Pretty, Tough

A delicate femininity pervades Alela Diane's songs. But unlike her forebears in the 1960s folk revival — Judy Collins, Joan Baez, or Vashti Bunyan, for whom she's opened — her voice has a solid, post-punk, no-BS sound. We have nothing against those ethereal veteran songbirds, but Diane's original songs and interpretations, with their earthy themes and soulful guitar, make us think more of down-to-earth California singer-songwriter Kate Wolf. To Be Still is Diane's second record, now out on Rough Trade; Pitchfork loves it with an 8.0. Tonight's show is a hootenanny of childhood friends from the famous musical breeding ground of Grass Valley, as fellow warbler Mariee Sioux opens.
Mon., May 11, 9:30 p.m., 2009

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