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Maudlin, noisy, and atmospheric, Last Tide is invested as much in mid-’80s navel-gazing as late-’80s shoegaze. I’m not sure if that makes the young D.C. four-piece kneegaze or thighgaze, but I do know that the group’s new EP, The Broken Places, is an engrossing study in dichotomies—the five songs are vociferous yet ebullient, miserable yet poppy, weather-worn yet insistent. The vocals, too, are diametric opposites: Keyboardist Libby Dorot’s are delicate, even ethereal—a perfect foil to guitarist Nate Frey’s large, searching baritone. Drummer Misha Alexander and bassist Rob Miller complete the group, and City Paper‘s own Justin Moyer (aka Edie Sedgwick) engineered the recording.

Last Tide drops the EP in physical form in October, but for now, you can hear the whole thing on the group’s MySpace (although the version of “A Traitor In My Mind” is actually a shortened “single edit,” for those keeping score at home). And you can listen to the band live this weekend on WMUC‘s Third Rail Radio program, Sunday at 6 p.m. at www.wmucradio.com (or 88.1 on your FM dial).

The group’s EP release show is Oct. 26 at the Black Cat Backstage with Austin’s Ringo Deathstarr and D.C.’s The State Department. Doors open at 9 p.m.