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Craig Colorusso and Jonah Sacks, Jason Martin
Arts Center of the Capital Region, thursday

Writing about programs staged by RPI’s Impulse Response can be a challenge. The artists participating in the series run rampant over generic expectations and render useless lots of convenient stock critical phrases, god bless their weird little souls. Mercifully, the press release letting us know about the upcoming performance of guitarist Craig Colorusso and cellist Jonah Sacks proved to be a bit of a cheat sheet: It’s an “evening of out sounds.” Not to put too fine a point on it, but there you go. The two are longtime collaborators working in an improvisatory mode; their output has ranged from straightforward “heavy” stuff to the “sound sculptural,” and between them their work has been featured in installations, gallery openings, theatrical productions, film screenings and a whole slew of bands. Jason Martin will work the “rusty reels of steel” in an opening set. (Sept. 4, 8 PM, $5, $3 students, 273-0552)

Kamikaze Hearts, First Hand
Caffe Lena, Saturday

Area darlings the Kamikaze Hearts have been working hard this year to stretch out beyond the region. Their self-titled record was recently met with solid support during a college-radio blitz, they cruised all over the Northeast to perform, and they landed on a CMJ compilation in May. But on Saturday, they’re playing their first area show as headliners since February, at Caffe Lena in Saratoga Springs. The Hearts’ brand of twang is of the barn-burning kind, with punk attitude adorned with gritty-yet-pretty harmonies and quirky songwriting. Joining them is First Hand, aka Trevor Healy, a Brooklyn-based Skidmore alum and guitar player with the Weigh Down. An accomplished musician with a solid background in folk and classical guitar, Healy’s a rocker at heart. With the Weigh Down he plays strong, melodic overgrown punk, but as First Hand, Healy creates music less straightforward and angular, creating layered soundscapes, woven by looping his guitar and incorporating found sound. But his loops are not what you think: First Hand’s guitar work is more along the lines of Bill Evans’ Conversations With Myself, and is used to constantly react to what he has just played, creating variations thereof. (Sept. 6, 8 PM; $10, 583-0022)


PATTI AUSTIN

Albany Riverfront Jazz Festival
ALbany Riverfront Park, Saturday

The second annual Albany River-front Jazz Festival will be held this Saturday in the new Amphitheater at Riverfront Park, on the Corning Preserve, and will feature both contemporary and traditional jazz. Among the highlights of this year’s festival surely will be vocalist Patti Austin, whose long recording history and still-scintillating voice converge on her newest album, For Ella, a tribute to the First Lady of Song. Balladeer Jimmy Scott, who was scheduled to appear at the event, fell ill recently and will not perform. Also performing will be smooth-jazz guitarist Steve Briody, vocalist and multi-instrumentalist Samantha Siva, and pianist and vocalist Peter Cincotti. Hopefully the weather will behave, so that a late-summer afternoon can be spent as freely as notes on the breeze, but if it rains, the Egg will be the substitute venue. (Sept. 6, noon, free, 434-2032, www.albanyevents.org)

Breaking Laces
The Larkin Lounge, Tuesday

Willem Hartong has gained a bit of high-profile media attention recently: The Brooklyn-based singer-songwriter turned up in The New York Times a few weeks back, busking in the subway. Now, there are lots of musicians doing just that, so what’s Hartong got that attracted the eye of the Times? Well, a romantic streak for one. Hartong’s been spending time in the stations trying to raise enough coin to buy his girlfriend an engagement ring (the most recent reports have him up to $519.18, if you’re curious). But while we’re sure you applaud his amorous ambition, we’re also sure you need more than that to get you out on a Tuesday. Good news: Hartong and his bandmates in Breaking Laces have more. The four-piece acoustic rock band combine catchy alternapop melodies (think Lemonheads) with the rootsy edge of Violent Femmes. And as they are quick to point out, as an acoustic act they’re good to go even if we lose power again. We’ll light some candles; it’ll be romantic. Who knows? Maybe Hartong will propose to someone. (Sept. 7, 8 PM, $5, 463-5225)

Ann Beretta
Valentine’s, Wednesday

After a three-year hiatus, Ann Beretta are touring in support of their upcoming album, Three Chord Revolution, and will bring a taste of the Richmond, Va., punk-rock scene to Albany with a show at Valentine’s Wednesday night. Since the release of their first 7-inch back in 1998, Burning Bridges, and their first full-length in ’99, their Lookout! Records debut To All Our Fallen Heroes, frontman Robbie Huddleston and the rest of the Ann Beretta ensemble have achieved a knack for blending the folksy Southern-rock roots of their home region with the aggressive sound of modern punk rock. Also in ’99, the group (then a quartet; they’re now a trio) released The Other Side of the Coin, an impressive experiment in acoustic punk, finding Huddleston and company successfully traveling the unplugged path long before the likes of many of current chart-topping pop-punk acts (Dashboard Confessional, Jimmy Eat World, etc.). After 2001’s New Union . . . Old Glory, a variety of side projects have conspired to keep the band out of the studio, but with a late-October date set for the new album’s release, Ann Beretta are planning to reacquaint themselves with old fans and win over some new ones. Joining Ann Beretta for this 16-and-over show will be Wilhelm Screams, Stand Up Citizen, and Much the Same. (Sept. 10, 7:30 PM, $10, 432-6572)

 also noted
Some of you may remember that from the same spring which sprung ’80s punkers the Extras surged the Crude and Joypop. That’s old history. But as the Extras have been back at it as of late, former Crude frontman, Jack Fris, and former Joypop alum, Tim Bentz and Lisa Holleran, have joined forces as Lucky Special Boy, performing with the Extras and Nikilee and Mass Chaos tonight (Thursday) at Valentine’s (9 PM, $5, 432-6572). . . . Songs of the British Isles will ring from the Old Songs Dutch Barn tomorrow (Friday), when John Roberts and Tony Barrand, performing English folk songs together for 35 years, play an Old Songs Concert (8 PM, $15, $5 for kids, 765-2815). . . . New Jersey-based Latin metal sensation Ill Niño will play Northern Lights Friday, with openers Spineshank, Skrape and 40 Below Summer (7:30 doors, $12, $10 advance, 371-0012). . . . A slew of area acts have signed up to perform the Tom Waits tribute show at Valentine’s on Saturday: Lowthief, Erin Harkes, CountrySoulHouse, MotherJudge, John Brodeur, Rob Skane, Michael Eck and Carl Smith are among them (8 PM, $5, 432-6572). . . . Melding Celtic music with African and Latin rhythms, Eileen Ivers & Immigrant Soul, featuring inspired violin virtuoso Ivers will perform at the Troy’s Revolution Hall on Saturday in celebration of their recent self-titled album (9 PM, $22, $20 advance, 273-2337). . . . The Flywheel, an Easthampton, Mass., performance space just a hop, skip and a jump from Northampton, hosts many cool artitsts (you can check out their schedule at www.flywheelarts.org), and over the next couple weeks they will hold a couple of kicking shows to benefit their cozy digs. On Sunday, punk-poet Ted Leo (of Ted Leo/Pharmacists fame), Brooklyn pop-country duo the Malarkies (who kicked ass at the recent Pop Barbecue at Valentine’s), and acoustic-guitar duo 2600 will play one such show; the following Friday, Sept. 13, Thurston Moore will play another (7:30 PM, $7, 413-527-9800). . . . Want the best vantage point to view this year’s harvest moon? Would you like some rousing rock, rockabilly and R&B provided by none other than Super 400, Rocky Velvet, Johnny Rabb, Larry Lewis and Solid Smoke, Blue Machine and Blue Hand Luke to provide accompaniment to your full-moon cruise? As luck would have it, the Full Moon Madness cruise aboard the Capt. JP sets sail on Tuesday, with those six bands to accompany your howling (board at 6 PM, 270-1901). . . . England’s hard-rocking Wishbone Ash, after many lineups (which have included Asia’s John Wetton and Uriah Heep’s Trevor Bolder), dozens of albums, and 30 years together, will perform at Revolution Hall on Wednesday (8 PM, $20, 273-2337).

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