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03.31.10

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Phaedra

BAR TREK: The Phenomenauts will be at the Crepe Place on Friday ifyou silly Earthlings can handle it.

Music Calendar

March 31 - April 7, 2010


Wednesday | 3/31

REEL BIG FISH

Reel Big Fish is responsible for the sound that has launched a thousand Will Farrell vehicles, or at least it feels like it. As a result, it's easy to take the O.C.-based third-wave ska band for granted, but its longevity speaks to a credibility that many of its peers have lacked. Though the band's popularity spiked in the late '90s with alternative radio staples such as "Sell Out," it's been in the business of making music since 1992 and has weathered more than a few cycles of ska-related boom and bust. Now, with ska overdue for one of its inevitable comebacks, Reel Big Fish is still around to take the lead. Catalyst; $17 adv/$20 door; 8pm. (Paul M. Davis)

Thursday | 4/1

PHOENIX RISING

The flute, with its short length and shrill notes, is sometimes shortchanged as the instrument of mythic nymphs and curious band camp girls. But in the hands of a skilled player, and especially when backed up by a red-hot jazz trio, the flute can be as sexy as any saxophone. If there ever was such a flutist, Andrea Brachfeld is certainly it. With the Latin levels cranked full-blast, Brachfeld sews the soprano notes of her woodwind into flighty and delicate tapestries that drip with sensuality and demand to be savored through every note. Kuumbwa; $12 adv/$15 door; 7pm. (Curtis Cartier)

YONDER MOUNTAIN STRING BAND

If you walked into the Catalyst this Thursday night with no idea who Yonder Mountain String Band was, you'd probably think it a run-of-the-mill indie bluegrass act. But stay and listen awhile and it becomes clear that this Colorado quartet has more under the hood than your standard Crepe Place–playing bearded jug blowers and barefoot warblers. Frontman Jeff Austin leads the team, playing the banjo like a man fresh from the crossroads, and the rest of the band evens it out with complex and inventive country bluegrass that's as progressive as any artsy indie pop act. Catalyst; $20 adv/ $25 door; 8:30pm. (CC)


Friday | 4/2

FAMILY HOGWASH

Maybe it's the redwoods, or maybe it's the omnipresence of acoustic instruments, but Santa Cruz loves its bluegrass. And the recent upswing in young roots-loving pickers is enough to warm the heart of the most crotchety musical traditionalist. Local bluegrass up-and-comer Family Hogwash is introducing mountain music to a budding roots-music audience, winning the praise of old-schoolers for its repertoire of standards and original tunes and building an audience it describes as "drunken dancers and aficionados alike." The show is a fundraiser to record the first Family Hogwash album, so you can help the band get a leg up while it helps you get down. Moe's Alley; $10; 9pm. (Cat Johnson)

MAGNOLIA SISTERS CAJUN BAND

A four-piece outfit of multi-instrumentalists, the Magnolia Sisters Cajun Band isn't made up of sisters— at least in the biological sense—but they are most certainly Cajun. The band is equally comfortable with twin-fiddle rave-ups, resonant Creole stompers and fragile a cappella melodies. Harnessing an encyclopedic knowledge of Creole music, the four women in the Magnolia Sisters Cajun Band resurrect forgotten compositions with infectious abandon. It's about as close to the spirit of the southwest Louisiana bayou as you'll get this close to the Pacific. Don Quixote's; $15; 8pm. (PMD)


Saturday | 4/2

LOS STRAITJACKETS

For the members of Los Straitjackets, last year's The Further Adventures of Los Straitjackets was a chance to return to what they love most: playing instrumental rock & roll. After several years spent working with other people, including Cesar Rosas, Big Sandy and Little Willie G., the retrosurf band is reveling in a return to its fuzzed-out garage-rock beginnings. Famous for its raucous stage shows, guitar theatrics, group choreography and ever-present Mexican wrestling masks, Los Straitjackets is all about having a good time. "We never try to be meaningful," says guitarist Eddie Angel. "Our goal is to bring fun to the party." A portion of the evening's proceeds will benefit the Santa Cruz chapter of the Surfrider Foundation. Moe's Alley; $18 adv/ $20 door; 9pm. (CJ)


Sunday | 4/3

DAVID LINDLEY & BOB BROZMAN

Two great talents, one fantastic show. The chemical result of David Lindley and Bob Brozman together onstage is a virtuosic zaniness guaranteed to knock the socks off any audience. Besides being a famous multi-instrumentalist whose influences range from Celtic to Turkish, Lindley happens to possess a gift for vocal mimicry. Boulder Creek–based Brozman—a master of slide and percussive guitar, with rhythmic persuasions from the blues, jazz, Gypsy swing and Calypso—is also known for randomly spouting foreign language phrases and performing acoustic hand tricks that mimic electronic effects. Rio Theatre; $25–$40; 7:30pm. (Maria Grusauskas)

SEAN HAYES

Having toiled in obscurity for a decade before catching the attention of tastemakers like the Be-Good Tanyas and Aimee Mann, Sean Hayes is now enjoying his greatest success following a prominent song placement on the HBO Jason Schwartzman vehicle Bored to Death. It's an unexpected turn, since his work isn't nearly as glossy as your typical TV soundtrack fare. Hayes' spare sketches have a haunted quality that evoke forgotten corners of Americana. It's unforgiving stuff, bracing in its clarity and lack of self-awareness. Moe's Alley; $15; 8:30pm. (PMD)


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