Every night of the week, year-round, Seattle provides me with a dilemma: there are too many great entertainment options available to me, and I am just one (semi-) humble person located on the far side of Lake Washington. This embarrassment of cultural riches is nonetheless most welcomed by me, having spent my youth entertained mostly by giant snow drifts and clouds of mosquitos. Last Wednesday, my evening overfloweth, not only with buckets of damned rain but the opportunity to once again enjoy the performance skills and pithy prose of perfectly-peculiar power-pop princes, King Tuff. Say the last half of that last sentence five times fast, then look at this, and I feel your day will be made.

Neumos was the first stop for King Tuff on a West Coast run prior to a European tour in support of their new album on Sub Pop, the excellent "Black Moon Spell," which I already know will land on my list of favorites for 2014. Every song shines, with stellar production and wonderfully clever song construction creating a confident and fun record. King Tuff's interpretation of "power pop," THANK JEEBUS, has nothing to do with the anemic alt or pinheaded twerk-pop that dominates 2014 Top 40. Take a time-trip back to the '70s, baby, where power pop was raised up as the apple-cheeked devil child of bubblegum AM radio hits and filthy, shiny glam rock: think The Raspberries, Sweet, Slade, Starz, and Cheap Trick. You can smilingly sing along to every song, yes, but there's also this undercurrent of something a little dark, a little off, tempering the sweetness in a most-satisfying way. I was stoked, brahs and brahlettes, to hear "Black Moon Spell"'s songs live in concert.

I was sad to miss the lovely and talented Katy Goodman opening for King Tuff in La Sera, as I had previously promised to attend neighboring club Chop Suey's Bring Your Own Vinyl Night, which was concurrent with her set. I arrived at Neumos with only 10 minutes to spare before King Tuff was to appear, and the floor was packed with enthusiastic fans, many youthful and attractive and wielding pre-purchased King Tuff merch. I was luckily able to get the last view/photo spot at side stage and settled in. I knew that the assembled youth would be dancing with great fervor up front, and that was indeed the case, with fans flinging their hair and pumping their fists and just having the time of their lives. There was King Tuff himself (known as Kyle Thomas to the folks who used to change his diapers) on guitar, the sunshine beacon that is Magic Jake on bass, and "Human Jukebox" Garett "Old Gary" Goddard on bare-footin', stick-twirlin' drums, and the one-hour (or so) set didn't have a a single lull. Super-tight, super-rad, and super-fun for all, including yours truly. It was the best place to be.

A final note: after the show had ended and the floor had cleared out a bit, I was most heartened to see the band come out to interact with the fans that had hung around in hopes to meet them. Each one of them kindly posed for pictures, signed merch, and were patient and friendly to all. This is not something I see too often, so it just makes me love and respect King Tuff even more. You're knocking it out of the ballpark, guys, in every way. Shine on.

(As always, click on the photos to enlarge or click on the Flickr set link for more!)

Thank you Neumos, Kitty Page, Sub Pop, and of course King Tuff for a great night!