The print edition of the Scene's Critics' Picks section accidentally listed this show for tomorrow night. Well, it's tonight. Tuesday. July 22. At The End.
THE BETA MACKS W/THE XYZ AFFAIR Like Electric Light Orchestra scored by Queen while The New Pornographers look on, Brooklyn quartet XYZ Affair bring a dramatic flair to their gilded melodies. Frontman Alex Feder’s fluttering tenor and mannered delivery recall New Pornos’ Carl Newman, particularly when the backing harmonies swell. The band’s educationally themed debut full-length, A Few More Published Studies, matches its baroque pop style with lyrical richness, and the slightly precious air is leavened by chewy, propulsive rhythms. Local headliners The Beta Macks honor their obsolete namesake with a sound hailing from another era. Channeling the dark, gothic strain of new wave, synth fills drown singer/keyboardist Bill McGuire’s narcotized croon, while distorted guitar echoes through the background. 9 p.m. at The End —CHRIS PARKER
Also tonight, The Dirtbombs open for Spiritualized.
THE DIRTBOMBS Despite valiant attempts to broaden our horizons and listen without predjudice to everything that comes across our desks, we have to say most of it is underwhelming to the nth degree. That’s probably because we haven’t been able to get the fiery soul-punk of We Have You Surrounded, the latest LP from Detroit Rock City’s The Dirtbombs, out of our head or off our turntable. The dual-drummered quintet lay down some of the fiercest party grooves known to man—the kind that make speed limits and slow dances into incomprehensible concepts. This is music for reckless driving and tossing glass bottles from rooftops while singing at the top of your lungs—a perfect complement to the pill-popping space-gospel of Spiritualized. Put on your dancing shoes and prepare to have your mind blown. 8 p.m. at City Hall —SEAN L. MALONEY