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Critics have to bust out the hyphen and the slash to describe San Francisco’s Tin Hat Trio. The electric group plays world-jazz/classical music that mixes Old World melodies (French standards, Gypsy swing, Albanian folk, etc.) with New World exploration (jazz improvisation, modern classical, country blues). Violinist/violist Carla Kihlstedt, accordionist/pianist/pump organist/harmonica player Rob Burger, and guitarist Mark Orton (who also shines on banjo and dobro) take their hyphenated sounds seriously: Tin Hat’s members studied variously at Peabody and Juilliard before moving west in the mid-’90s. Helium, the trio’s second CD, is a beguiling blend of postmodern Americana and European folk music, with just the right pinch of improvisation: It sounds like Astor Piazzolla playing a Béla Bartók composition in a folk-blues style. Think that’s a confusing description? It’ll all become clear at 7:30 p.m. at the District of Columbia Jewish Community Center’s Goldman Theater, 1529 16th St. NW. $15. (202) 777-3254. (Christopher Porter)