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Alive at Five, Thursday

All four original members of early-1980s post-prog supergroup Asia—Steve Howe (Yes), John Wetton (King Crimson), Carl Palmer (Emerson, Lake, etc.), and Geoff Downes (Buggles!)—are back together, working on a new album, touring, the whole nine. Granted, there’s been little if any clamor for an Asia reunion, but with bands like the Happy Mondays and Jesus and Mary Chain doing their part to reinstate 1989 nostalgia, someone needs to keep the Spirit of ’82 alive. (And Downes needs to eat.) So “Don’t Cry,” Asia fans. “Only Time Will Tell” if “The Smile Has Left Your Eyes.” In the “Heat of the Moment,” you could be the “Sole Survivor” . . . and, we’re spent. Hector on Stilts will open this evening’s free show. (June 21, 5 PM, free, Albany Riverfront Park, Corning Preserve, Albany, 434-2032)

Old Songs Festival

Altamont Fairgrounds, Friday-Sunday

Now into its 27th year, the Old Songs Festival of Traditional Music and Dance is beginning to expand its focus beyond the standard folk and Celtic fare, although this year’s lineup still features a wealth of that kind of thing, including the Scottish sounds of Bodega, Cajun goodness from the Magnolia Sisters, traditional Irish music from the David Munnelly Band, and Canadian musical-comedy trio the Arrogant Worms. In the way of expansion, the festival adds a bit of what we believe is still called “world music” from Malinese kora virtuoso Mamadou Diabate. Of course there are dozens more performers, plus participatory dance events, workshops and classes, so we suggest you check out the Web site ( for the full schedule before heading off to Altamont. (June 22-24, prices and times vary, Route 146, Altamont, 765-2815)


Valentine’s, Saturday

For Western Violence and Brief Sensuality, the new disc by Cincinnati-based band Pearlene, is a nine-song run around the fringe of blues-based and psychedelic rock. And the band aren’t shy about their classic-rock touchstones: Album opener “Hosannah” recalls Exile-era Stones; “We All Get Off” is a husky, Zeppelin-esque stomp; and “Watch the Way” slinks along with the menace of the classic Crazy Horse lineup. The record was produced by former Afghan Whig John Curley, and sounds like a band teetering on total abandon—which is just how we like our blues-based and psychedelic rock. Check out Pearlene this Saturday at Valentine’s, with Ashley Pond and 1/2 Step Down. (June 23, 9 PM, $5, 17 New Scotland Ave., Albany, 432-6572)

The Evens

The Evens

Albany Public Library (Howe Branch), Wednesday

A true pioneer of DIY rock makes an appearance in Albany this Wednesday, and with all the marquee pop music going on in and around the Capital Region that night (read on), it would be all too easy to let this one pass. Trust us: You shouldn’t. The Evens are the current project from Minor Threat and (more importantly) Fugazi vocalist-guitarist Ian MacKaye. (If you have to ask us why Fugazi are more important, you’ve never actually listened to Minor Threat.) A duo, with Amy Farina on drums and vocals, the Evens’ is a rather intimate take on rock music—their whole gig is based on the collaboration between the two players and their voices, and the results are poppier and more direct than anything MacKaye’s ever put his hands on. Grand Street Community Arts present the Evens this Wednesday at the Howe Library. As ever with MacKaye, tickets are a meager five bucks. (June 27, 8:30 PM, $5, 103 Schuyler St., Albany,


Pines Theater, Wednesday

A true pioneer of mope rock makes an appearance in Western Massachusetts this Wednesday. The one and only Steven Patrick Morrissey will take the Pines Theater stage in Northampton’s bucolic Look Park. It should be a very pretty show: The setting is pretty, Morrissey’s pretty (albeit not like he was in his younger, more Puritan days, but he is pushing 50 after all), and the audience is likely to be one of the prettiest in recent memory. Those who didn’t catch his last record, the Tony Visconti-produced Ringleader of the Tormentors, are doing themselves a disservice, as it was not only the most rocking record of his solo career but one of his very best. No worries, though: The Moz is also known to drop a few songs by his old band into the live show. Kristeen Young opens Wednesday’s show. (June 27, 7 PM, $47.50, Look Park, 300 N. Main St., Florence, Mass., 413-586-8686)

Ted Nugent

Northern lights, Wednesday

A true pioneer of poontang rock makes an appearance in Clifton Park this Wednesday. With guitar in one hand, crossbow in the other, the Raving Right-Wing Lunatic—er, the Motor City Madman—is still going strong as he nears 60, and we are, fittingly, still very afraid of what he might do to our daughters . . . or our pets, for that matter. He has no new album to promote, so it can be expected that the Nuge will dig deep into his extensive catalog of songs about pussy for Wednesday’s show. This pleases us, for Ted Nugent is, by our research, the only artist to have not one, but two singles with the word “wang” in their titles. For that, we applaud him. Bravo, Theodore. Bra-vo. (June 27, 7 PM, $28, 1208 Route 146, Clifton Park, 371-0012)

Also Noted

Tonight (Thursday), tattooed neofolksters the Duhks bring their Juno-award winning sound to the WAMC Performing Arts Studio (8 PM, $18, 465-5233 ext. 4). . . . Rising reggae star Collie Buddz, whose single “Come Around” is sure to be the weed- smoking anthem of the summer, drops in for a live set at Nick’s Sneaky Pete’s tomorrow (Friday, midnight, call for price, 489-0000). . . . Burning Human, featuring Shadows Fall drummer Jason Bittner plus members of Stigmata, will roar into Northern Lights on Friday; also on the bill are Last Call, Held Under, and Tentacles (7:30 PM, $12, 371-0012). . . . Roots revivalist Jeremy Wallace and his trio are at Club Helsinki in Great Barrington, Mass., on Friday (9 PM, $12, 413-528-3394). . . . This Saturday, the Guilderland Performing Arts Center at Tawasentha Park hosts Crash the Park 2007, a free, daylong music event featuring local favorites Starcode and Acoustic Trauma among others (11 AM, free, 456-3150). . . . The inimitable Mark Mulcahy and his band are at MASS MoCA on Saturday (8 PM, $18, 413-662-2111). . . . The Pines Theater in Florence, Mass. (near Northampton) has a busy week, with Wilco and Low on Sunday (7 PM, $36.50, 413-586-8686) and Bob Dylan on Tuesday (7 PM, $70-$85, 413-586-8686). . . . The Skidmore Jazz Institute’s summer season kicks off Tuesday with a concert by the James Moody Quartet at the Bernhard Theater (8 PM, free, 580-5595). . . . Finally, in case none of the myriad other Wednesday events have piqued your interest, the Doobie Brothers (or some reasonable facsimile thereof) play Proctor’s Theatre on Wednesday (8 PM, $34.75-$54.75, 346-6204).

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