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Thursday 8
The China Invasion tour, featuring garage-pop trio Carsick Cars, hits town tonight. The Beijing band’s ‘07 s/t debut caught the eye, er, ear of Thurston Moore, and the cats played some dates with SY in Europe. The Cars’re pulling into Brick by Brick behind last year’s crit hit You Can Listen, You Can Talk. They’re on their way home from SXSW with countrymen AV Okuba and P.K. 14, who’ll set the Bay Park stage. From all their Space takes, this sounds like a hella triple bill and thee gig to get to.... Owatonna, Minnesota’s favorite son, Adam Young, brings his Owl City synthpop show to Soma tonight. Paper Route and Lights go on first.... Vaudevillian road show Mutaytor plugz in at Belly Up with Oakland’s “old-meets-new” trio Beats Antique. Mutaytor, according to the press kit, is a “bombastic, visceral experience, combining an 11-piece modern analog and electronic dance orchestra with 15 performance artists.” Electrohippies.... Bar Pink books L.A. country-fried punks Stab City with local hardcore throwbacks Rats Eyes.... Soda Bar draws a draught of independent rawk with Fever Sleeves, X-Ray Press, and Fkenal, who everyone’s (y’know, “everyone”?) telling me I have to go see.

Friday 9
Casbah’s got a nice long night planned with early (doors at 6p) quirk-pop sets by Moldy Peach guy Adam Green and Angelino psych folkies Dead Trees. Green’s got a new one out on Fat Possum called Minor Love that showcases “a tender side of the often arrogant and emotionally unavailable bully/singer.” Okay, then. And after that’s a traveling DJ dance jam called Blowoff. Big whup, right? Wrong. The DJs are Hüsker Düde Bob Mould and remix guru Richard Morel, so bust out your shiny skids, kids, this is gonna be a fun one.... Bar Pink’s got the other notable show Friday night, staging Weezer teasers Geezer (playing Pinkerton in toto?), those four dudes who call themselves the Secret Seven, and an Alex Chilton tribute by one-off all-star act Little Big Star.... Else: Man at Work Colin Hay appears at Anthology...Agua Dulce does Latin dance jams at the Ken...the ladies take South Park when Bitter Sober and Veronica May roll into Whistle Stop...and Ruby Room wrangles Cattle Decap and Dead Ghosts for one of them hold-your-ears shows.

Saturday 10
Los Straitjackets, Big Sandy and His Fly-Rite Boys, and acoustic duo El Monte Slim fill a greezy-diner bill at Casbah. The masked act is out to tout last year’s Further Adventures of Los Straitjackets. And according to Casbah’s new website (did you see that? It’s pretty cool), Big Sandy’s played the Middletown mainstay more than any other human bean.... Bar Pink rings the bell on another Rumble:San Diego show, featuring Silver Lake indie kids Pepper Rabbit with locals Black Mamba and Writer. Pepper Rabbit’s bouncy piano pop is some tasty fare. Go hare: myspace.com/pepperrabbit.... Beatles-y band Mashtis will throw down a s/t CD-release thing at Ruby Room with Black Hondo, Cozy Corners, and Joey Harris & the Mentals in support for one big barroom-rock bill.... “Night of the Ex’s,” as Soda Bar succumbs to Jungle Fever (ex–Wild Weekend) Saturday night. The Watusis (ex-Atoms), Sharp Objects (ex-Briefs), and Mermaid (ex-somebody, probably) set the stage.

Sunday 11
Couple three four big gigs Sunday night out in the 619! WTF? Elvis Costello’s going to be downtown at the re-did Balboa Theatre. You’re asking yourself: Attractions Elvis or fat Elvis, am I right? (Stage whispering: he’s playing at the mall).... New-wave hippies Psychedelic Horseshit — the band that climbed all over Nathan Williams when Wavves broke — will drop a steamy pile of lo-fi revivalism at Soda Bar. The Columbus quartet plays the same primitive garage-pop Wavves plays without the sugary additives. Woodsist picked them up last year for a pre-career retrospective called Golden Oldies/Shitgaze Anthems. Bend a ready ear here: myspace.com/psychedelichorseshit. Twisted twee-pop duo the Preteens will set the stage with Jeans Wilder and Endless Bummer.... Casbah’s got rootsicana sets by Indiana indie folkies Murder by Death and Ha Ha Tonka. MBD’s latest load of dusted American Gothic, Good Morning, Magpie, dropped last week via Vagrant Records. Last year, the Tonkas came “roaring out of the Ozarks with a bottle in one hand and a Bible in the other” to deliver Bloodshot debut Novel Sounds of the Nouveau South, measuring equal parts Wilco and early REM. NYC’s plucky Linfinity will set the stage.... Blag Dahlia and his horror-core crew the Dwarves’ll stack at Brick by Brick with Hellions, End of Power, Kill Deville, the Strikers, and Goddam Gallows.... Up in the 858, it’ll be Patty Griffin and Scott Miller hummin’ and strummin’ at the Belly Up...and rapid-fire rapper Chris Tafoya, aka Sleep, will expose his Hesitation Wounds at the Loft at UCSD.

Monday 12
Crawlin’ downhill now...you got Canadian chanteuse Serena Ryder doing the honors at this week’s Anti-Monday meet-up at Casbah with Ryan Star and Cuff the Duke. Ryder won a Juno last year for Best Adult Alternative (brows up!) album Is It O.K.... One of the most Pitch-slapped indie-pop bands in the land, Long Island’s As Tall as Lions, ducks into the Loft.

Tuesday 13
It’s a not-so-terrible Tuesday down at Casbah this week, as British singer-songer Holly Golightly and her Brokeoffs will deliver new-roots do Medicine County to the Middletown crowd. Creepy Creeps and Green Stamps up first.... Radio Room dials in some hard-rock and punk-pop sets by Got No Shame, BombPops!, the Getdown, and Being Jared.

Wednesday 14
Ten-forties are due tomorrow, so get out and spend that refund, citizen. Cheap Trick apparently ain’t cheap anymore, as tix for Wednesday night’s set at Belly Up are running up around a hundred bucks. Weren’t they on the free-with-admission county-fair circuit last year? Don’t get me wrong, I love ‘em, but whoa.... Protest folkie Arlo Guthrie and his clan are getting about half that pretty penny over at the California Center for the Performing Arts in Escondido...as is jazz-n-pop guitarist Bill Frisell, who shows at Little It. supper club Anthology.... You owe this year? Me too. Maybe we’d be better off checking out Alan Sparhawk’s Low played loud Retribution Gospel Choir at Casbah with up-and-coming slowcore crew Little White Teeth. That one’s eight bucks at the door. Lend me a fiver?
Barnaby Monk

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