Live Music: Daryl Hance; The Salt Flats; Black Pistol Fire; Matadero

Great live music to check out this week

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DARK ROCK | Matadero
w/ Clint4 and Punks&Snakes
Mon. Aug. 11
9 p.m.
$5
Royal American

Matadero, Spanish for slaughterhouse, is a rock band without six-string guitars. Bassist George Baerreis, pianist Sam Sfirri, drummer Ron Wiltrout, and lead vocalist Lindsay Holler hold it down just fine, though. The combination of Holler’s soulful voice, fuzz bass, and churchbell chimes creates a rich, dark, and dense experimental sound. “Matadero is definitely heavy in terms of the sound and the song themes,” Holler explains. “One of the things I really like about this band is that when we get together for a rehearsal, we really tend to workshop each song — break it apart and find out where each instrument fits best.” Unfortunately, these guys seldom get to make their magic together since Sfirri has been in school in Montreal while the rest of the crew is based in Charleston. That’s why the Royal American show is extra special for them. “If Sam was in town regularly, this would definitely be a high priority project for all of us,” Holler says. “We’ve got such an excellent and unique chemistry that we all really love.” —Kelly Rae Smith MONDAY

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PSYCH BLUES | Daryl Hance
Wed. Aug. 13
9 p.m.
Free
Surf Bar

After leaving Southern rock jam band JJ Grey & Mofro in 2010, singer/songwriter/guitarist Daryl Hance went solo, creating his own funky, bluesy, rock ‘n’ roll sound. But there were no hard feelings between former bandmates. Grey told Hance to strike out on his own. Hance’s debut Hallowed Ground was released in 2011, and he says a second album Land of Trembling Earth will soon pick up right where the first one left off. Set to drop on Aug. 5, the new LP is all about self evolution. “The underlying current of the album is about freeing yourself and empowering yourself — or more on point, the process of, or the metamorphosis of it all, like from a caterpillar to a cocoon. I suppose the butterfly stage will be the third album,” says Hance. With inspiration from Jimi Hendrix, Led Zeppelin, The Rolling Stones, Nina Simone, and a more personal muse, his father, Hance has created a raw, Southern rock sound with a psychedelic twist. —Teddi Aaron NEXT WEDNESDAY

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ROCK ‘N’ ROLL | Black Pistol Fire
w/The Toadies
Sat. Aug 9
9 p.m.
$17/adv., $20/door
The Music Farm

After grinding it out for a few years and releasing two full-length records and an EP, Black Pistol Fire knew their next release was going to have to kick some serious ass. “The previous year had been a real struggle for us,” guitarist/vocalist Kevin McKeown says. “I wanted us to start making waves and for more people to hear the music, so Hush or Howl was a ‘put up or shut up’ record.” The Canadian duo does anything but shut up on Howl. Between the groovy rock ’n’ roll swagger of “Dimestore Heartthrob,” the gritty White Stripes-esque “Alabama Coldcock,” and the avalanche of sound that propels “Run Rabbit Run,” the album is filled with fire and verve to the nth degree. But there are also some pleasant surprises, like the banjo-led Appalachian jig “Your Turn to Cry” and the harmonica-heavy Americana ballad “Grease My Wheel.” Much of Howl’s content was written in 2012 after Shut Up, but the band wisely decided to hold off on making an album. “Taking our time was the right choice,” says McKeown. “I had been working on these songs off and on, but when I look back now, I can hear and see the underlining theme to the album.” And what theme is that? Rocking your socks off, of course.—Brian Palmer SATURDAY

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GEOLOGIC ROCK | The Salt Flats
w/ Lily Slay
Sat. Aug. 9
9 p.m.
$5
Tin Roof

Salt Flats songwriter and frontman Eli Truett dedicated himself to constructing and perfecting an emotional electro-acoustic EP and LP between 2010 to 2013, and a low budget meant long hours working with ProTools in his basement. “If you take music seriously, to want it to be such a major part of your life, you have to embrace all that entails,” says Truett. The band’s full-length record Testing oozes a soothing yet subtly off-balance feeling, like with the melancholic “Landspeed” and the ironically murky track, “Clear.” A rockier sound hides behind a mellow vox overlay, which stems from a soft-hearted place that sets Truett apart from typical rock-and-rollers of today. “I get annoyed with a trend I see in a lot of rock bands, especially the ones who are or want to seem harder-edged or more experimental, where they seem bent on alienating people, as if the audience has to prove themselves according to some arbitrary standard of cool in order to legitimately appreciate the music — or to criticize it for that matter.” He adds, “Art is about expression, which is ultimately about being human, and if someone isn’t being honest or is taking the easy way out, people can sense it. You can’t fake a certain depth of emotion.” The guys in Salt Flats count U2 and Nirvana among their inspirations, but they also draw from geography. Driving through the salt flats in Utah is what led the Athens, Ga-based guys to their band name. Truett says, “The Salt Flats thematically embody an endless horizon of possibilities, the mysteries and wonders of existence, and, as a result, an appropriately non-limiting moniker for the music I write and my overall goals.” —Kalyn Oyer SATURDAY

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