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Recommended Music Shows this Week

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LATIN GROOVE | The SPAM Allstars
w/ DJ Le Spam
Wed. July 18
The Pour House
$8, $6 (adv.)

Although Spam helped our troops hold off the Nazis during the cold winters of World War II, the generations since "the greatest" have downgraded the potted meat product to the bottom of the meat ladder. "Spam is the Paul Giamatti or John C. Reilly of the culinary world, an everyman food that lacks the charisma or looks of a leading ingredient, but consistently makes all other ingredients taste better," stated a recent NPR story celebrating Spam's 70th anniversary. A far cry from their canned compatriot, the Spam Allstars are certainly a main course. The seven-piece band from Miami is headed by DJ Le Spam, with a backing group that includes guitars, saxes, timbales, trombone, conch shells, and congas. The sound is somewhere between Afrobeat and Latin flair — they call it an "electronic descarga." It's exploratory, highly danceable, and good enough to earn them a Latin Grammy nod and collaborations with saxophonist Pee Wee Ellis and Phish keyboardist Page McConnell. Japanese music magazines Cazi Cazi and Musee call them "not just only happy but very spicy," and "Latin mix cake which applied deep dub whip cream on black music luna park ground. Don't worry about heartburn — DJ Le Spam's scratch is very clever and so many funny flavors exist in all tracks." Visit www.spamallstars.com for a listen. —Stratton Lawrence WEDNESDAY

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ALT-ROCK | Augustana
w/ O.A.R.
Fri. July 20
Family Circle Magazine Stadium
$29.50

A little over a year ago, Illinois-based Augustana had been on the road in support of their major-label debut All the Stars and Boulevards, but the disc was not getting the recognition, the sales, or the fans it deserved. "There was a period of time where we were definitely frustrated," recalls bassist Jared Palomar. "Actually, last April was kind of the high point of that, and we were like, 'We need to change something.' So we changed our management and we had a falling out with our guitar player. But those two changes have been some of the best decisions we've made in our lives. It was very difficult, but it was very good in the end." Augustana catered to the emo and punk scenes by taking part in tours with Panic! At the Disco and Cartel, but they also hit the mainstream pop-rock set by opening up for Snow Patrol, The Fray, and Switchfoot. Palomar, frontman Dan Layus, guitarist Chris Sachtleben, pianist John Fredericks, and drummer Justin South are ready to tackle the sophomore album. Tickets are $29.50 (all ages). Doors open at 7 p.m. See www.familycirclecup.com and www.augustanamusic.com for more. —Leah Weinberg FRIDAY

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METAL/HARDCORE | Genghis Tron
w/ Ed Gein, Gaza, Maruta
Fri. July 20
Cumberland's
$8, $6 (adv.)

Mookie Singerman, Hamilton Jordan, Michael Sochynsky: three guys, some guitars, keyboards, and a computer. Loud, gruff, and rough, Philadelphia-based "rock extremists" Genghins Tron (sic) recently embarked on an Eastern U.S. tour with Ed Gein, Gaza, and other like-minded guests for a trip that will include performances at "Dudefest" in Indiana and the "Gorefest" in Michigan. They're out in support of a limited, industrial-strength, tour-only CD entitled Triple Black Diamond, a teaser to their forthcoming Relapse Records debut. Call it screamo, call it industrial-metal, call it cacophonous noize ... it's aggressive as fuck. See www.genghistron.com for more. —T. Ballard Lesemann FRIDAY

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POP-ROCK | Gringo Star
w/ The Fire Apes
Sat. July 21
The Map Room
$5

One of the rising stars of the Atlanta indie-rock scene, twangy psyche-pop quartet Gringo Star (previously known as A Fir-Ju Well) finally stroll into town in support of a new, self-released, self-titled EP. "The only thing that's changed is we don't have to repeat ourselves when someone asks about our name," says singer/guitarist Nicholas Furgiuele. The frontman swaps guitar, keys, and bass duties with younger brother Peter Furgiuele, with support from a rhythm section comprised of Matt McCalvin and Peter DeLorenzo. Their melodic twang resembles the refined, sophisticated songwriting of the vintage Paisley Underground movement in L.A., early-era Byrds, The Waterboys, and R.E.M.'s first releases. Dapper power-pop quartet The Fire Apes (a local favorite) share the bill. Visit www.myspace.com/thegringostars and www.thefireapes.com for more. —TBL SATURDAY

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