An Australian transplant currently calling Nashville home, Anne McCue took a musical detour on sixth album Blue Sky Thinkin’, a candidate for her strongest work ever. Known for her guitar prowess, she expands into jazz and swing in the style of Django Reinhardt and Charlie Christian, adding horns and keyboards for color. While McCue’s other appearances in town have been solo, this time she brings a sax-led trio to better capture the flavor of an irresistible new sound. Rosie Flores rocks six strings afterward.– Jim Caligiuri
Phoenix fivepiece Fayuca Latinizes Sublime with laid-back reggae grooves framing blistering riffs, jubilant horn interludes infusing 2013’s Barrio Sideshow.– Nina Hernandez
Minnesota reclaimed Austin’s answer to Minneapolis.
Est. 1959, Tony Butala and crew still love “The Way You Look Tonight,” 7 & 9:30pm.
Initially conceived as stress relief for the hard-touring Grupo Fantasma, rogue faction Brownout soon took on a life of its own. With its Black Sabbath covers album last year, Brownout Presents Brown Sabbath, the local dual-guitar Latin rock powerhouse comes into its own, taking on the Moody Theater and earning an endorsement from the prince of darkness himself – Ozzy Osbourne.– Nina Hernandez
Backed by 20 years and seven albums, including 2012 conceptual opus I Am Gemini, post-hardcore Nebraskans Cursive wield a touring cellist to sharpen string-heavy cuts from 2003’s The Ugly Organ, their most popular LP reissued on the quartet’s home label Saddle Creek last fall. Preceding Omaha’s emo rockers comes young Philadelphia grit-punk trio Beach Slang, containing members of Pennsylvania buzz-bands Ex-Friends and Crybaby, and guitar-guided prog-rock locals Megafauna, currently readying a follow-up to last year’s Maximalist.– Neph Basedow
“It’s not a book about Sonic Youth, or even the breakup,” considers Kim Gordon, her smoky diction West Coast-tinged. “It’s just ... my story.”
The Rochester-born bassist’s memoir, Girl in a Band, debuts Tuesday. In it, the historically guarded Godmother of Grunge elucidates her 61 years, from a suburban California upbringing by pedagogic parents and a paranoid-schizophrenic brother, to the detailed 2011 dissolution of her 27-year marriage to ex-bandmate Thurston Moore. The mother-of-one lifts the veil in a way that incites readers’ squirming – as a quality autobiography should.
“Some memoirs are just branding books,” she says. “But to be worthwhile, you need to really put something of your true self in. Eventually, you start looking back over your life, thinking, ‘How did I get here?’”
The page-turner, some juicier excerpts recently teased, slights Courtney Love and Lana Del Rey, but it’s insight on Gordon’s “serial liar” ex-husband that trumps.
“I think I was evenhanded,” she offers. “I wasn’t salacious, and I didn’t say anything about people that hadn’t already been said. Like the quote about Billy Corgan.
“I thought ‘Ewww’ at even the mention of Billy, whom nobody liked because he was such a crybaby. But I was trying to explain something sociological about the scene. I didn’t write it just to slack him off.”
Far more interesting than a few fighting words is the narrative’s enlightening portrayal of the implicitly stalwart author, who’s revealed to bear the very vulnerabilities tailing everyone else. That alone prompts far greater understanding of the rock icon.
“People have told me I’m opaque or mysterious or enigmatic or even cold,” she writes. “But more than any of these things, I’m extremely shy and sensitive. ... Once you push past my persona, there aren’t any defenses there at all.”– Neph Basedow
Onetime local tenorman returns to re-raze Congress Avenue jazz joint.