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13

SUNDAY

After 18 years, 20-some albums, and at least three bassists, Tatsuya Yoshida’s duo Ruins is just about as consistent as the rising sun. Throughout its career, the Japanese band—which takes its name from a song by communist jazz-rockers Henry Cow—has pursued a singular (and particularly low-stakes) middle ground between the ’70s obscuro-prog of France’s Magma and the ’70s obscuro-prog of Italy’s Area. Confused? Not interested? That’s OK, because Yoshida doesn’t seem to care. The vocalist/drummer and whatever bassist he’s got on board at any given time keep churning out the same high-quality spaz: heavy on stops and starts, heavy on made-up language, light on repetition. And just when it seems as if Yoshida’s concept might be running out of steam (see 2000’s angular-to-a-fault Pallaschtom), he goes and makes one of the best records of his career (see 2002’s groovy, melodic Tzomborgha). The Ruins play with Comets on Fire and Giddy Motors at 9 p.m. at the Velvet Lounge, 915 U St. NW. $6. (202) 462-3213. (Brent Burton)