point. Barboza, 8 pm, $5 adv, 21+.
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(Lo-Fi) Nothing is lamer than a band onstage bullying the audience into dancing. Like, maybe I don't feel like it tonight? Maybe this music isn't really inspiring me to dive in a pit with a bunch of sweaty strangers? Stop telling me what to do! Mosh pits happen organically! I can't imagine that any of the bands on this bill ever have to make such a desperate request. Raucous Memphis group Ex-Cult crafts post-punk ragers with manic bass lines, menacing lyrics, and elements of psychedelia that feel like getting cracked out on some about-to-be-banned chemical energy drink. And once they sufficiently juice up the crowd, LA-based Zig Zags (whose claim to fame is collaborating on a Betty Davis cover with Iggy Pop) will continue with equally threatening, scummy punk-metal that Lemmy would probably dig. Completing the killer bill are Seattle punk hitmakers Unnatural Helpers, BrainDrain, and DJ Burnt Zza who will most likely create the kind of crowd that rocks out with out any unnecessary prodding. ROBIN EDWARDS
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And here's all our recommended music events—tonight, tomorrow, this weekend, and beyond!