SOUND CHECKS ‌ Notable Shows in the Next Week 

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AMERICANA | Tim Easton
Wed. June 21
The Village Tavern
$8

"I wanted to break out of the pattern that I'd made with the other records and be able to record when and where it felt the best," says Ohio-based singer/songwriter Tim Easton, speaking about his newly-released album, Ammunition (New West). "It's easier for me to make a living traveling by myself, so I wanted to make an album that was easy to perform solo for those times when I wasn't traveling with a band." That folkie, Dylan-esque vibe moves through the sound of his gritty new album. Recorded over the course of two years in Cleveland, Minneapolis, Alaska, and Joshua Tree, Ammunition is spare and honest — packed with poetic ramblings, notions, and stories that could apply to any region. Some songs feature only Easton and a guitar. On others, he's joined by multi-instrumentalist Doug Pettibone, drummer Don Heffington, and vocalist Lucinda Williams on harmony. Showtime at the Tavern is 9 p.m. —T. Ballard Lesemann WEDNESDAY


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ALT-POP | A.L.O.
w/ Burnin' Smyrnans
Thurs. June 22
Music Farm
$10

Funky pop/rock band A.L.O. (a.k.a. Animal Liberation Orchestra) formed in 2002 at the University of California Santa Barbara. Drummer David Brogan, keyboardist/singer/ukulele player Zach Gill, bassist/singer Steve Adams, and guitarist-singer Dan Lebowitz (all of whom were serious music students) initially assembled as a large-scale jazz-fusion ensemble with a full horn section. They gradually scaled things down to a trio with occasional guests. In 2005, they caught the ear of fellow Californian Jack Johnson and signed to his Brushfire Records label. The two acts spent two months on the road last summer, stopping in Charleston for a concert at The Joe along the way. A.L.O. recently embarked on their second major headlining tour across the U.S. in support of the clean, crisp, funk-filled new album, Fly Between Falls, featuring the obnoxiously groovy single, "Girl, I Wanna Lay You Down." —TBL THURSDAY


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ROCK | Cracker
w/ The Elms
Fri. June 23 / Sat. June 24
The Windjammer
$17 ($15 adv.)

David Lowery (pictured in the striped shirt) may be best known to youngsters these days as the guy with the nasally California accent from the popular alt-rock band Cracker. Older music fans remember him more for his work in Camper Van Beethoven, the violin-accented, '80s-era college radio darlings who combined jumpy psychedelic pop with borrowed bits of Jewish and traditional Eastern European folk music. Since forming in early 1992, Cracker veered down a decidedly straighter musical path. Since 1991, they've scored a pile of alternative rock hits ("Low," "Eurotrash Girl," and "Get Off This"). Lowery and longtime Cracker collaborator John Hickman (guitars and vocals) are currently on their longest North American tour in years in support of their new release Greenland (Cooking Vinyl). Drummer Frank Funaro and keyboardist Kenny Margolis played on most of the tracks. "This album is the most personal and is the most directly about my life, my own experiences, and those around me," Lowery says. "I found myself asking whether I wanted to continue to be a musician and keep writing songs. Those questions were answered by writing this record." —TBL FRIDAY/SATURDAY


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REGGAE/GROOVE | Dubconscious
"Reggae Nights"
Sat. June 24
James Island County Park
$6

Presented by the Charleston Co. Parks, the "Reggae Nights" series continues this week out at the James Island County Park. Athens, Ga.-based electro-groove/reggae ensemble Dubconscious performs on Sat. June 24. Dubconscious — guitarists James Keane and Adrian Zelski, bassist Solomon Wright, percussionist Scott Pridgen, and keyboardist Jerry Hendelberg —play a groove-heavy, psychedelic mix of reggae, dub, rock, and funk styles. Their latest album, The American Dream, is a 17-track collection of electronic sounds, soulful tunes, and funk rhythms. Rezolushun and The Movement are scheduled for "Reggae Nights" shows in July and August. Children 12 and under are free. Gates open at 7:30 p.m. and the music begins at 8:30 p.m. Check www.dubconscious.com or www.ccprc.com for more info. —TBL SATURDAY



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