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Monday 11.03



The Hold Steady
  • The Hold Steady
The Hold Steady, Drive-By Truckers
Lincoln Theatre—What a joy it's been to have watched as The Hold Steady and Drive-By Truckers—one, a New York-via-Minneapolis band spouting hypertextual dioramas over classic rock heroics; the other, brilliant Georgia-via-Alabama hooligan building character case studies over sturdy Southern alchemy—have climbed to the highest of critical accolades and, slowly but steadily, gathered diverse, allegiant, dreamy crowds. A half-dozen logical connections make this union of North and South likely. Both make literate rock 'n' roll driven by stories and stacks of well-worn vinyl references. Both reference Rick Danko by name in one song. Both pull from Bruce Springsteen's better inclinations, treating their woebegone characters with hope and reverence. But those are only symptomatic of the common root that runs through two of American rock's treasures: The Hold Steady and Drive-By Truckers are bands that have kept their eyes open, looking for their microcosm's best stories and chronicling them in their own region's vernacular. With The Hold Steady, you get Holly, who's a hood rat, at a party with Trevor, who's clever; with the Truckers, you get Bob, the effeminate Southern church boy who's as sweet as tea, and Buford Pusser, the infamously prohibitive Tennessee sheriff. You'll recognize these characters when you hear them, even the first time. But better buy your tickets ($23-$25) early: The Hold Steady sold out Cat's Cradle in August, and the Truckers' last Cradle stand lasted two nights. The co-headlining tour, calling itself "Rock and Roll Means Well," hits stage at 8:30 p.m. —Grayson Currin

William Fitzsimmons
The Pour House—Bedroom singer-songwriter? Not quite. Though the bearded William Fitzsimmons gathers plenty of Iron & Wine comparisons, he's actually closer to Sufjan Stevens, wherever the hell he's been. He doesn't measure up to either one quite yet: With lyrics a little too sensitive, vocals a little too sweet and production values a little too high, The Sparrow and The Crow, Fitzsimmons' third full-length and the first that wasn't self-produced and recorded, shifts the "bedroom" tag to refer to where the music might be played, not where it was conceived. John Mayer turns indie folk? Maybe, and maybe that's better than it sounds. Fitzsimmons shares the stage (and Grey's Anatomy credits) with Slow Runner, a mature pop quartet from Charleston, S.C. Caitlin Crosby also plays this Paste-presented tour. Pay $10-$12 for the 9 p.m. show. —Spencer Griffith

Super-Monday Mock Election
The Artscenter—Has this election got your kids intrigued by the process of democracy? The ArtsCenter is conducting a "V.I.T. Curriculum" and mock election today. Voting booths are set up for school-age children to cast ballots for president, senator, governor and lieutenant governor. The booths will be open from 9 a.m.-5 p.m. For more information, e-mail or visit and click the "youth" tab. —David Fellerath

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