SUNDAY

Jim Putnam must have gotten tired of looking at his feet. Before forming Radar Bros., Putnam was a shoegazer, part of the late-’80s/early ’90s movement of spacey post-punk bands whose members hid their downturned faces behind long bangs and walls of psychedelic guitar feedback. Most shoegazers were British, with many of the best of them on London’s Creation label. Medicine—some of whose records came out on Creation in Britain—and Maids of Gravity were among the few American bands truly worthy of the title. Putnam was in both. At first, Radar Bros. seems totally disconnected from Putnam’s past. The band embraces a spare, unaffected sound. Putnam, it seems, has returned to simplicity. This is not without precedent: Syd Barrett also left a psychedelic guitar band, Pink Floyd (perhaps the definitive space-rock outfit), throwing it all away to pursue a quirky solo career before vanishing altogether. He has since become the patron saint of all rockers wishing to follow their own personal muses into the countryside. Radar Bros. draws from both of these mentors (and adds a touch of Skip Spence), carrying on a laid-back post-punk tradition that flows through Opal—formed by refugees from two punk-psych bands, the Dream Syndicate and the Rain Parade—and its offshoot, Mazzy Star, to more recent groups like Bedhead, Wheat, and the Red House Painters. At 10 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 5, at the Metro Cafe, 1522 14th St. NW. $7. (202) 518-7900. (Mark W. Sullivan)