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CL previews upcoming shows

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THURSDAY, SEPT. 11

Mudphonic Hailing from Austin, Texas, the blues rockers Mudphonic have an organic feel surrounding their sound. The groove isn't forced and the funk checks in often. There's the southern rock edge with drawl-drenched songs like "Yonder Funk" expanding their take on Texas blues. Mudphonic are currently on the road in support of their recording Music for Dorothy. Opening for Benevento Russo Duo. Visulite (Samir Shukla)

FRIDAY, SEPT. 12

The Houstons If you ever saw the old "Houston Brothers" live, you'll understand why tonight's return to duo status is such a treat: Justin Faircloth drums and plays organ while keeping the beat on a drum-cymbal set-up, and brother Matt plays bass pedals with bare feet while manning the electric guitar. Sound crazy? It is. But two people playing four instruments is nothing compared to how the same two people seem to become one on every song. The laid-back harmonies always seem to be comprised of equal parts resignation and rejoicing, and the mid-tempo shuffle of the songs works perfectly whether one's settling in for the evening or preparing to take the town by storm. In a word, balance. With North Elementary and Barton Carroll. Snug Harbor (Timothy C. Davis)

SATURDAY, SEPT. 13

Sunshone Still The Columbia-based songwriter – aka Chris Smith – turned in one of 2007's dark horses, a 17-song concept album/character study of frontiersman Kit Carson based on Hampton Sides' excellent biography, Blood & Thunder. On Ten Cent American Novels, Smith's narratives are infused with a cinematic high-and-lonesome feel or frontier-town swagger, and the arrangements – which include horns, reeds and strings – sound like early Calexico as played by Sufjan Stevens' band. With Hannah Miller. Evening Muse (John Schacht)

The Afromotive This Asheville funk, rock and jazz combo gets an African twist courtesy of djembe player Adama Dembele from Cote d'Ivoire, West Africa. Their mix of American funk and Afrobeat is thickly inlaid with grooves that few can resist bobbing their heads in approval. Sure there's an indelible '70s vibe, but that's half the fun. Their recent recording, Scare Tactics, is stacked with horns and guitars that shimmy and shake. Double Door Inn (Shukla)

Lefty Williams Lefty's latest disc, Snake Oil, was released in July and features Tinsley Ellis. The guitarist may not have a right hand, but that doesn't stop him from playing – he uses a prosthetic pick – a mixture of rock, blues and jazz. Watching him play is inspiring, but damn if the music's not good too! U.S. National Whitewater Center and Tosco Music Party at CPCC (Hahne)

SUNDAY, SEPT. 14

Matt Keating The New Yorker's muscular twang rock, folk-flavored ballads and power pop melodies have earned him a small-but-vociferous following since he first emerged in the mid-'90s. But while many of his peers enjoyed higher profiles during Americana's heyday, Keating remained mostly a cult figure, regularly turning out thoughtful records recalling the likes of Chuck Prophet, Matthew Sweet and Elliot Smith. His latest, the double-disc Quixotic, doesn't break with Keating tradition, and its charms tend to reveal themselves cumulatively. With Ben Henry and Coma League. Milestone (Schacht)

Horse the Band Not to be confused with Band of Horses – please, please don't confuse them with Band of Horses, a group who actually seeks to make meaningful emotion connections with their music, instead of relying on bullshit "ironic" ping-pong Casio rolls and Dream Theatre-like guitar wank, tying it together with tortured party-boy lyrics about (about?) nothing much at all – Horse the Band does have a pretty funny bio you can find online. Which says a lot about bands like HTB these days – more white-belted "friends" than fans. Consider them a "404 – Page Not Found" error waiting to happen. With HeavyHeavyLowLow and So Many Dynamos. Tremont Music Hall (Davis)

MONDAY, SEPT. 15

Earthride Any band lurking in the back alleys of doom rock will inevitably evoke the gods that were Black Sabbath. There are many outfits doing the doom thing but count Earthride among the more choice picks in the crop. The band's ode to Motorhead, via the throaty vocals, also blasts into the mix while the bass-heavy foundation and droning guitars amp-up their live shows with heaviness. The band is akin to a slow moving bulldozer shaking the earth and thrashing all in its path. With Hope and Suicide. Milestone (Shukla)

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