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Deadbeat Beat, Graham Hunt, Julian Lynch (free)

  • Mickey's Tavern 1524 Williamson Street Madison, WI, 53703 United States (map)

Artists from Madison and Detroit make for a catchy but unconventional bill. Info

Julian Lynch. Photo by Ebru Yildiz.

Julian Lynch. Photo by Ebru Yildiz.

The three acts playing this show each let elements of pop bleed radiantly into other corners of music, with a refreshing lack of interest in genre barriers. This doesn't mean they sound all that much alike, but somehow the combination of Madison's Graham Hunt and Julian Lynch with Detroit's Deadbeat Beat makes perfect sense. Hunt, who recently relocated here from Milwaukee, has played in bands including the standout psych-rock outfit Sundial Mottos, and will have a full band here to showcase a growing body of solo material. Hunt's 2019 solo album Leaving Silver City combines the punch of a live band with the scratchy charms of a bedroom-pop record. The second and third tracks, "Every Person" and "Kendall's Gonna Love It," capably pull the listener right across that spectrum, and "Small Town" pushes things into joyously chaotic territory. Whatever approach Hunt and collaborators are taking on a given track, there's plenty of warmth and good-natured jangle to hold it together. "Change Their Mind," a single released a few months after the album, pairs a sharp hook with easygoing swagger.

Lynch released his fifth album, Rat's Spit, earlier this year, a decade after he started putting out works of comforting but enigmatic solo music. His self-produced albums have always felt like worlds in miniature, arranging guitar, clarinet, warbly synths, and understated vocals into hooks at peace with their aqueous, ethereal surroundings. Rat's Spit brings Lynch's vocals a little closer to the front of the mix, and places a much more overt emphasis on letting him shine as a guitarist. The guitar solos on "Meridian" and "Hexagonal Field" only deepen the songs' tender and ruminative qualities, wah-ing and bending with an overdriven ache. Lynch's live sets tend to change up a lot from one to the next, but recent ones have found him improvising with a combination of synths and electric guitar. Deadbeat Beat plays here behind a new album, How Far, which combines punk-rock grit with unabashedly sunny pop songwriting. —Scott Gordon

Earlier Event: August 30
Suburbia (free)
Later Event: August 31
Hex House, OUT, Regal Machines