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CL Previews Upcoming Shows

DMX, The Secretions, others

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Wednesday July 18

DMX Dark Man X, the sensitive, God-loving thug from Yonkers AKA Earl Simmons is back! He saw a few hiccups, incurring two arrests this year for pulling a "Paris" (driving with an expired license) and assault while under the influence (weed, not crack). His Dog Days of Summer Tour is in support of last year's release Year of the Dog ... Again. With Bazaar Royale. Amos' Southend (Calloway)

THURSDAY July 19

The Secretions The Secretions, long-running goodtime punk trio from Cali, light up gin joints and house parties the moment they hit the first chord. The oh-so-catchy chord progressions a-la the Ramones on their newest release, Faster Than the Speed of Drunk, should keep the dance floor hopping. Also on the bill: Bout It Boys & Kentucky Prophet, and Final Summation. Milestone (Shukla)

FRIDAY July 20

The Clarks This working man's indie rock band is approaching the 20-year mark. Chalk up its longevity to a work ethic and wide touring, all the while never letting up on the pedal of its country-laden rock. The Pittsburgh quartet's live shows are geared to get the crowd rolling. And they do. Sons of William will open. Visulite (Shukla)

Matisyahu The novelty, a Hasidic Jew singing about traditional Judaism backed with reggae and hip-hop beats, may have worn off. But Matisyahu, nee Matthew Miller, has consistently performed and released recordings since his debut in 2004, proving he's not an oddball act. His muse is not too far fetched, as Zion is the mythical destination of Jews and Rastas alike. Opening for 311. Verizon Wireless Amphitheatre (Shukla)

The Ray Gradys Now 11 years into their DIY-or-die "career" (truly, some folks don't just do it for the money) The Ray Gradys have road tested their schizo take on West Coast-peppered, CBGBs-style punk and hardcore more times than Barry Bonds has artfully dodged questions about the cream and the clear. Originally from Charlotte and now calling the City of Brotherly Love home, the boys are six albums in, and, unencumbered by label pressures and the like, don't plan on slowing their roll anytime soon. With The Red State, Big Attack. The Milestone (Davis)

SATURDAY July 21

Mego Dirge Up and coming Charlotte-based grunge rock trio Mego Dirge are still a tad on the raw side, but seem fully capable of evolving. Opening for the always rocking Babyshaker, which should make for a spunky double-header. Snug Harbor (Shukla)

SUNDAY July 22

Gravy Train!!!! Poppy musical gluttony that features songs that sound like they're straight out of the '80s about sex clubs, frat parties and mutual masturbation by four band members named Chunx, Funx, Hunx and Junx. Don't expect the campy humor to win a grammy, but they're sure to keep the audience entertained. With songs like "Solo j/o" and "Strip 4 Me," a sense of humor is required. Tremont Music Hall (Hahne)

Lamb Handler I always wonder why people are afraid of experimenting with a new band. Pay the cheap cover; check out the band; have a few drinks; go home. If you like them, great. If not, move on. At least give them a chance. With local rockers Lamb Handler, you'll get some straight up rock 'n' roll. Their album The Shepherds of Rock actually gave me some Foo Fighters vibes. Singer Tony Buckner's got moments of falsetto and the music is simplistic without being boring or sounding amateur. It's a fine way to spend $6 on a Sunday. With Kimosabe and Up with the Jonses. The Milestone (Hahne)

TUESDAY July 24

Leah Randazzo Randazzo sounds like an accomplished jazz vocalist, even at such a youthful age, but she also expands her voice to sing some mighty smoking blues. Round it all off with touches of R&B and funk and the modus operandi is soulful blues accented with horns. She composes her own material and steps into multi genres with the help of her septet. Double Door Inn (Shukla)

The Umbrellas More or less a vehicle for songwriter Scott Windsor (who most recently performed as the Lyndsay Diaries), The Umbrellas (besides having a cool moody/mod name that I'm utterly shocked someone hadn't already taken, like some late '60s-era Zombies knockoff at the very least) debuted in spring 2005 with a self-titled collection of Death Cab-hailing personal pop. In July of last year, the band released their sophomore record, Illuminare with an ever-evolving coterie of studio stylists, including folks from Starlight Mints and Pedro the Lion. With Lola Ray, Heartwood, and Sequoyah Prep School. Tremont Music Hall (Davis)

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