With Hot Shit, Sam Coomes and Janet Weiss of Qusai continue the get-in-the-van good fight.

In the past, Quasi existed as a kind of musical juxtaposition: The duo was married but formed the band after its divorce, and though the music consisted of a big happy organ, in-the-pocket drums and sweet harmonies, Coomes' words were anything but joyful.

And because of their various musical associations -- Weiss is the drummer for lauded punk trio Sleater-Kinney and both have toured and played with Elliot Smith -- people often wrote more about their relationship and ancillary projects than about Quasi itself.



Modified Arts, 407 East Roosevelt

Scheduled to perform with Bella on Saturday, October 18. Doors open at 8 p.m. Tickets are $7. Call 602-462-5516 for more information.

So here's the skinny: Coomes and Weiss are still not married and Hot Shit sounds like nothing they have put out before. The album is guitar-based and raw, with Coomes' wobbly voice seldom aided by Weiss's harmonies. This time out, Quasi have largely forsaken the roxichord, and the songs are less melodic and more rock-oriented. The lyrics are politically charged, climaxing with a ballsy rant against the Bush administration at the end of "White Devil's Dream." Better see this pioneering male/female duo before John Aschroft sticks the Patriot Act on 'em . . .

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