Emerging from the wreckage of the emo band Noise Ratchet, the San Diego quintet Delta Spirit headed rootsward, picking up few specifics of the Mississippi Delta per se, but conjuring a ragged fervor that's equal parts folkie-protest, punk, inebriated English music hall, melodic Brit-pop, and vintage SoCal rock. As such, Delta Spirit's August debut, Ode to Sunshine, initially evokes mid-period Kinks, including Ray Davies-like musings on acoustic-driven tunes like "Tomorrow Goes Away" and "Trashcan," with twisted piano tinkling. The anthemic "People C'mon" has a Kinks-sized sing-along chorus, but by this time Matt Vasquez has stirred his voice into a raspy howl. Elsewhere there are echoes of the Waterboys, while the gorgeous "Strange Vine" fuses soulful Vasquez vocals with jangly guitar out of Bakersfield via Dick Dale and Roger McGuinn. These guys are reputedly killers live, and moreover seem to have found a vital avant-roots pulse that could take them far. Opening will be Other Lives, an Oklahoma quintet whose debut is due in April, reportedly blending folk and Brit prog rock. 18+.
Fri., Feb. 13, 9 p.m., 2009
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