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Los Angeles’ Nico Vega has no bass player, so occasional comparisons to the White Stripes and Yeah Yeah Yeahs are to be expected. But this loud, prickly trio is really going for high trash, Sunset Strip style—hence the big, bluesy, hard-rock riffs; the propulsive thunder-clap rhythms; and the music video for “Bang Bang,” which basically reimagines Da Vinci’s “Last Supper” via Cindy Sherman, David LaChapelle, and Andrew W.K. Add to that chemistry Aja Volkman, a deep-voiced frontwoman with a large, volatile stage presence, who bears a physical resemblance to the Pretenders’ Chrissie Hynde. Like Hynde, Volkman is a hard rocker with a knack for pop melodies. So when she inevitably attempts an anthem as catchy and sexy as “Brass in Pocket,” watch out.
NICO VEGA PERFORMS WITH INWARD EYE AND NEON TREES AT 8:30 P.M. AT THE RED AND THE BLACK, 1212 H ST. NE. $10. (202) 399-3201.