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Music worth leaving the house to hear this week

Get Out 

Music worth leaving the house to hear this week

Van Hoy Farms in Union Grove
Thursday-Sunday, July 22-25

Bob Robertson's Union Grove pet of a festival can't stop growing. In its tenth year, Smilefest is now perhaps the state's premiere jam band rendezvous spot, bringing together such heavyweights as Allman sound-meets-Coltrane outfit The Derek Trucks Band, trip-hop infused New Orleans jazz band Galactic and the future of progressive acoustic guitar playing in the flesh, Keller Williams. Other notables for these three days of happiness, hemp and Birkenstocks include Umphrey's McGee, Leftover Salmon, Mike Marshall, Antibalas Afrobeat Orchestra, Deep Fried and Burning Spear. Three-day passes are $100 at the gate. --Grayson Currin

Butch Walker, American Hi-Fi, The Bleeding Hearts
Lincoln Theatre
Thursday, July 22

One-time Letters to Cleo & Veruca Salt stick man Stacy Jones sought to recreate the energy of Cheap Trick and ended up the Diet Dr. Pepper of Good Charlotte punk-pop bands. Butch Walker's hit, "Freak of the Week," came with Marvelous 3, and in it he at least had qualms about selling out. --Chris Parker

The Butchies, LKN, The Midnight Gladness Band, The Last Nerves
Ooh La Latte
Friday, July 23

Butchies' guitarist Kaia Wilson says the band is excited about this show for a couple of reasons: First, that there's a cool new venue in Durham and, second, because Portland's LKN features Lauren K. Newman, a truly kickin' guitar player. It's an all-ages show, costs only six bucks and starts around 8 p.m. or so.

Patty Hurst Shifter, The Nevers, The Sammies
Pour House
Saturday, July 24

I'd like to imagine that the announcement stating Patty Hurst Shifter would not be breaking up despite a report to the contrary in the News & Observer averted window hops from three or four Guitartown members, but I think that may be a bit exaggerated. It is fortunate, though, that Ron Bartholomew was able to step in for Johny Williams on bass and keep one of this town's best guitar-blazing acts around. They'll be joined by Bartholomew's more R.E.M.-centric project, The Nevers, and the exceptionally energetic, up-from-Wadesboro boys, The Sammies. --Grayson Currin

Modern Troubadours in the Round:
Abra Moore, Jeffrey Gaines, Ben Arthur, Vienna Teng
Carrboro ArtsCenter
Saturday, July 24

If your conception of troubadours is that of wispy folk singers trilling about lost loves or quests for the Holy Grail, the Modern Troubadours in the Round quartet will shake you up a bit. Waif-like Lilith Fair alumna and former Poi Dog Pondering vocalist Abra Moore's work is a blend of Rickie Lee Jones and former New Bohemian Edie Brickell's off-kilter croonings. Jeffrey Gaines takes on a couple of soul and pop classics on his Live album and DVD, turning in a moving version of Sam Cooke's "A Change is Gonna Come" and a chart-topping rendition of Peter Gabriel's "In Your Eyes." Vienna Teng is heralded as the second coming of Sarah McLachlan. --Grant Britt

Chicks Rock benefit for Ms. Film Festival
Ooh La Latte
Saturday, July 24

The Chicks Rock shows are a series to help promote women in rock and an upcoming film festival on the theme by the good people at Ms. Films. This show features Roxotica, Fashion Design and Hotel Motel--three bands that prove that, uh, you know. Get your Chicks Rock punchcard and a free T-shirt if you go to all three shows. The show starts at 9 p.m. and costs $6.

The Greatest Hits, The Blackouts, Mothlight
Saturday, July 24

With the second night of the Futurock weekend at Kings (the first on Friday will feature Schooner, Pro-L and a now four-piece Pink Slips), expect the rock and plenty of it. The Greatest Hits play messy, rough-and-tumble garage music full of big hangovers and lousy women. They'll play a string of shows with The Blackouts, an in-your-face act hailing from Illinois, where they recently took first place in their regional Little Steven's Underground Garage Battle of the Bands. Mothlight plays two-piece, blues-injected prog rock with guitarist Daniel Vaughn and The Cherry Valence's Nick Whitley. --Grayson Currin

Disco Rodeo
Sunday, July 25

Imagine: The hottest tag-team of producers in the world of pop--known best for their sleek, propulsive and ass-shaking grooves donned by Britney Spears, Jay-Z, Usher and a laundry list of stars adored by your niece or daughter--break the habit of hi-gloss hits with their own three-piece rock act. Enter The Neptunes dressed in N.E.R.D. clothing, which is, in essence, the souled-out, piano-laced pop/rock outfit of Virginia Beach's producers, Chad Hugo and Pharrell Williams. These guys don't do too much without having very much fun, so watch out: This one should be a celebration. --Grayson Currin

I See Hawks in L.A.
Pour House
Sunday, July 25

These cowboys make it clear that their focus is cosmic, but from a very L.A. viewpoint. From the languorous strains of "The Beautiful Narcotic Place I Reside" to their debut album's eponymous title, "I See Hawks in L.A." (a call for California to fall back in the ocean and let the snakes take over), this Burrito Brothers update run by a group of self-proclaimed eco-radicals rattles the cage of country with psychedelic overtones and Byrds--like harmonies. This one starts early, with doors at 4 p.m. --Grant Britt

Dave Matthews Band, Robert Earl Keen, Pico vs. Island Trees
Alltel Pavilion
Monday, July 26

Since the 2001 release of its half-folly, half-transition Everyday, the Charlottesville-based Dave Matthews Band has been touring essentially with the same overtaxed material. This year, though, the "organic" rock quintet of violin, saxophone and a memorable drum attack is back with its first batch of new songs in four tours, and they seem to suggest that the more zealous side of Matthews' songwriting persona has returned full-force. And how's this for a renaissance after a decade-plus: producers for the band's upcoming seventh album may include Dr. Dre, Daniel Lanois and Pharrell Williams. --Grayson Currin

The Good Life, Dave Dondero
Go! Room 4
Monday, July 26

The alter ego of Cursive's singer/guitarist Tim Kasher, The Good Life is the ironically titled repository for Kasher's quieter compositions. Kasher wears his Cure influences on his sleeve with gloomy synth and drum machines percolating in the background amidst mechanistic clangs and off-beat touches that echo Tom Waits. Opening act Dave Dondero is a terrific itinerant songwriter whose wandering heart is as curious as it is tattered on his latest album, The Transient. --Chris Parker

Lincoln Theatre
Tuesday, July 27

Ripton Hilton was a struggling Jamaican DJ with a string of mostly miss singles trying to make a name for himself in the late '70s while losing a string of bets placed on his favorite racehorse, Eek-A-Mouse. When he finally made that horse's moniker his own, though, reggae popularity and influence instantly became the Mouse's second nature. At six-feet, six-inches and with a knack for outlandish stage get-ups, Eek-A-Mouse is an electrifying entertainer. --Grayson Currin

James McMurtry
Go! Room 4
Tuesday, July 27

Most of James McMurtry's songs play out like taut, quirky short stories (except "Choctaw Bingo," which plays out like a sprawling novel), driven by characters who, although you wouldn't necessarily want to be their neighbor, make interesting one-bar-stool-over company for a couple hours. Plus--and this fact is frequently overlooked--McMurtry can sure play guitar. Head out to Go! and find out why McMurtry's Live in Aught-Three is one of the best releases of aught-four. --Rick Cornell

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