Music » Critics' Picks

Lower Dens

9 p.m. Saturday, August 21. 2720 Cherokee, 2720 Cherokee Street.

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Lower Dens and its vocalist, Jana Hunter, record for Gnomonsong, the label cofounded by freak-folk patron saint Devendra Banhart. Yet Lower Dens' Twin-Hand Movement has little to do with fractured acoustics — and everything to do with spooky, nuanced noise sculptures. Hunter's resonant alto sounds like a coal-smudged Nico as it pushes forward the album's Krautrock stampeding ("Holy Water"), funereal indie folk ("Tea Lights") and Wall of Sound subversion (the reverb-coated "A Dog's Dick"). Movement recalls the cloudy agony of early Cure, Sonic Youth's distress and Cat Power's bedroom sadness — but its well-constructed songs prevent it from collapsing in self-defeat.

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