Les Savy Fav, Pretty Girls Make Graves, Ex Models; Hella

The new post-punk descends upon Denton. New York's Ex Models have a new split EP out with the Seconds, a band that features one of the dudes from the Yeah Yeah Yeahs; the Models' side is very fast and includes riffs that don't leave much room for elaboration. Pretty Girls Make Graves, from Seattle, is made up of people who used to play in bands that had riffs like that; the songs they've written together recall At the Drive-In in the way they never stop twisting and Sleater-Kinney in the way they make the hairs on the back of your neck stand up. Bonus: One guitar player looks quite a bit like the skinny Leonardo DiCaprio, and the band's name is a Smiths song, not a Bauhaus one. Like the Talking Heads before them, Les Savy Fav moved to New York straight from college at the Rhode Island School of Design; the coincidence, though the band is surely tired of being reminded of it, is significant, as each outfit sounds like a funk band masquerading as a rock group (or, on an off night, like the other way around). Last year's Go Forth was more conventional than it needed to have been, but live they'll still make you scratch your head. Sacramento's Hella, who headline a separate Rubber Gloves show Thursday night, only have a guitarist and a drummer; Hold Your Horse Is, their CD, doesn't necessarily make that obvious.
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Mikael Wood

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