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Revolution Hall, Friday

It is important for you to know that we here at Metroland like to think of metal music in terms of Voltron. (We like to think of a lot of things in terms of Voltron.) That being said, this Friday a load of individual robot lions are going to show up to rock Revolution Hall. Dave Ellefson (original bassist for Megadeth and for his project F5), guitarist Alex Skolnick (of Testament, playing with the Alex Skolnick Trio) and guitarist Marc Rizzo (of Soulfly, playing with the Marc Rizzo Band) plan to rock Troy on their own terms. Sure, it is awesome to have Voltron to show up in a fight, but let’s be honest: Having three or four 10-ton mechanical lions on your side really isn’t that bad either. If Prince Lotor shows up this Friday, he’s getting hurt. (July 7, 8 PM, $15, 425 River St. Troy, 274-0053)

The Brides

Valentine’s, Saturday

The Brides are coming through town this weekend for the first stop on what they’re calling “Space Tour 2006.” The Brides (who, on their Web site, say that they look like a mix between “four silent movie era horror stars, a fascist sports franchise and an absurdist work of art”) were founded in 2002 and have since released a slew of well-received EPs, not to mention their self-titled debut on Hell’s Hundred Records in ’03. Over the past few years, they’ve carved a place for themselves in the revival of the death-rock movement, appearing at festivals and on comp albums. New York Press has called their live show “a no-nonsense high-energy pummeling of raw guitars that make surprisingly dynamic roller-coaster dips between the Ventures and Rudimentary Peni.” Wow. We’re sold. The Flying Buttresses and Sunset Aside are also on the bill. (July 8, 8 PM, $15, 17 New Scotland Ave., Albany, 432-6572)


Red Square, Saturday

Okemah, named for Woody Guthrie’s hometown, are a quartet of local guys who cite as their individual musical influences everyone from Leadbelly and Patsy Cline to B.B. King and Jeffrey Clemens of G. Love & Special Sauce. They respect folk and the alt-country genres, and it’s obvious in their sound. The band, who call themselves the “bastard sons of American Roots music,” were recently featured on Jason Keller’s Big Break. If you missed this sampling of songs from Okemah, check out their Web site at and catch up, or make the trip to downtown Albany to see them at Red Square this weekend. (July 8, 9 PM, $5, 388 Broadway, Albany, 432-8584)

beth orton

Beth Orton

Calvin Theater, Sunday

Beth Orton may be the only artist this side of Sublime to have been granted the release of a “Definitive Collection” after only three albums. But then those albums, especially Orton’s wonderful 1996 debut, Trailer Park, announced the arrival of a big talent—and, as luck would have it, the subgenre often referred to as folktronica. Comfort of Strangers, her first release in four years, has been touted for its “extraordinarily personal, almost naked and most certainly honest emotional qualities.” The album marks not only a return to the limelight, but perhaps her best collection of songs so far; most importantly, it features plenty of the black-tea-with-honey voice that’s endeared her to so many listeners. You can hear that voice in person when Beth Orton takes the Calvin Theater stage this weekend. Clayhill will open. (July 9, 8 PM, $24, 19 King St., Northampton, Mass., 413-584-1444)


Northern Lights, Wednesday

We’ll decline this opportunity to complain about the increasing presence of the violin in modern-rock music. We should point out, however, that Jacksonville, Fla.-based quintet Yellowcard do seem to have carved out a bit of a niche in the overcrowded emo-pop rat race, and it may well have something to do with that damn violin. So there’s that. The group’s second major-label effort, Lights and Sounds, debuted at No. 5 on the Billboard Pop Albums chart in January, but only now, with the second single (“Rough Landing, Holly”) hitting radio, does it seem like the record is developing legs. Only time will tell; in the meantime, they’re doing what bands do, taking their act anywhere and everywhere (they’re currently booked through late September), which includes a stop in Clifton Park this week. Matchbook Romance, Rock Kills Kid, and Hedley are also on the bill. (July 12, 7 PM, $26, 1208 Route 146, Clifton Park, 371-0012)

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