JP is Welsh singer-songwriter JP Jones, who once had a band called Grace. The Fairground Boys are friends of his. Chrissie is longtime, iconic leader of the Pretenders Chrissie Hynde, whose dusky vibrato is one of rock's great voices. The pair's drunken meeting at a London bar led to a musical and romantic partnership, the latter doomed by Hynde's nearly three-decade seniority over Jones. But the impossible relationship was also prime fodder for the songs that appear on their collaborative album, Fidelity!, the title a sly commentary on both their love affair and the place they wrote the material (Fidel Castro's Cuba). Adeptly exploiting the bittersweet tension in their amorous conundrum, Hynde and Jones create music that squirms and twists and sizzles with frustrated passion, the band appropriately ragged and intrepid as poignancy translates into full-kilter rock 'n' roll ("If You Let Me") and ballads riddled with regret. Hardly mournful, there are streaks of humor and moments of exquisitely melodic pop-rock ("Australia," with its remarkably effervescent pronunciation of the title). Jones's raspy voice is a fine match for Hynde, who has rarely sounded better (which is saying a lot), and her blend of grit and vulnerability on a single line—"Meanwhile, I'll be the only one"—may be among her finest ever. As they dissect and negotiate their ties throughout Fidelity!, Hynde and Jones join a select club of couples who memorably did the same on record, notably including George Jones and Tammy Wynette, and Richard and Linda Thompson. Opening will be Amy Correia, a Massachusetts native who suggests a female John Hiatt, writing smart, edgy, story-songs with particular points on her latest, You Go Your Way. Also like Hiatt, she taps blues, gospel, and other Americana roots while harboring an inclination to rock out. 18+.
Mon., Oct. 11, 7:30 p.m., 2010