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Music worth leaving the house to hear this week

Les Savy Fav, Detatchment Kit
Cat's Cradle
Thursday, Sept. 16

Sometimes it seems like art school is meant more to meet bandmates than to become a world-renowned visual artist. So it was with Les Savy Fav, who met while attending art school in Rhode Island and developed into a throttling post-punk act with much of Fugazi's angularity and a touch of the Fall's off-beat sense of imminent implosion. Detachment Kit are their spiritual brothers, with a similar churning sound but more of a pop jones, thanks to frequent straightforwardly melodic bits and a bit of Sunny Day Real Estate's sense of musical drama. --Chris Parker

Sitar and Sarod Duet/Tabla
Bickett Gallery
Friday, Sept. 17

Viswas Chitnis is the local sitar hero at the helm of the Futurock collective and behind the axe for the rock-hop outfit Pro-L. He will be joined by John Heitzenrater for a sarod and sitar duet, followed by a tabla concert said to feature a clay pot routine thanks to Chris Johnson and Branavan Ganesan. Local rockers Reid Johnson (Schooner) and Daniel Vaughn (Mothlight) will be on hand in all of their solo glory, and The May Family Reunion--one guy with one guitar and a load of pedals--opens. --Grayson Currin

Guitar Shorty
Blue Bayou
Friday, Sept. 17

Guitar Shorty doesn't just feel the blues, he gets down and literally rolls in 'em. The 64-year-old Texas guitarist, once known as much for his headstands and backflips as for his guitar playing, has toned down the acrobatics a bit in recent years, but the fire is still in his playing, which once caused Jimi Hendrix to go AWOL to hear him and is said to have also influenced Buddy Guy. On his latest Alligator release, Watch Your Back, Shorty sets fire to his own compositions, then takes on Stevie Ray taking on Elvis in "A Little Less Conversation" and reworks Van Morrison's "I've Been Working" into a wailing blues wallow. --Grant Britt

Jon Shain Trio
Six String Cafe
Saturday, Sept. 18

At least a couple people no doubt became acquainted with Jon Shain when he shared the stage with Ian Anderson for a tune at the Tullmeister's Carolina Theatre show last fall. But area roots music fans have known about Shain for years courtesy of his work in the bands Flyin' Mice and WAKE, as well as his three solo releases. His latest, No Tag, No Tail Lights, parks itself halfway between Piedmont blues and John Hiatt's Crossing Muddy Waters to great effect. --Rick Cornell

Reverend Horton Heat, Dexter Romweber
Lincoln Theatre
Saturday, Sept. 18

You'd be hard-pressed to find a better matched pair than the Rev and Dex. Both are masters of reverb-ridden rockabilly and old-time rock 'n' roll, parlayed with a passion for searing hot licks. Romweber doesn't play with quite as much manic punk energy as Heat and exhibits a bit more stylistic breadth, dipping his toes into some blues on his latest, Blues That Defy My Soul. The Reverend does stretch his subject matter on his latest, Revival, briefly departing from his celebration of sex, drugs, booze and cars for a pair of more serious songs: "Indigo Friends," lamenting friends lost to heroin, and "Someone In Heaven," a country weeper dedicated to his departed mother. Both are notable live performers, as well. --Chris Parker

Her Space Holiday, Neotropic
Local 506
Saturday, Sept. 18

Transpose the luxuriant, slumbering, atmospheric texture of dream pop and slowcore acts such as Galaxie 500 and Movietone onto a hard drive, excise the drums in favor of thrumming breakbeats, and embellish with synthetic strings and burbling electronics, and you'll have the basis for a Her Space Holiday album. Marc Bianchi's sadsack romanticism provides the emotional impetus for his pretty, bubbling electro-pop. Neotropic is arguably the most accomplished female in the experimental electronic movement, melding ambient, dub, breakbeat and downtempo into tense soundtracks for thrillers yet to be filmed. --Chris Parker

The Moaners, John Howie Jr.
The Cave, Saturday
Sept. 18

Bands twice their size don't pack the bite of The Moaners' duo of Laura King and Melissa Swingle. After more than a decade in laconic, goth-country act Trailer Bride, Swingle's apparently ready to kick out the jams, and no MF better stand in her way. Thick guitar chords reign down like sheetrock from a shoddily constructed campus apartment complex, shaken by the band's generous vibrations. They're joined by Two Dollar Pistol himself, John Howie, Jr., a muscularly throated ex-pounder whose move to the forefront brought to life the area's preeminent honky-tonk act. --Chris Parker

Hungry Mind Review
The Cave
Sunday, Sept. 19

Named for the vanguard literary criticism journal founded way up in Minnesota way back in 1986, Wilmington's Hungry Mind Review recently released one of the finest records to come out of Mitch Easter's prolific-of-late Fidelitorium Studio in years. Given that frontman Stephan Bayley has his Isobel Campbell in honey-voiced violinist Stephanie Wallace, it's no wonder that this painstakingly arranged dream pop could easily be mistaken for some trans-Atlantic hybrid of Arab Strap Belle & Sebastian charm and vintage Roxy Music smarts. --Grayson Currin

Thee Shams, Jimmy & The Sleazers
Local 506
Sunday, Sept. 19

Hot damn! Thee Shams make Aerosmith's recent back-to-the-roots, blues folly Honkin' on Bobo seem like a shame by way of their raw, teeth-clenching amalgamation of hardcore hallucinogenic rock 'n' roll and an all-liquored-up love of the blues cemented around two guitars and a well-worn drum attack. These five Cincinnati boys that sound like savage Stones out of the Dirty South may have upset a hometown gal by plopping her candid nudie shot on the cover of their sophomore 2004 burner Please Yourself, but--rest assured--they've been making hordes of straight-no-chaser, blues-based rock fans listen, drink and drool. --Grayson Currin

The Muffs
Cat's Cradle
Sunday, Sept. 19

Like the greasy spoons and decrepit diners dotting interstates from here to San Jose, pummeling pop-punk persists whether in bland iterations like Blink-182 or in unsung, never-say-die veterans such as The Muffs. Like Seattle's (lamentably demised) Fastbacks, the Kim Shattuck-led trio plays with rambunctious spirit spewing chunky, golden guitar nuggets like some musical slot machine reading "Cherry Bomb-Cherry Bomb-Cherry Bomb." Guitar-fueled spurts of joy leap from the speakers with the spontaneous charm of a brief alley interlude with the spunky, short-skirted waitress. Bool-Yah!--Chris Parker

David Byrne
Carolina Theater
Sunday, Sept. 19

The only thing predictable about David Byrne is that he'll be unpredictable. He showed up at a local club a few years back to do his usual shambling contortions dressed in his version of a Nudie suit--not the glittery kind favored by country artists, but a skintight spandex number painted to look like he'd been flayed alive. Byrne has allegedly toned it down some for his current My Backwards Life tour, dressing in a brown UPS look-alike uniform to perform funky pop and classical variations of the world music he promotes on his own Luaka Bop label, as well as Talking Heads classics like "Psycho Killer."--Grant Britt

Tim Lee & Lamont Skylark
Ooh La Latte
Sunday, Sept. 18

Now four albums deep into a solo career, it's past time to retire the Windbreaker-centric "played Lennon to Bobby Sutliff's McCartney" tagline that's doggedly followed Tim Lee from Jackson, Miss., to Knoxville, Tenn. Lee's new No Discretion is a guitar-rock record delivered with garage-bred fervor, no apologies, and the subliminal suggestion that it's time for listeners to look forward instead of backward. Opening for Lee and his road-tested band is Wilmington's Lamont Skylark, an outfit that sounds a little like Wilco used to back before folks started making movies and writing books about them. --Rick Cornell

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