Protomartyr, Amanda X, Natural Causes | Kings | Clubs & Concerts | Indy Week
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Photo by Zak Bratto


Protomartyr, Amanda X, Natural Causes 

When: Tue., Oct. 20, 8:30 p.m. 2015
Price: $10-$12


It's easy to get caught up in the momentum of the music that the Detroit band Protomartyr makes. The jagged guitars, swiveling at will through a rhythm section that seems intent to hit every meter hard, are mesmerizing, zigging and zagging in patterns that you want to trace like shooting stars. But don't get so lost in the motion, or the deadpan flair of lead singer Joe Casey's voice, that you miss the words he's singing and the band is soundtracking. One of the sharpest and most overlooked songwriters in the loose realm of indie rock, Casey writes verses and choruses that pack hyperlinked references to his views on his beloved and embattled Detroit and the world at large into songs you too want to sing. In that league, he's on par with Joanna Newsom and John Darnielle, Dan Bejar and Craig Finn. "That fall from grace, knocked me on knees/Don't tell anyone, it's what I wanted," he admits during the hook of "Pontiac 87," a bittersweet and poignant tune that uses the cityscape as a memory map. Three albums into a pretty flawless catalog, Protomartyr now ranks as one of the best new American rock bands, so long as you take care to notice all the action at once. With Amanda X and Natural Causes. 8:30 p.m., $10–$12, 14 W. Martin St., Raleigh, 919-833-1091, —Grayson Haver Currin

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