Hollows, Dirty Dancing, Runnies, Little Boy Jr. When: Sat., Jan. 21, 8 p.m. 2012
This local trio brings a part-sinister, part-forlorn vibe to its raw punk rock, and though singer and organist Mary McKane also makes relatively hooky, throwback psych-pop with Outer Minds, here her throaty, raspy soul defies any era-specific labels. On the Runnies' recent debut, You Can't Win (available only as a free download from Candy Dinner), the primitive throb of drummer Brett Swinney and reverb-drenched riffs of guitarist Russ Calderwood provide a kind of diffuse propulsion, but it's McKane's mighty howl—which balances melodic precision with larynx-shredding volume—and fat organ licks that really grab you. The production is definitely in the red, but the music's got more to offer than scrappy noise—there's a sure-handed songcraft thriving in that mess. —Peter Margasak Hollows headline; Dirty Dancing, Runnies, and Little Boy Jr. open.