THURSDAY, APRIL 24
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Choking Susans Colleen Caffeine hangs from an imaginary trapeze.
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Sly Stone channels the Plasmatics Jean Beauvoir.
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From on high: Kate Maki
The Black Heart Procession at the Troubadour
“I have waited all these years beneath the snow,” Pall Jenkins croons somberly on “The Waiter #5,” from the Black Heart Procession’s most recent full-length CD, 2006’s The Spell (Touch & Go), and Tobias Nathaniel’s icy piano tinkling perfectly matches the song’s windswept chilliness. “Hiding in the smoke and trees we live,” Jenkins sings enigmatically on “Tangled,” as neat a summary as any for the San Diego band’s sense of foreboding elegance and shrouded mysteriousness. Matt Resovich’s violin quivers on “The Letter” and the title track, adding a layer of exotic restlessness to the aptly named Pall’s wintry obsessions. “Return to Burn” simmers in its own juices as Jenkins’ baleful lap-steel guitar hovers over a placid, funereal backing that’s positively mesmerizing. The BHP are working on an album that’s scheduled to be released by the end of this year, and it’s rumored that they’ll unveil some of their new songs tonight. (Falling James)
Fuck Buttons at El Rey Theatre
England’s Fuck Buttons — the name conjures both a fetishistic device and an anti-digital rebel yell — constantly summon forces seemingly in conflict. Their music is innocent and violent, bursting with horror and wonder, mechanical but organic. The duo of Andrew Hung and Benjamin John Power craft something like post-noise, if we must hang a genre signpost on the distortion-caked slush they shoot from amplifiers like sewage pumping out of a docked ocean liner. The acidic simmer, a toxic shimmer of overtones and percolating hiss, is underscored by single-note drones and music-box twinkles providing a melodic salve from the chaos. A voice chatters and screams, bursting with bleached harmonics in exorcised hysteria. But what nudges Fuck Buttons beyond total white-hot wipeout is rhythm. On “Bright Tomorrow”, the penultimate track on the group’s debut, Street Horrrsing, Hung and Power chop up the caustic ectoplasm with the Field’s flicker-flicker ecstasies and a brazen dance-floor-ready thump. (Bernardo Rondeau)
Siberian at the Silverlake Lounge
Importing coy boys with floppy bangs and vintage guitars to Silver Lake is a bit like having hypocrisy shipped to the White House. But Seattle quintet Siberian, though apparently an archetypal indie band, are far from superfluous even on the shoegazer-saturated Eastside, as they actually have some serious songwriting substance amid their well-worn aesthetics. Siberian’s debut full-length, last year’s With Me, is also with Radiohead: thick with the overthinking alienation and questioning vocals of that band’s first two records, but buffed with Interpol’s metropolis sheen, talkative bass and melodramatic dynamics. Remote arpeggios drown in crafted sheets of chord play; bustling beats crave both dance floor and dorm room. Defying its title, With Me is a lonesome record, but comforting too — evoking the night of the breakup next to an open fire. Without a hefty infusion of self-esteem and identity, Siberian will soon be forgotten, but for now this is about as good as melodic, under-the-radar rock gets. (Paul Rogers)
Also playing Thursday:
AGENT ORANGE, D.I. at Crash Mansion; BIRDS OF AVALON, TWILIGHT SLEEP at the Echo; WATKINS FAMILY HOUR at Largo; LESLIE & THE BADGERS at Taix; TIMBIRICHE at Vault 350.
FRIDAY, APRIL 25
Carlene Carter at the Mint
Carlene Carter’s trove of raw talent has often been overshadowed by some unfortunate events. There was that dramatic New Mexico dope bust a few years back and the infamous 1979 show where she announced that she intended “to put the cunt back in country.” The raw witticism likely would have gone unreported except that, unknown to Carlene, her mother June Carter and step-father Johnny Cash were in the audience (Cash probably laughed his ass off). Carter has confronted more than her fair share of disaster — at that time she was on her third doomed marriage (to Nick Lowe) — but returns here to perform numbers from her fine new CD, Stronger. It’s an arresting, individuated set that displays her innate musical gifts, the fruit of a formidable gene pool: She is the daughter of the today under-appreciated Grand Ole Opry honky-tonk star Carl Smith and, of course, June, whose legendary mother, Maybelle, was one of country music’s most important architects. Expect Carter to extend the artistic legacy in high style. (Jonny Whiteside)