Friday, June 9

Tad Dreis, Shakori Hills Moonlight Music & Dance

Like a stateside Ben Lee who has swapped irritating idealism for more plausible pragmatism and a heightened sense of storytelling, Chapel Hill’s Tad Dreis bases his guy-with-guitar presentation more on pop melodics than folk didactics. He’s got a careful eye for detail and a witty, charming disposition, his musings about using too much soap while cleaning his new lover’s apartment reading like a ready-made score for a forthcoming romantic comedy. 7:30 p.m. –GC

Jeff Hart & the Ruins, Bynum General Store

“Second-guessing every last scenario/ and the only lights you see are on the radio/ fading in and out of stereo.” It’s been over 10 years since that triplet first made contact, but it remains one of my favorite local songwriter moments. The author is the well-traveled Jeff Hart who, when fronting the Ruins, wears his love for Ray Davies and Tom Petty on his sleeve and, usually, his love for the Orioles on his head. $3-7 donation/7:30 p.m. –RC

Bio Ritmo, Pencilgrass, The Pour House

The adage for local and live music still holds–if, like the tree in the forest, no one is there to hear it, well, it might as well not exist. Bio Ritmo are our own great makers of mid-section-moving salsa because they succeed in expressing spirit and vitality, and in that communicative process, people hear a calling–the drums in the distance, beckoning. $8-10/10 p.m. –CT

Saturday, June 10

Starlight Mints, Dios Malos, The Octopus Project, Cat’s Cradle

If you’re in this for Starlight Mints (huge pop cacophony from Norman, Okla.) or Dios Malos (skull-baked sundazers from Hawthorne, Calif.), please arrive early: The Octopus Project walked away with The Austin Chronicle‘s Best New Local Band award at this year’s SXSW, and few have deserved it more. The four-piece’s (four people … eight arms … octopus … see what they did there?) instrumental antics and clever compositions make them one of the most exciting, most fun bands to watch in America. Theremins and programmed double drumming? Yip! $8-10/9 p.m. –GC

Hank Sinatra and the Vibekillers, The Pour House

With an enticing mix of hardcore, early ’70s garage rock, and honky-tonk, Hank Sinatra brings the country music scene to an entirely different level. If anything, this music is definitely not your typical honky-tonk rag. It’s unpolished and rough around the edges, with a sound that’s full of grit and gusto. $6/10 p.m. —KJ

Experimental Instrumental Night, Kings

“New” music is often not wholly new. In this locals-only improv and minimalism think tank, decades-old tenets of tone take hold. Chuck Johnson, Crowmeat Bob and Chris Eubank’s interplay slams free jazz and modern comp; Phon go off-scale in effects-drenched excess. It’s still rare that we see pieces in large ensemble format, but The Hem of His Garment members Jenks Miller and Indy music editor Grayson Currin assembled over a dozen players, including the aforementioned plus members of DeYarmond Edison and more, for a sympho-drone. Get free at 10 p.m. 10 p.m. –CT

The Sybaritic Gentlemen of Leisure, The Cartridge Family, Slim’s

In a 2005 interview with N.C. State’s Technician, Joshua Starmer defined the span between his two bands, Oedipus Dick and The Sybaritic Gentlemen of Leisure: “The Sybaritic Gentlemen drink wine on stage. Oedipus Dick drinks 40s.” The Gentlemen split this bill with The Cartridge Family, a raucous rock band that sings alternately about partying and about being too tired to party, swigging suds all the while. This is also an art reception for Family’s bassist C.J. Irwin, whose work will hang in Slim’s through June. Free/10 p.m.–GC

New Town Drunks, Spider Bags, Shannon O’Connnor, Local 506

The New Town Drunks write country songs with a Latin predilection, an intoxicating swill for their friends, the commiserating drunkards. These theater-of-the-absurdly intoxicated teasers stipulate that sobriety is cheaper (but not safer) than sanity and losing your keys is safer than losing your cool. The band is having a baby (Surgeon General’s warning, anyone?) and taking a break until a New Year’s Eve return to fall-over form. Shannon O’Connor and Spider Bags share the bill for this O.C. hullabaloo. $6/10 p.m. –GC

Tuesday, June 13

Heads Down Thumbs Up, Mortar & Pestle, Local 506

Better than their handful of shows would indicate, Chapel Hill instrumental quartet Heads Down Thumbs Up mines the post-rock eclipses and catharses of inspirations like Mono and Explosions in the Sky, employing twinkling guitars over moonlit soundscapes, casting it all in a fever-pitch glow without Mono’s involved distensions or Explosions’ conscious scripts. Quirky co-ed Greensboro quartet Mortar & Pestle plays affable but aloof indie pop, Doug Martsch’s arrangement ambition sans guitar gusto.$7/10 p.m. –GC

Wednesday, June 14

Spader, Future Islands, Dynasty Electric, Nightlight

Raleigh’s Spader, Greenville’s Future Islands and Brooklyn’s Dynasty Electric all like to dance. But their moves come in three permutations: Pox World’s Spader rely on guitars and slinky bass to get the hips swaying, Future Islands (which is basically the late Art Lord and a couple of his Self Portraits) ride the new wave and ooze booty-wiggle charisma, while Dynasty Electric have the whole being-from-New-York thing going for them. $5/10 p.m. –RM