Long Beach trio Tijuana Panthers play punky power-pop, sure, but they're also iconoclasts among iconoclasts. Like the Buzzcocks or The Modern Lovers, they confront the existential with a few well-chosen chords and a lot of catchy choruses. (Example: “Summer Fun,” the most unsettling song about summer fun probably ever.) Their newest, Wayne Interest (on Innovative Leisure), connects them with producer genius Richard Swift, who makes them sound tougher, sweeter and sadder all at once. There's still plenty of Posh Boy DNA in here – if the Panthers had been around in 1979, they'd for sure have been on the Beach Blvd compilation – but there's plenty that recalls guitar philosophers such as The Verlaines and The Feelies, too. And they close with an outta-nowhere sweet soul song, just to make sure you'll keep expecting the unexpected.
Tue., June 3, 8:30 p.m., 2014
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