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KIMBALL ROESER EFFECT 8/11, EMPTY BOTTLE Jim Kimball and Ed Roeser weren't the stars of their most successful bands--Kimball has drummed for the Laughing Hyenas, Mule, and the Jesus Lizard, and Roeser played guitar in Urge Overkill--so their new outfit is blessed with a modicum of freedom from the burden of audience expectations. (For contrast, see the sad spectacle of Nash Kato hoping to evoke nostalgia for something that was sort of a camp act to begin with...it's like Sha Na Na playing Woodstock '94.) That said, the chosen sound of the Kimball Roeser Effect probably won't surprise anyone: a couple months ago, in a low-fanfare Metro gig opening for Local H, they played a set of sweaty, riffy, crunchy no-frills boy rock--a little like early, harder Urge but with Lizardesque timing. The crowd, mostly too young to remember their past accomplishments, seemed impressed. This will be the band's first show with bassist Chris Linster. BROTHER 8/12, ABBEY PUB Australian brothers Angus and Hamish Richardson have spent ten years on the Sydney pub scene honing a blustery, harmonious radio pop that's distinguished occasionally by an eerie bagpipe-and-didgeridoo drone and Dave Allen's fierce drumming. But on their sixth CD, Your Backyard, they apply the icing way too sparingly to an otherwise flavorless cake. STEVE COLE 8/12, SKYLINE STAGE Smooth jazz is often (and rightly) maligned for its tepid, watery take on a once vital music, but it's faithful to jazz tradition in at least one way: it maintains a strong connection to the popular R & B of its time. On his new Between Us (Atlantic), a concept album of sorts about relationships, saxophonist Steve Cole flattens out TLC's "Waterfalls," and on the original "Together Again," guest vocalist Tim "TJ" Jackson delivers a performance that's almost soulful by virtue of defying the smooth-jazz pillars of "taste" and "understatement." "So Into You" actually gets a groove on, in that spice-up-your-marriage-by-learning-to-strip-from-videotapes kind of way. GENRAL PATTON & HIS PRIVATES 8/12, GALLERY CABARET Property values are going to plunge next Saturday around Oakley and Armitage: in celebration of Big Bully, the new CD from these decidedly downscale local rockers, Gallery Cabaret is hosting a 10-hour, 15-band block party. Bandleader Jim "Genral" Patton is a songwriter of the Nigel Tufnel school, menacingly intoning lines like "I would like a job at Dunkin' Donuts / I could eat free donuts with lots of coffee" over heavy-metal riffage and then harmonizing sweetly with his Privates on the intro to "40," a song about beer for breakfast. He details his tiny universe with wit and participatory affection that's so antiliterary it's literary--stoopid, but not stupid. WATERWORKS 8/15, SCHUBAS This local quartet's debut, Dragonfly, is intended to examine "human nature's proximity to love" and "discover the music inherent in poetry." Their delicate bedroom pop, with its tinkling electric piano, breathy singing, and circumlocutory lyrics, seems aimed at that growing demographic to which a home recording studio is as natural a seduction environment as a hot-tub suite. THE ALL RECTANGLE 8/16, EMPTY BOTTLE This highly educated and credentialed collection of youngish players includes composer Mark Kirschenmann, whose electronically enhanced trumpeting was a key ingredient in the glam-prog band Maschina; electronicist Bradley Kaliula Bowden, who's played tuba with the National Symphony Orchestra; Maschina bassist Alana Rocklin; and percussionist Derek Crawford, who builds drums for members of the CSO. Their "demo"--which has a title, "Ke Ala Mano," and is polished enough to release, if you ask me--ranges from caffeinated and sometimes power-chorded fusion to trippy spacescapes in which Kirschenmann's trumpet resonates as if from across a canyon to dublike last calls at some space-age-bachelor lounge. They perform on a double bill with Fareed Haque, who contributes guitar to one track on the disc and will repeat the favor live. SEVEN NATIONS 8/17, ABBEY PUB Seven Nations, another Celtic rock band with a network of fans that rallies round its indie releases and festival appearances, has been called "the Dave Matthews Band with bagpipes," and probably by someone who meant it as a compliment. My personal bias is that nearly anything can be improved by the judicious application of bagpipes (see AC/DC's "It's a Long Way to the Top"), but judicious isn't the adjective I'd use here. Nobody in Celtic rock beats the family act Leahy for sentimental bombast, but on their latest, The Factory, these guys come close. --Monica Kendrick

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