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wednesday

The Northwestern climate played a prominent role in, as marketers would say, the “look and feel” of the grunge era (torn flannel, copious hair, and sturdy boots to guard against a damp chill), but never has the region’s music sounded so much like rain. Though computers have gotten smaller, they’ve somehow managed to muscle out traditional rhythm sections with thwacks and whoop-dings that sound like so many droplets in a clogged gutter. The latest NorPac’ers to decide they didn’t need their bassist, after all, are Portland, Ore.’s, Stars of Track and Field. Providing a familiar backdrop for Kevin Calaba’s Ben Gibbard–esque hushed falsetto, the trio’s electronic flourishes do occasionally give way to guitar-driven wanking—which should be lame but actually elevates the band’s full-length debut, Centuries Before Love and War, above the Give Up rip-off it could’ve been. Still, keep your hood on when Stars of Track and Field perform with the Twilight Singers and Jeff Klein at 8 p.m. at the Black Cat, 1811 14th St. NW. $15. (202) 667-7960. (Anne Marson)

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