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During his time with the Jayhawks, Mark Olson was onehalf of a singing/songwriting team that produced two of alternative country’s essential recordings: one obscure (Blue Earth), the other less so (Hollywood Town Hall). He played the role of wide-eyed narrator, while partner Gary Louris provided exuberant soundscapes with both guitar and voice. When Olson left the band, it seemed that the Jayhawks had lost enough of their core to call it a career. But with Louris becoming the de facto frontman, the band has refined its most experimental urges and redefined itself on Sound of Lies. Subtle in an arena lush with exotic echoes and images of loss that give way to joy, Lies registers the sound of a band feasting on life and never getting bloated. That the band is behaving more like the Beatles than the Burrito Brothers, and still conjuring an exquisite American landscape, is evidence enough that the ‘Hawks will continue to transcend both turmoil and time. And if there’s a more tasteful singer/guitarist package in rock than Louris, I’d love to hear him. Like-minded Mississippi roots trio Blue Mountain opens at 7:30 p.m. at the 9:30 Club, 815 V St. NW. $12. (202) 393-0930. (Brett Anderson)