On the opening track of the brand-new indie album from this Asheville-based (by way of Athens, Ga. and Rockland, Me.) acoustic duo, fiddling vocalist Cregan Montague and singing guitarist Danielle Tibedo sing plaintively of their dark darkness, but while theres plenty of allusions to heartache, madness and consuming passion present in the lyrical conceits of the tracks contained in Love Me Like The Roses, this record is by no means a downer. In fact, its quite a leap forward for the pair, both in terms of production value and artistic growth.
While the pair often find themselves likened to the Indigo Girls, theres really only a passing resemblance to that celebrated and trendsetting Atlanta act mostly in divineMAGgees gender, careful vocal harmonies, and palpable willfulness. Stylistically, theyre in their own bag.
As this is the first of their DIY releases to be tracked with full production techniques (as opposed to being little more than live dates cut in a studio setting), it comes across as more fully-realized, but thats also due to the urgency and directness of the material itself. At times haunting, at times liberating, and at all times engrossing, theirs is a sound built on modern folk, but not-so-cautiously stretching towards the realms of both alternative rock and ethereal mood music. Fri., 8 pm, The Sentient Bean.
BlackwÜrm, Kristin Gustafson
This double-bill of unusual local musical artists takes place in tandem with an exhibition of new paintings by Scott Griffin, one of Savannahs most talked-about young visual artists. In fact, both classically-trained harpist Gustafson and the experimental instrumental rock act BlackwÜrm (featuring multi-instrumentalist Ricardo Ochoa, bassist Mike Walker of GAM, and drummer Josh Safer) say that their sets will be (at least partially) inspired by the 2-D work on display.
Gustafson will perform her own original compositions on this most mesmerizing instrument, along with her own unique interpretations of classical pieces. BlackwÜrms set begins at 9 pm, and features material from their brand-new EP, which will be available for sale at the show. Their work which in some ways echoes that of such seminal space-rock icons as Spacemen 3 and Hawkwind will be performed in front of a screen on which a live-mixed video collage of Griffins work will be projected. Fri., 6 pm , Starland Gallery (2424 Bull St.) - ALL AGES.
The Rosebuds, Vermillion X
Signed to the ever-trendy North Carolina label Merge Records (home to Superchunk) only a few shows into their career, this group summoned up a pretty damn dazzling debut CD with The Rosebuds Make Out. Mixing such seemingly disparate elements as vintage Modern Lovers organ/drum set snark, weedy and seedy Feelies-esque acoustic guitar drones, and subject matter that seemed nicked from Morrisseys high-school theme books, that record captured a young group with a sense of purpose, if not much life experience.
Their follow-up is slightly dreamier, but also slightly less of a must-hear. Theyre still crafting vest-pocket singalongs and pogo-worthy rave-ups, but theres less of a sense of urgency to get it all out. Thats likely because theyve been touring cross country with the likes of Teenage Fanclub, and they know this train can probably run till they want to jump the tracks. Female-fronted retro jangle-poppers Vermillion X open with a set of dark, rock drama. Sat., 10 pm, The Jinx.
Chris Sharp/David Long Band
Once more, Randy Wood and his compadrés bring another top-shelf evening of American roots music to town. Sharp toured with the late, great John Hartfords String Band, and was part of both the Grammy-winning soundtrack to O Brother Where Art Thou, and the follow up Down From The Mountain Tour. Long plays Bill Monroe-style mandolin with a dramatic sense of the history that came before him on the instrument. hes well-known in the bluegrass world for his work with The Wildwood Valley Boys and Mike Compton. Theyll fill up this cozy 100-seat hall with intricate, heartwarming country and folk. Advance tickets can be charged online at randywoodguitars.com, or by calling (912) 748-1930. Sat., 7:30 pm, Randy Woods Pickin Parlor (Bloomingdale).
The Al Ortiz Quintet
Many live music enthusiasts will fondly remember the Adagio Jazz Club that existed briefly on the corner of Broughton Street and MLK, Jr., Blvd. One of the most energetic and popular groups to play that showcase room was Ya Gozo, a Latin jazz outfit from Jacksonville. They received such a tremendous reception here in town that they wound up cutting a live 2-CD set on that very same stage. Now Ortiz (one of the bands leaders) is back in the area for a rare gig at this chic supper club. For years now, The Jazz Corner has been the most reliable venue for both regional acts and (occasionally) big name touring artists, and as this is likely the closest Ortiz and his brand of high-octane danceable jazz will come to us anytime soon, its worth the drive for those who care about such things. Call ahead for reservations at (843) 842-8620. Fri. - Sat., 7:30 pm, The Jazz Corner (Hilton Head).