Cincinnati's Wussy play loud and lonesome indie rock, sometimes out of tune or time, but with a level of conviction that makes things sound more let-loose than tossed-off. The four-piece is co-led by Lisa Walker and Chuck Cleaver, the latter once of Ass Ponys, the very fine, largely neglected purveyors of near-Southern rock. On last year's Wussy, Walker sings with an almost formal grace befitting her careful lyrics, while Cleaver still snarls and drawls, except, as on "Magic Words," when he sings a bit like Michael Stipe singing a bit like Nico. That chimey song sounds happy but isn't; the rest of the album sounds sad but is closer to despairing, though it's an often ingenious and funny kind of despair, full of lines that linger like dirty snow. "We hung around for better days and unimpressive light displays," goes one of Walker's; another, from Cleaver: "Tramping through the brambles till our pants were all torn/Searching for a paper bag of mildewy porn." With Gospel Gossip, Zoo Animal, and Maudlin.
Sat., March 27, 9:30 p.m., 2010