Pavement has made an awful lot of records since the late 80s, so chances are this San Francisco quartet's elegantly sluggish rhythms and intricate intertwining guitars--not to mention the lazy drawl of singers Ian Sefchick and Sharky Laguana--won't exactly shake up your world. But Creeper Lagoon's music is smoother and slicker than their stylistic progenitors', and their efficient way with a pop hook sets them a good distance apart from the several dozen other wannabes currently clogging up the seven-inch bins. On their recent debut album, I Become Small and Go (on the Dust Brothers' Nickelbag label), some gingerly inserted hip-hop beats tangle nicely with David Kostiner's workmanlike drumming, while samples of everything from ethereal Bulgarian folk melodies to New Zealand indie-rock icon Peter Jefferies act as mild spices to the main ingredient--the guitars, of course. Lyrics are a definite weak point--where Pavement's crypticisms usually reveal their own twisted logic and are crammed with compelling images, Creeper Lagoon's spiels are too often oblique meditations on why Sefchick or Laguana can't get no satisfaction. But if you're really jonesin' for this kind of stuff, overall you'll get a pretty good fix here. Verbow headlines. Friday, 10 PM, Schubas, 3159 N. Southport; 773-525-2508. PETER MARGASAK
Art accompanying story in printed newspaper (not available in this archive): photo by Peter Ellenby.