Music » Critics' Picks

Steel Train

6:30 p.m. Saturday, June 26. The Firebird, 2706 Olive Street.

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To say that New Jersey quintet Steel Train has come a long way from its early days is a massive understatement. Originally, the group specialized in rather bland coffeehouse-rock and recorded for the largely pop-punk label Drive-Thru Records. But the band has undergone a remarkable transformation in recent years: It now draws influence from fellow Garden State resident Bruce Springsteen and has morphed into a sort of mini-Arcade Fire. Steel Train's new, self-titled (and self-released) album is its best yet and has a companion disc with each one of the album's songs being covered by notable females, ranging from Tegan and Sara to Amanda Palmer to actress Alia Shawkat.

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