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Rock Picks: Weakerthans, Low, Richard Thompson 

For the week of Sept. 27 – Oct. 4

Wednesday, Sep 26 2007
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THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 27

Th’ Legendary Shack Shakers at the Blue Cafe

Those Southern Bible-thrashing psychobillies known as Th’ Legendary Shack Shakers return for more salvation soaked in sweat and delivered at a bazillion beats per minute. The leader of this traveling American Gothic monster of a show is singer J.D. Wilkes, whose lanky frame recalls Iggy Pop via an upbringing among Pentecostal, speaking-in-tongues disciples. Wilkes can write lyrics like “Careful of the Devil and be prayerful/The phalanges of St. Vitus/Were stricken with arthritis/So he lobbed them off and left them on the table.” With a toned and underfed physique not unlike that stud on the cross, Wilkes is the wiliest singer since Lux Interior and was even dubbed “the last great rock & roll front man” by the Dead Kennedys’ Jello Biafra. And when he shuts up and wails on his blues harp, the roof will indeed be raised. (Libby Molyneaux)

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Also playing Thursday:

BLAQK AUDIO at the Mayan; MUTE MATH, EISLEY at Avalon; SLEEPING IN THE AVIARY at Knitting Factory; THE HEAD CAT at Safari Sam’s; SWEET EVIL, ALARMA, THEE L.A. GENTLEMEN CALLERS at Silverlake Lounge.  

THURSDAY, OCTOBER 4Charlie Louvin at the Mint

The Country Music Hall of Fame is increasingly littered with the detritus of modern Nashville’s horrorshow (Vince Gill? Alabama?), but there’s a small clutch of legitimate inductees still working, and Mr. Charlie Louvin ranks at their forefront. He’s prized for decades of recordings with his drastically volatile brother Ira, and the Alabama-born Louvins elevated the close-harmony sibling school of hillbilly to Olympian heights, cooking up instant standards (“Cash on the Barrelhead”) and propelling hardcore traditional Southern gothic ballads (the blood-spattered dirge “Knoxville Girl”) straight up the charts. Charlie, of course, ain’t no spring chicken, but 2006’s self-titled album proved that he’s still more than able, and his jam-packed Amoeba in-store earlier this year demonstrated that the resilient codger can still mesmerize a crowd. Get it while you can, hoss. (Jonny Whiteside)

Also playing Thursday:

GEORGE THOROGOOD & THE DESTROYERS at Gibson Amphitheatre; MORRISSEY at Hollywood Palladium; ROLLING BLACKOUTS at Alex’s Bar; JAZZABILLY BLUES at Taix; HELMET, DUB TRIO at Vault 350.

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