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Live in L.A.: Vato Negro, Matt Pond PA, Video Games Live, GBH, Fitz & the Tantrums

Bring on the hard stuff: Vato Negro, the side project of the Mars Volta bassist and effects pedal fetishist Juan Alderete, makes instrumental rock that sounds like a soundtrack to a war zone. His collaborators in the latest incarnation of this long-running project (which finally saw an album, "Bumpers" released in 2008) are TMV bandmate Omar Rodriguez Lopez and drummer Deantoni Parks, and the trio is working on an album for release on Sargent House later this year. In what promises to be one loud and improvisational night of music, the threesome Alderete, Rodriguez Lopez and live drummer Jon Theodore are joined tonight at the Echo by Skinwalker (featuring Gabe Serbian and Joey Karam of the Locust); Unfact (with David Wm. Sims of the Jesus Lizard) and Technology (Chris Tsagakis of RX Bandits).

Elsewhere: Video Games Live goes off at the Nokia Theatre -- clusterbunch alert -- right across the street from Game 7 of the NBA Finals. ... Indie-popper Matt Pond PA headlines the Troubadour in support of his sylvan new album "The Dark Leaves." ... Fitz & the Tantrums continue their Thursday residency at Spaceland. ... And GBH rocks it at the Music Box.

Also: Run Run Run at the Silverlake Lounge; Loch Lomond and Hey Marseilles at the Bootleg Theater; Alborosie at the Roxy; Jenny Owen Youngs and Sara Radle at the Hotel Cafe; Theory of Flight at the Viper Room; Murderdolls at the Key Club; Imaad Wasif at the Hobby Shop; Bikos at Pehrspace; Falcon Eddy at Echo Curio; 50 Cent Haircut at 3 Clubs; and Sun Araw at Synchronicity.