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New Year, New Local Tunes 

Several area acts have fresh full-length albums you should check out

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It Is What It Is

Peter Rivera has still got that rock 'n' roll feeling down. The original lead singer and drummer of Motown's Rare Earth, who relocated to Spokane, has recorded a free-spirited disc chock-full of heartfelt, crisp, swingin' tracks. These are songs about dancing, romance and living fully, but also about the state of politics in this country. Chateau Rive hosts the album release party Feb. 7. (LJ)


Do It Yourself

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Under his moniker the Holy Broke, singer-songwriter Kent Ueland (formerly of Terrible Buttons) pens memorable prose. He's not just singing about the typical love and loss, but rather is self-deprecating ("I Ain't Proud") and in search of his conscience ("Pretty Girls Weren't Made For Talkin'"). There's even an upbeat tune about suicide. Ueland's guitar and gravelly, affected voice are highly sufficient here, but the lyrics carry the weight. The album release party is Jan. 24 at the Bartlett. (LJ)


Steve the Dog

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Pop this in and 45 minutes full of instrumental math rock/acid jazz will just fly by, each track bleeding into the next. This intricate music is calculated to such methodical perfection it somehow feels like a big-ass jam session. Drummer Brad Spracklin and Nick Palmieri, on guitar and Moog, are clearly smitten with arithmetic ("Sobbing Mathematically" and "Mathaholik") but still manage to pack miles of soul into their sound. The Spokane band's release party is Jan. 16 at Hamilton Studio. (LJ)


Title TBD

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Heavy Seventeen might call their latest the Drunk Sessions, but Basement Tapes is more apt, given the sessions in drummer Cody Brooks' subterranean lair. The results? An appealing lo-fi blur of power-pop tunes and surfy guitar lines. The band, featuring members of Myth Ship and the Camaros, posted the songs on their ReverbNation page a few weeks ago and plan on making it a free Bandcamp download. (DN)


Kid Tested, Mother Approved

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The Post Falls band goes big, stuffing 23 songs onto Kid Tested, Mother Approved, split into sections called "Songs for the Playground" and "Songs for Timeout." They probably could have picked the dozen best to make for a stronger set overall, but their youthful exuberance comes through loud and clear in the guitar-centric tunes and lyrics to songs like "Clarissa Joan Hart" and "Nickelodean." The album was released last month. (DN)


Lifestyle Toxins

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This is a rugged collection of ever-shifting time signatures, shouted vocals, and instrumental math-rock sure to please Rush fans, along with fans of some of the trio's self-identified influences like the Minutemen and At the Drive-In. The winning instrumental interplay between guitarist/vocalist Chris Henderson, bassist Aaron Anderberg and drummer Cory Mason is the one constant. The band's release party is Feb. 7 at the Big Dipper. (DN) ♦


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