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The word for the weekend in club shows? Blues. You can take that literally, as in the Triangle Blues Society Showcase, an annual roundup of local blues artists both traditional and contemporary. Or you can take it theoretically, as in Jennyanykind, the swampy, R&B-laced barrelhouse boogie rock group led by Chapel Hill twin brothers Michael and Mark Holland. You can even take it to mean Melissa Swingle, whose band, Trailer Bride, is about as twangy alt-country as you can get, but whose voice and lyrics could bring tears to the most cold-hearted curmudgeon. The Blues Society showcase is going on over two nights this weekend: Friday, June 9, at Cat's Cradle (call 967-9053) and Saturday, June 10, at Berkeley Café (call 821-0777). Jennyanykind will be at Lakeside Lounge on Wilmington Street in downtown Raleigh on Saturday, June 10 (call 833-6557). Finally, Trailer Bride will be at Boo's Hideaway, next to the Studio Theatre on Hillsborough Street in Raleigh (821-4955). --Karen A. Mann

DiamondDiamondDiamondTucson's Calexico, founded by Giant Sand rhythm section John Convertino and Joey Burns (ex-Friends of Dean Martinez) blow into Raleigh like the "stranger with no name" (to the ghostly strains of a día de muertes mariachi band) for a show at King's on June 11. An eclectic mix of Baja Marimba Band/spaghetti western instrumentals and ambient country/folk, Calexico remain enigmatically hard to define (no one-trick burro here). Many of their new songs feature Burns' noir-ish vocals (think Nick Drake or acoustic Neil Young) over tremolo guitars that waver like a distant image in the desert heat. In the middle slot on Sunday is Athens, Ga.'s Macha, an instrumental hybrid (with occasional vocal) that gets compared to everyone from Krautrock pioneers Can to Indonesian folk music. Live, they're engaging and weird. (Read: records aren't too happenin'.) Knife in the Water opens. Call 831-1005 for more info. --Angie Carlson

DiamondDiamondDiamondLocal stars Gerty will act as ringleaders and headliners for Local 506's June 8 "New Wave Review," which also features Illinois natives (and Gerty labelmates) Mathlete, as well as Winterbrief. There's no mistaking it--Gerty play New Wave. Not like The Cars, but new New Wave like Blur or The Dambuilders. Or, dare I say, Superchunk. Even while their sound sometimes careens toward indie rock, the energy and cheekiness is unmistakably New Wave. And that's a good thing. For information, call 942-5506. --Gavin O'Hara

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