Lovers Lane
Copernicus Center

Father’s day

| September 21, 2011

You can picture Neil Finn walking past son Liam’s bedroom and wondering, “Where did we go wrong?” The younger Finn, They Might Be Giants, and Peter Hook close our weekend preview.

Liam Finn‘s Crowded House-founding father peaks into his son’s rehearsal space, only to witness Liam sense a dropped note, leading to a tantrum of epic proportions, instruments everywhere, and everyone going home in mystified silence. That’s what the ending of “Roll Of The Eye,” on this year’s Fomo (Yep Roc) conjures — a whimsical pop song collapsing with little warning. Though our fictional account is good for a laugh, the real Liam Finn is far more compelling. Fomo is a pocket symphony that has touches of his father’s yearning tenor and whipsmart hooks, but the enthusiasm racing through these tracks depicts a pianist who always ends up standing while playing. (Friday@Lincoln Hall with Marques Toliver.)

If any band could seamlessly morph into kids’ rockers and back into normal attire, it’d be They Might Be Giants. For their last spell, however, some fans were wondering if they’d ever come out of the Jumperoo. Join Us represents the band’s first proper album since 2007’s The Else, which itself was a blip in a run of three “educational” outings in four years. The band seem to be conscious of their absence, dropping an astonishing 18 cuts that celebrates a parade of outsiders all with the quirky aplomb of their artfully chosen night job. Or is it day job. Whatever. (Friday@Vic Theatre with Jonathan Coulton.)

Peter Hook has never found a shortage of people willing to play with him. Whether dabbling in Revenge and Monaco while a member of New Order, or pursuing Freebass and Man Ray since, his willingness to explore has never been questioned. But it’s also what makes his continued mining of his Joy Division career so surprising. Begun last year on the 30th anniversary of Ian Curtis’ death, Hook and his band The Light reeled off Unknown Pleasures in full at his Manchester-based club, and this fall they’re back with Closer ready to spill. (Friday@Metro with California Wives.)

— Steve Forstneger

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Category: Stage Buzz, Weekly

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