Stephen Malkmus and the Jicks 

Stephen Malkmus' post-Pavement career has found the lanky, indie poster boy communing more with his guitar than his notepad. Wringing alternately crisp and spritely riffs from his ax, Malkmus is happily tapping his inner Grateful Dead fan, writing songs that are less literate than shred-tastic. He wouldn't have been as free to mine this vein with sloppy, shambolic Pavement, an assemblage of amiable but not entirely proficient hands. But the Jicks — bassist Joanna Bolme, guitarist and keyboardist Mike Clark, and drummer Janet Weiss (formerly of Quasi and Sleater-Kinney) — are a tight, disciplined unit capable of running with the S-dog. For a set list, they've got quite a pool to fish from: 2001's Stephen Malkmus (dinky indie-pop), 2003's Pig Lib (flying the beardo prog flag), 2005's Face the Truth (all over the fucking map with no apologies made), and this year's Real Emotional Trash (dad-rock jamming). Don't let this show pass you by.

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