SoundCheck: Sick Puppies, the Fiery Furnaces, Geri X, Crosby, Stills and Nash, O.A.R.

Danny S.

Opening for Blue Dice, Ella Jet

Details: 8 p.m. Friday. Skipper's Smokehouse, 910 Skipper Road, Tampa. $8. (813) 971-0666.

Around the time Nelly's Ride Wit Me and Nickelback's How You Remind Me were topping the charts, a young Danny Scordato was finding musical influence elsewhere. Chicago, Todd Rundgren and especially Paul McCartney were/are among his favorites. At 13, Scordato (who goes by "Danny S." and is adept at drums, guitar, bass, saxophone and piano) offers radiant pop-rock originals, dotted with bouncy keys (those come courtesy of friend and bandmate Alex, 12).

O.A.R. and Brett Dennen

Details: 8 p.m. Wednesday. Tampa Bay Performing Arts Center, 1010 N W.C. MacInnes Place, Tampa. $34 advance, $36 day of show. (813) 229-7827.

O.A.R. (Of a Revolution) built a buzz on college campuses in the late '90s with reggae-infused rock jam That Was a Crazy Game of Poker. "Never to fold," the group has been plugging away with big sax numbers and twisty jam sessions ever since. Dave Matthews Band is the easy comparison here, especially on Hey Girl and Love and Memories. As for opener Brett Dennen, Grey's Anatomy sound bites don't do him justice. The soulful Dennen totes worldly folk-pop a la Paul Simon and has earned fans as diverse as Mandy Moore and Afro-beat star Femi Kuti.

Crosby, Stills and Nash

Details: 8 p.m. Saturday. Ruth Eckerd Hall, 1111 McMullen-Booth Road, Clearwater. $62.50-$129.50. (727) 791-7400. Sold out.

With trademark three-part harmonies, wistful folk-pop, dabs of A.M. radio country and cries for social change, Crosby, Stills and Nash proudly represent the era of the singer-songwriter. Each member continues to bring hefty contributions live: Graham Nash with folksy sing-along Teach Your Children and nimble Marrakesh Express ("I smell the garden in your hair"); guitar virtuoso Stephen Stills with Love the One You're With and Southern Cross; David Crosby with hippie hymn Almost Cut My Hair and poetic ballad Guinevere. CSN will also cover James Taylor's You Can Close Your Eyes and the Grateful Dead's Uncle John's Band.

Sick Puppies

With Hurt

Details: 7 p.m. Friday. State Theatre, 687 Central Ave., St. Petersburg. $15. (727) 895-3045.

Not unlike treadmill-hoppin' OK Go, Australian rock act Sick Puppies' breakthrough came via music video. With some 50 million YouTube plays and love from an unlikely Oprah Winfrey, the band's video accompaniment to balladic rock track All the Same spread the concept of "free hugs" round the world. The Pups' latest cuts, however, show more muscle. In fact, the heavy guitar thwack of You're Going Down and Street Fighter War might have you more inclined to throw elbows or execute a rear-naked choke.

Geri X

With Thomas Wynn and the Believers, Have Gun, Will Travel

Details: 8 p.m. Friday. Crowbar, 1812 17th St. N, Ybor City. $8. (813) 241-8600.

She's a shining example of why "local" doesn't always mean amateur. Bulgarian-born singer-songwriter and tattooed temptress Geri X celebrates the release of her video for Kiss on Both Eyelids, a rousing folk-rock tune brimming with contrasts — classic yet contemporary, earthy yet evocative. "Like a kiss on both eyelids, you're wonderful and safe," she sings. Guest stars including guitarist Eric McFadden (Jackson Browne, Eric Clapton, P-Funk) and guitarist-songwriter James Hall (Kommander, Jane's Addiction) will join Geri onstage.

The Fiery Furnaces

With GreyMarket, Glasgow

Details: 6:30 p.m. Saturday. Orpheum, 1902 Republica de Cuba Ave., Ybor City. $13-$15. (813) 248-9500.

Calling the Fiery Furnaces "weird" might be akin to calling Yao Ming "pretty tall." It's "music that defies explication, categorization, and most standards of comprehension," says the New York Times. Essentially, Eleanor and Matthew Friedberger's signature sound lacks the signature part – sometimes it's '70s pop, thumping garage, psychedelic rock or theatrical electronica. One album is narrated entirely by the siblings' gravelly voiced grandmother. And a "silent album" — they'll only provide the sheet music (it's up to you to play it) — is in the works, too. Fans of similarly out-there Deerhoof or the Dodos should like it.

SoundCheck: Sick Puppies, the Fiery Furnaces, Geri X, Crosby, Stills and Nash, O.A.R. 08/19/09 [Last modified: Wednesday, August 19, 2009 5:30am]

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