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Folky Femmes

You've got to love a band whose members, in their own biography, refer to themselves as "calcified fossils of teen angst." In rock music that seeks longevity, a little self-deprecating humor goes a long way. Such a brand of humor is a big factor in the continued resonance of the Violent Femmes, early perfecters of the folk-punk strain of indie-rock.

The band arrived pretty much ready-made back in 1981, when the equal parts tortured soul/mischievous court jester Gordon Ganno joined up, bringing with him a frayed notebook full of songs that would become classics immediately upon their recording and stay that way for the 25-plus years following.

Those songs still constitute at least half of the band's live shows, which says one of two things: Either the band is incredibly lazy, or the tunes so perfectly captured the tenor of their times that they've managed to become universal anthems of alienation, frustration and the enduring belief that feeling alienated and frustrated somehow makes you special.

I'm going with choice No. 2 above. I'm also going to Lafayette Square on Thursday to see the band play a free show that, one hopes, will reach the same heights the band's Thursday at the Square performance of last summer scaled.

The show starts at 5 p.m., with sets from able openers Mobile and the Rev. Visit for additional info.

-- Jeff Miers

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