DTCV, NIGHT MECHANIC
(Mississippi Studios, 3939 N Mississippi) DTCV (formerly Détective, currently pronounced "detective") are James Greer (ex-Guided by Voices), Guylaine Vivarat, and Chris Dunn. They've had a very productive couple of years, releasing two EPs (Very Fallen World and Basket of Masks) and a full-length Burger cassette (However Strange) in 2012, plus a big ol' 26-track double album called Hilarious Heaven: a blend of shadowy post-punk dotted with loose sketches/sound snippets and ambitious detours ranging from spacey free jazz to cool pastel bedroom pop to a flute-heavy cover of the Monks' "Shut Up." Think '90s-alternative-style "indie," from its earlier, more respectable days as an adjective. EMILY NOKES
LORD HURON, NIGHT BEDS
(Wonder Ballroom, 128 NE Russell) Evidence suggests there is no such thing as a universal human experience—only that which we encounter and perceive as individuals—but I'll be damned if I'm the only person in this world who has driven much too fast while blaring Lord Huron's "The Man Who Lives Forever." It is an invincibility ballad guaranteed to soothe even the most persistent existential agita. In fact, the band's entire Lonesome Dreams album is pretty life affirming; it coaxes one to get out and explore. And while founder/guitarist/vocalist Ben Schneider does deal with this matter lyrically—he himself made the pilgrimage from the Midwest to California—the stringed instruments, keys, and aerial voices stretching out across the album's tracks do well to fully evoke the freedom (dare I say, universally) inspired by the wide open spaces of the West. RAQUEL NASSER
JAKE BUGG, ALBERT HAMMOND JR., THE SKINS
(Crystal Ballroom, 1332 W Burnside) Of all the Strokes' solo careers, Albert Hammond Jr.'s has been one of the subtlest, despite the fact that he's likely the group's most talented songwriter. In his solo work, Hammond has tapped into both meaty, guitar-driven garage rock and synth-led hipster dance-punk, each undertaking brimming with heartfelt sentimentalism and lovesick letters of growing up. That Hammond has basically grown up as a songwriter in front of the whole world is likely a blessing and a curse, but if his new EP, AHJ, is any indication, his willingness to confront his myriad musical muses is still strong, especially on tracks as carefree as the opener, "St. Justice." It's not as nuanced a pop statement as his 2006 solo debut, Yours to Keep; but AHJ proves that AHJ isn't full of BS. RYAN J. PRADO
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