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When the Hamtramck Blowout — America’s largest local music festival — returns on March 7, it’ll be its 10th year. That’s a decade of music and mayhem, but how many Molson headaches does that work out to? Don’t answer that. Blowout has always been about old favorites as much as new talent, and ’07 is no exception. And in the weeks leading up to our official preview issue, X BOX will appear with quick-hit profiles of Blowout artists.

Blowout X: Experience it for the first time again, for the tenth time in a row! —Johnny Loftus


The Beautyfire

The five tracks on their self-titled EP place the Beautyfire solidly in line with the guitar-heavy, depression meds side of modern rock. Jordan Davis lengthens most of her vocals into a wail of pain mixed with longing; she could be the female foil to Staind’s Aaron Lewis. Why Beautyfire guitarist Davis Shinn wears a mask isn’t specified. The cult of Buckethead? At 9 p.m., Mar. 8, Jean’s.

Bear Mountain Picnic

Homespun indie rock with a feel that skews toward roots; this isn’t surprising, since BMP reference Dylan in their name but are certainly very excited about the new Shins record, too. It also seems to make sense that these guys hail from Ypsilanti — there’s something about their mismatched cotton work shirts and slight flair for the absurd that screams college town party crasher. And that’s all right with us. At 10:15 p.m., Mar. 8, Kelly’s Bar.

Stare Into the Sun

Whispers Turn to Howls isn’t out yet, but it’s such a terrific album title, we had to print it anyway. In the meantime, check out "Henrietta" on this Downriver trio’s MySpace site — it’s a heady dose of revivalist post-punk hook and crook offset with moody bridges. And listen until the end, because that’s when that electric screwdriver guitar line returns, making you totally want to tear up your art school diploma and swallow gut-rot pills. At 12:45 a.m., Mar. 8, Whiskey in the Jar. Johnny Loftus is the music editor of Metro Times. Send comments to

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