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14

tuesday

The realm of cabaret bluesiness can be dangerous territory for an indie-rock band. If a group can back up all the dark posturing with genuine swagger, then great—it can hang with Nick Cave in the decaying Berlin ballroom of its choice. But if it blows it, it’ll be crooning in a cutout bin with the Dead Science. Though Baltimore’s the Celebration may not exactly be setting prayers on fire with the likes of the Birthday Party, its recent self-titled album certainly packs enough heat to keep the cabaret-punk faithful warm. On songs such as “Holiday” and “Ancient Animals,” vocalist Katrina Ford turns her voice inside-out and upside-down, hollering like the Cocteau Twins’ Liz Fraser working out a Nina Simone cover. Meanwhile, multi-instrumentalist Sean Antanaitis and drummer David Bergander sidestep doom-and-gloom clichés in favor of an organ grinding atmosphere that comes easily unhinged. Crash the party when the Celebration performs with …And You Will Know Us by the Trail of Dead, the Blood Brothers, and Brothers and Sisters at 8:30 p.m. at the 9:30 Club, 815 V St. NW. $17. (202) 265-0930. (Aaron Leitko)